Respite Care: Paying for Respite Care
Costs vary. Some states and organizations underwrite respite care, so be sure to ask. Don't give up -- many organizations work with caregivers and their families to find funds for respite care. And don't think that higher cost equals better care. Check out each facility, talk to the director and spend some time there observing the interactions of the staff and care receivers. Be sure to visit during the time your loved one would be there -- staffing can vary greatly from day to night to weekend care.
How can I pay for or find funds for respite care?
- Nonprofit organizations. The United Way, the Alzheimer's Association, Parkinson's Foundation, Multiple Scleroses Organization and other disability-specific organizations offer respite care/retreats/funding. Go to their websites and search for respite care or respite care funding, and be sure to check with your state or local chapter. You can also go to the ARCH National Respite Network for information about respite services and resources.
- State agencies. Many states offer funding for respite care. Check with your Area Agency on Aging and other aging organizations to see if you're eligible. They may also offer funding or payment, or be able to tell you what respite care organizations they work with.
- Insurance. Generally, medical insurance doesn't cover respite care unless licensed medical professionals are involved. Long term care insurance does cover respite care -- but there are usually limits of respite time and cost, so check your policy.
- SSI. Those with disability coverage may be eligible for home health care benefits. Call or go to your local Social Security office to find out if your loved one is eligible.
- Medicaid. Medicaid doesn't cover respite care, but some states use waivers that can apply to federal funds that help to cover (or offset) costs of respite care. Check with your state's Administration on Aging website. Read more about the differences between Medicare and Medicaid.
- Veterans' benefits. The Veterans' Administrations offer in-patient respite care for up to 30 days a year for qualified veterans.Another benefit for war-time vets is that they can ask for in-home care services, including respite care, for their spouses. Check with the VA website for your state's specific veteran coverage and eligibility requirements.
- Foundation grants. Private foundations offer respite grants. Check into these grants online or check with your employer to see if there's funding available. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Brookdale Foundation are two organizations that offer respite grants.
More Senior Care Services
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