When it comes to addressing long term care expenses, most people say that Medicaid will cover for their expenses. Though this federal program can pay for long term care services, not everyone can qualify under it. If you’re looking to this program to cover your long term care needs, you must first know if you are eligible.
Overall, applicants needs to be a citizen of the United States or were able to satisfy immigration rules. Furthermore, they need to reside in the state where they intend to apply for Medicaid coverage and must possess a Social Security number.
If you are 65 years old or older, permanently disabled, blind, pregnant, a child or someone who takes care of a child, you could be qualified to receive Medicaid benefits.
Your need for long term care should be substantiated first. It will be assessed by a nurse or a social worker in the state where you’re applying in. Apart from determining if you really need long term care, they will also figure out which care setting is suitable for your situation.
Your ability to perform Activities of Daily Living (ADL) will determine your eligibility. In evaluating this, they will see if you need the assistance or unable to perform basic activities such as bathing, eating, getting dressed or transferring.
The amount of your income and assets is also a determinant of whether or not you’ll qualify. Some of your income and assets are counted, while others are not. For instance, your checking and savings accounts are countable while your place of residence is not.
Some people turn to spending down their assets. If you have an amount of savings and possessions that are too much for Medicaid’s standard, consult a financial expert to see if spending down is really the best option for you or if there are ways that you can still qualify for Medicaid without letting most of your assets go.
Medicaid can be helpful especially if you don’t have the financial means to pay for long term care services. However, this should not be your only option in addressing this need. As early as now, start planning on how you will face long term care needs in the future. Explore different financial strategies and consider how long term care insurance can be beneficial for you. If you take time to prepare, you’ll have that sense of assurance that your quality of life and finances will be preserved even if you need long term care in the future.