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Geriatrics and Extended Care

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Personal Contributions and Long Term Care Insurance

Private Pay

Even though VA, Medicare, Medicaid and other funding sources cover the costs of some long term care services and settings, depending on eligibility, many people need to use their own income or savings to pay part of the costs for long term care services or settings they need or prefer.

For example, people often use their own resources to pay for:

  • Residing in an Assisted Living Facility or Adult Family Home
  • Paid caregiver assistance with personal care needs, chores, or meals in their home

Long Term Care Insurance

Long Term Care Insurance can also be used to pay for long term care services and settings. Since long term care policies vary, do your homework and choose wisely.

  • Most policies will cover long term care services for a pre-set number of years, after which time you become responsible for the costs of your care.
  • Policies often include an “elimination period” of 30, 60, or 90 days before your benefits begin. This means you agree to pay for all your necessary care for the first 30, 60, or 90 days.
  • Premiums are based in part on your age and medical condition at the time of enrollment in a policy. They become more expensive as you get older.

If you already live in a Nursing Home or Assisted Living Facility, or you already need help with daily activities such as bathing, dressing, or using the toilet, then you probably will not qualify for a new long term care policy. 

Helpful Websites

The Administration for Community Living provides details about:

  • Average costs of long term care services in each state
  • Options to help pay for long term care services.
  • For long term care outside of the VA, click on the following link: Finding Local Services