Ask The Expert
By: Kevin Wedmore, President of Hoosier Senior Solutions
October 12, 2011 –
Kevin Wedmore, is the President of Hoosier Senior Solutions. Kevin has spent over 36 years in the financial services industry assisting Indiana families who are experiencing a transition into long-term healthcare environments . . .whether that is home health care, assisted living, nursing home or memory care. With an emphasis on issues related to Medicaid or veteran’s benefits, Kevin has assisted thousands of families with an understanding of who is responsible for paying at each level of care and has also assisted those families with decisions and planning strategies that help them obtain any public benefits for which they are entitled.
Q: My biggest concern is running out of money while I pay for my husband’s treatment of Alzheimer’s Disease. Are there any benefits that would be available to help me pay for his care?
A: Running out of money while providing for the care of a loved one is one of the biggest challenges facing our seniors. The cost of care is already high and climbing. In short, the answer is ‘yes’. There are specific rules to assure that the spouse of someone who is receiving long-term care does not find themselves impoverished and unable to not only maintain their standard of living now, but also after their loved one has deceased.
Q: My mother is in need of assisted living levels of care. My wife and I are unable to provide that care at home. Is there any program that will help us with the burden of the cost of this care?
A: It is important that you recognize that you and your spouse are unable to provide the proper level of care at home. Many families make the mistake of taking in their loved one, thinking that they are showing love when in fact, the opposite may be true. Getting her the level of care she needs as well as showing love and respect by participating in that care would generally be better for her. And yes, there are both state and federal programs that will help her pay for care. A thorough analysis of her health and financial situations will reveal which programs will assist in paying the expense of care.
Q: My father was in the military. Are there any special programs that will help pay for his care?
A: Yes, veterans are eligible for various programs that will help or completely pay for care. Programs are dependent upon whether his need for care is service or non-service related. An interesting part of the VA’s benefit program is that he can received assistance for home health care, assisted living, nursing home or memory care.
Q: My parents have intended to leave an estate to benefit their church as well as pay for some of their grandchildren’s college education. If they have to pay for their long-term care, there isn’t likely to be any money left in their estate. Is there anything we can do now to assure that they are leaving at least some of their legacy?
A: Everyone has done estate planning . . .that is, they have decided what they want to happen to their ‘stuff’ when they die. With the high cost of health care facing them, many are worried that there won’t be anything left in their estate. With proper planning, your parents will be allowed to leave some of their estate to their heirs while still paying for their ‘fair share’ of expenses as outlined by both the state and federal governments.
Send your questions to AskTheExpert@SeniorsGuideOnline.com