Benefits programs pay families to care for seniors
Caring for an older adult is expensive. There are out-of-pocket costs for medical supplies, prescription drug co-pays, home modifications, home care help, and more. Also, many people have had to leave their jobs or cut back on hours in order to care for their older adult.
That leaves many family caregivers asking “Can I get paid for caregiving?” The extra money could go a long way to easing the financial pressure.
The good news is that getting paid as a family caregiver is possible – these types of government programs do exist. The not-so-good news is that these programs aren’t available everywhere and not everyone can qualify. But it’s worthwhile to check in case you can get the benefits.
We found 3 benefits programs that pay family members (and sometimes spouses) for caring for their older adult. Find out how they work and where to apply.
3 ways of getting paid as a family caregiver
1. Medicaid programs
Most states have Medicaid programs that give money to seniors so they can hire an in-home caregiver. That person could be a family member or friend instead of a professional caregiver. Some states also allow a spouse to be the paid caregiver.
Each state has its own eligibility requirements and name for its program. If your older adult is accepted into the state’s program, the amount of money they receive will depend on a Medicaid assessment of need and the average state wage for in-home care aides.
To find the local Medicaid office and learn how to apply for the program, it’s best to start with the local Area Agency on Aging. Ask them how to contact the local Medicaid office or how to apply for a program that would pay you for caring for your older adult.
2. Special state programs
Some states may have similar programs that pay family caregivers, but for people who are not eligible for Medicaid or who have specific conditions like traumatic brain injury.
To find out if there are any special programs that your older adult may qualify for, contact your local Medicaid office or the state department of health.
To find the Medicaid office, it’s probably easiest to start with the local Area Agency on Aging and ask them to direct you to the correct government office.
3. Veterans benefits programs
Veteran-Directed Home and Community-Based Services (VD-HCBS)
This home-based care program helps veterans of any age who are at risk of institutional placement to continue to live in their own homes.
A veteran can choose the services that best meet their needs and manage their own spending budgets for personal care services. Hiring their own in-home care aides falls into that area – including family and friends.
Aid & Attendance or Housebound programs
Veterans who are eligible for a VA pension and need in-home care or are housebound may be able to get additional benefits payments on top of their monthly pension. Note: Veterans cannot receive both of these benefits at the same time.
To find out how to apply for veterans benefits programs, contact the local VA regional benefits office.
Recommended for you:
- Benefits Programs Help Pay for Caregiving Expenses
- How Seniors Can Get Help Paying for Prescription Drugs
- Cost of Long Term Care: 5 Ways Estimates Help Seniors and Caregivers
By DailyCaring Editorial Team
Image: Generations Home Care
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