Paying for Care with the ALTCS Benefit
Get the High Quality Care you need with ALTCS
Senior Planning Can Help
Whether you need assisted living, a group home, or skilled nursing, Senior Planning can help compile a list of ALTCS eligible places to provide the care you need. There are a number of different care options to consider, which can be overwhelming. We understand. This is why so many people choose to work with Senior Planning. We will help you get the care you need while you wait for your ALTCS application to process with the state. We will find long term care options that will work before and after approval so you don’t have to move twice.
What is ALTCS?
ALTCS is a state-run program that uses Medicaid funding to provide care to seniors and those with disabilities. For people who cannot take care of themselves, but cannot privately afford the care they need, ALTCS will help shoulder the cost. The ALTCS application consists of both a medical portion and a financial portion. An applicant must be approved for both parts. If approved, ALTCS will pay for in-home care, assisted living, group homes, nursing homes, skill nursing facilities, etc.
One major misconception about ALTCS is that it can only be used at state-run facilities. This is not true. ALTCS will pay for care at assisted living communities that are contracted with ALTCS. This means that many privately run care homes and larger assisted living centers take ALTCS as a form of payment. Assisted Living is a great option for seniors that need daily care and assistance. Assisted living communities provide assistance with activities of daily living for residents, making sure they bathe, take medications, eat, use the restroom, and more.
Senior Planning will work with you to find assisted living that accepts the ALTCS program. This is a completely free service as we are paid a commission from the communities we work with. If you choose somewhere we recommend, we are paid a referral fee by the care provider.
Residential Care Homes
Some people have greater care needs than what a large assisted living facility can handle. This is why residential care homes are a great option for many ALTCS patients. Also called group homes, these are typical family homes found in neighborhoods, but they have been renovated. Houses can usually fit 5-10 residents, making the community much more intimate. Also, residential care homes are a more flexible and affordable option than larger facilities. They provide around the clock care to their residents and caregivers frequently live on site with the residents. Caregivers are always available to the residents at the homes, making it an ideal solution for many people.
Many seniors or people with disabilities prefer to remain in their own home while receiving care. This is why ALTCS will also pay up to 40-hours per week of in-home care, depending on medical need. There are a number of in-home care agencies to choose from. One major benefit of choosing in-home care is that the state usually lets the ALTCS recipient keep all of their income as long as it is below the monthly income limit. Also, ALTCS can pay a family member as a caregiver, which is a great option if a person does not want to use an agency. For family members that are already providing care, free-of-charge, this can bring some much needed financial relief.
Using ALTCS to pay for Care FAQ
Will ALTCS Pay For Skilled Nursing Facilities?
For those who need 24 hour care, a skilled nursing facility may be a good option. Skilled nursing provides around the clock care from licensed medical professionals. Generally, Medicare will pay for a certain amount of skilled nursing. Because many skilled nursing stays are temporary, this is usually sufficient. However, when a person must stay beyond the Medicare pay-period it can get extremely expensive. This is why ALTCS will pay for skilled nursing when necessary.
Can I be Paid to Take Care of a Family Member?
In short, yes. However, you must meet similar requirements to other registered caregivers, such as training and provider qualifications. Also, you will need to be fingerprinted and have a TB test done annually, just like other healthcare professionals. Lastly, you must choose a program contractor in order to get paid by ALTCS. If this sounds a little complicated, you’re not alone. Many people opt to use an agency to manage their registration and payroll.
What Does ALTCS Share of Cost Mean?
Share of cost basically means that ALTCS will pay for care only after an ALTCS member’s income has first been put towards care. If the ALTCS recipient is residing at home, this does not apply. But in assisted living or residential care settings, an ALTCS member pays first and then ALTCS pays second. Usually, an ALTCS member will have to use all of their income except for a personal needs allowance. The amount can change if the ALTCS recipient has a spouse or disabled dependents.
How Much Does ALTCS Pay Caregivers?
Generally, ALTCS will pay family caregivers between 30-40 hours a week for care, depending on the ALTCS recipient’s care needs. The rate is around $15.00/hour. In certain circumstances, ALTCS will sometimes pay for respite care if the primary caregiver cannot provide care for a short period of time. The rules for family caregivers change when the ALTCS recipient is under 18. Give us a call today to find out if you might be eligible to become a paid family caregiver.