My 64-year-old married sister is being discharged from rehab in Florida, but she still needs a lot of care. After having several mini strokes in the hospital (she had a bad infection and became septic) she is bedridden with no control of her bladder or bowels. They say this can improve but there are no guarantees and it could take months to see improvement.

Her husband works full-time and there is no one to take care of her at home. He makes too much money for her to qualify for Medicaid but he cannot afford the type of care she needs. She was already on full disability and has an Aetna Medicare PPO. She is not on her husband's insurance due to the cost. She does not have Long Term Care insurance.

They are in Florida. Who can they contact to see what their options are? How can the rehab place discharge her when there is no one to take care of her? It doesn't seem like she benefited at all from being at the rehab center. She's actually less alert than when she got there. This is frustrating and scary.

She goes from rehab to a SNF. Her husband sees an Elder lawyer to have assets split. Her split goes to her care and when almost gone, he applies for Medicaid.
Helpful Answer (22)
Reply to JoAnn29
TouchMatters Jul 4, 2024
Thank you. Short and to the point - good advice.
I don't know what SNF is. However, I too, said husband needs to get an lawyer specializing in elder care. Gena
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If she's already on disability, does she have a caseworker? If not, contact social services for her county.

"He makes too much money for her to qualify for Medicaid..."

Did they actually apply or is this an assumption? No one should assume this so they should talk to a Medicaid Planner for her home state.
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Reply to Geaton777
JoAnn29 Jun 29, 2024
When on SSD there is no caseworker. Just a follow up every so many years to say you are still disabled. If on short-term disability thru the State there is no caseworkervas such. Its like collecting unemployment and lasts maybe 26 weeks.
Does her husband not have FMLA leave at work????? He can't just leave her alone at home. He needs to either speak with HR about family leave to care for his wife, hire in home help, or pay for a Skilled Nursing facility out of pocket. Or ask a family member to come and help out. Crises happen, unfortunately, so we have to do what's required to keep our spouse cared for. Hopefully your sister will recover quicker in her own home.

If they have to downsize their home to afford caregivers, that may be the best option, if her recovery takes a long time. Her husband should sit down with a Certified Elder Care attorney to get some guidance and advice.

Best of luck.
Helpful Answer (9)
Reply to lealonnie1

I have a strange thought, maybe someone else would know more , but what would happen if they got divorced, could she then get Medicaid?

Desperate times lead to desperate time
Helpful Answer (8)
Reply to Anxietynacy
TouchMatters Jul 4, 2024
There is NO 'strange thought' when trying to get needed care ... that should be a given in the U.S.A. for older people.

All creative ideas are needed / welcomed. However, divorcing at this stage of the game may be a red flag and there may be 'perimeters' about these legal proceedings based on when they happen.

And ... happy July 4th. We do not care about our elderly in this country - although we are the richest country in the world).
Capitalism could include some humanitarian, compassionate care for all of us as we age. At this point, we're lucky to be able to keep our soc sec... And who knows how things will proceed. Gena
This sure is tricky. They might have to put her in a nursing home and pay for it and get advice on how to split the money properly so at some point she will be able to get medicaid to pay for SNF care.

It's too bad that they didn't try to figure this out until she got discharged.
Helpful Answer (7)
Reply to againx100
asfastas1can Jul 5, 2024
Sometimes rehab does not give you enough time to figure something out. My 95-year-mother was in rehab facility for two weeks, but when physical therapy said they could do no more for her, her insurance would not cover any more time. We had two weeks to figure something out for her - and we are retired and had the time (if not the physical energy) to devote to finding out a solution that worked for her. This poor guy is trying to do everything for his wife and work full time. I agree with the fact that our USA is shameful in ignoring the fact that capitalism in health care is
exploitive, and that our older people are treated so shabbily.
Your sister's husband is most probably going to have to take time off work to sort this.

Hopefully he is communicating with the discharge planner at the rehab centre - to arrange the care & services his wife will need at home - before she gets home.

Sometimes even the best planned help won't be enough & getting home is the real test.

They will either cope or not cope. If not coping, then back into the healthcare system can happen, maybe with a longer rehab stay.

Has your sister been able to speak up for herself? About what she expects & wants?
Helpful Answer (4)
Reply to Beatty

It happened to me as my wife’s health declined I ended up quitting my job actually closing my business of 20years to take care of her. Not only did my income go to zero but the time I spent taking care of her was incredible. During that time I did have nurses who came and someone to giver her a bath. There was an instance at the hospital where the said she was not sick and she had to leave. After a broken bone she spent a month in a care facility that was too terrible to describe. Some decisions are difficult when your spouse is involved. you do what you have to do and worry about the finances later. I hoped that by the end I would have enough money left to take care myself. It was a huge financial drain. One tip I can offer is as you age start setting yourself up for passive income. Invest in stocks bonds and real estate. By the time you are 65 your investments should be bringing the majority of your income. Consider a part time job not for the money but for pleasure the money will be a bonus.
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Reply to Sample

It is a difficult situation due to husband working and making 'too much $' to qualify for care services. Someone needs to check into the laws in Florida.
He could start by hiring an attorney that specializes in elder care law.

Gena / Touch Matters
Helpful Answer (1)
Reply to TouchMatters

Touch Matters is so right on. This country does not care at all for our seniors. It is nearly impossible to set up a Miller trust when you don’t qualify for Medicaid because you dared to work your whole life and get a decent pension and/or social security. Elder care lawyers give an initial free consultation then charge thousands of dollars to actually do the work. My husband and I have been going through1this for over a year now. We can’t afford a private CNA. Medicare says they will pay for one up to 30 hrs per week if certain conditions are met by the patient, which they are. The agencies that supposedly participate in this always seem to find a way out.
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Reply to lfm5252

Get an elder attorney's advice.
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Reply to Patathome01

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