Can a Person With Alzheimer’s Qualify for Home Health Care?

Author: Sarah Williams

Reviewed By: Catherine Braxton

Yes, a person with Alzheimer’s can qualify for home health care, depending on the level of disease progression. Receiving essential support services at home enables those with dementia to live safely in a familiar, comfortable environment. It also relieves pressure from family caregivers. Moreover, public funding usually covers doctor-ordered home health care for those with cognitive decline.     

Benefits of Home Health Care for People With Dementia

Home health care provides medical and therapeutic services in the comfort of an individual’s residence. For those with Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia, such care can make the difference between them remaining at home for longer or moving earlier to a residential care setting. Aides help seniors with activities of daily living, such as toileting, transferring and personal care, and nurses administer medications and monitor medical conditions. Therapeutic interventions, such as physical, occupational and speech therapy, support people with dementia so they can maintain skills and independence for as long as possible.

When combined with home modifications and enhanced safety measures, home health care has many benefits for those with dementia and their families. That said, individuals in the later stages of disease progression often need round-the-clock supervision, specialized programming and intensive hands-on support. In this case, memory care or nursing home care may better suit their needs.     

Home Health Care Financial Assistance for Seniors with Alzheimer’s

Medicare pays for up to 35 hours weekly of medically focused home health care services for people certified by their doctor as homebound. It also covers personal care assistance for those receiving skilled care. Although early-stage Alzheimer’s patients may not qualify, Medicare becomes a valuable financial resource as the disease advances. Similarly, while regulations differ by state, Medicaid typically covers home health care through standard state plans or Home and Community-Based Services waiver programs for seniors who would otherwise require nursing home care. As with Medicare, Medicaid funding probably won’t cover services for those with early-stage dementia. If individuals don’t qualify for public funding, they can still appoint home health care aides independently and pay privately for services. Additionally, those with long-term care insurance plans should check their coverage; many providers start paying out when seniors reach a certain level of cognitive decline.