Paying for Nursing Home and Elder Care

There is no easy way to see your elderly loved one physically and mentally decline due to the ravages of age. There may come a time when the tough decision about nursing homes or long-term care facilities has to be made, and it can be concerning in terms of quality of care, cost, geriatric nursing capabilities and the overall emotion surrounding the decision.

When the cost and financial obligation of elder care becomes a concern, it can be hard to know not only what type of care should be provided, but also how to pay for the care itself. Some options include assisted living facilities, nursing homes, in-home visiting geriatric nurses or caring for your loved one yourself. Each of these has its own benefits and problems, but when it comes to paying for them, there is help available.

If your senior loved one has had a life insurance policy in place, it may also have coverage for long-term care that includes nursing homes, assisted living or geriatric nurse visits. Purchasing additional long-term care insurance is also a possibility, and with the new law that was recently signed in New York, it is possible to convert life insurance benefits into the cash needed to pay for care within a facility. Other options include viatical settlements in which a brokerage firm essentially buys the life insurance policy in exchange for providing money to pay for long-term care needs. Reverse mortgages are also a possibility, and work much the same as a viatical settlement, except that a house is used as collateral instead of a life insurance policy.

The Veteran’s Administration offers benefits to military veterans, and there are VA-specific facilities that can help care for your loved one, providing geriatric nurses and specialists for both in- and out-patient care. Medicare and Medicaid are also options when there is little cash available for long-term care. It is also common for families to financially band together and pay for the senior’s care out of their own pockets.

There are countless ways in which long-term care can be financially provided to an elderly loved one. Some of the financial obligation of nursing homes, assisted living facilities or specialized geriatric nursing can be helped through planning and using life and long-term care insurance, while other methods include using current assets as collateral for payments to the facilities or organizations that specialize in geriatric care. As the need for money in regard to long-term care increases due to the aging of the Baby Boomer population, more methods of securing financial assets are likely to develop. Providing for your loved one’s health and wellness (or your own!) during the golden years is one of the greatest gifts you can give.