#AssistedLivingBasics: The Costs of Assisted Living

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Adult Care Connection has been helping families navigate their way through the process of selecting the appropriate settings in Assisted Living for over 21 years. Our highly skilled staff is comprised of medical social workers, with several years of extensive experience in working with the aging and disabled population.

Every day, we answer questions about assisted living when discussing cases with our clients and professional referral sources.  We would like to share some of the that information with you in our first blog series, #AssistedLivingBasics.

In this blog post, we will be discussing the costs for assisted living. It comes as a shock to most people to find out that assisted living is NOT paid for by Medicare.  The majority of people pay for assisted living out of pocket (personal funds). The only forms of insurance that can cover assisted living costs are:

  • Long Term Care (LTC) Insurance
  • Medicaid (ALTCS in Arizona)
  • Veteran’s Benefits
  • Worker’s Compensation.  

Although assisted living is not easily paid for out of personal funds, it is the most affordable option available for the long term care of a loved one when family members are unable to provide the care their loved one needs on a continuous basis (24 hour care).

The following are general ranges in assisted living for facility based care and for residential care homes:

  • Assisted Living Communities/Facilities
    • $3500 - $8000 per month for private room.  Average rate $5000 - $6000.
    • $3000 - $6000 per month for shared suite (roommate). Average rate $4000.
  • Residential Assisted Living Homes/Care Homes
    • $3500 - $6000 for a private room.  Average rate $4500 - $5000.
    • $2500 - $3500 for a semi-private (shared) room.   Average rate $3000.

When considering the reason for the rates, there are a few factors to consider: 

  • The rate of employee minimum wage was raised to $10.50 per hour in 2018 in the state of Arizona.
  • At the starting rate of $2500 per month for a shared room in a residential care home (lowest option available in assisted living) for 24 hour care, which includes meals, laundry service, medication management, etc… it works out to be $83.33 per day, which is $3.47 per hour.  
  • Hiring a caregiver through a home care company/agency is about $25.00/hour on average in Arizona in 2018.  This works out to be $600.00 per day, which is $18,000 per month for 24 hours of private duty care daily in the patient’s own home.  Then there is the cost of meals, laundry, etc. to factor in. Most medication management is provided by a nurse from a home health company/agency and can range in cost widely, depending on various factors.  

Although assisted living is not easily paid for out of personal funds, it is the most affordable option available for the long term care of a loved one when family members are unable to provide the care their loved one needs on a continuous basis (24 hour care).

When families or individuals are not able to pay for the costs of assisted living, they can apply for Arizona’s form of Medicaid, which is called: Arizona Long Term Care System, or ALTCS, pronounced “All-Tex”. There are maximum allowable income and asset requirements as well as medical condition requirements which are reviewed by the State of Arizona prior to anyone being approved to receive benefits.  Next week, we will be discussing those parameters in further detail, so be sure to tune in to #AssistedLivingBasics which will be available on Monday, March 26th, 2018.

We hope this information is helpful to you and your family.  If you have any questions or wish to discuss your personal situation with us, please call us at 480-380-2348 or email us at info@adultcareconnection.com