Any financial aid for caring of elderly in home full-time?

Enders asked...

My husband and I will be moving in with Mom to care for her full time - is there any financial aid for home care avaiable to help us? My husband works full time and I do the caring for Mom.

Expert Answer

There may be a little. If your mother has low income and assets, she might get in-home care from Medicaid. Until recently, your mother would have to get that Medicaid in-home care through a certified home care agency. Now, it's possible – depending on what state you live in -- to bypass the home care agency and have the state pay your mother directly for her in-home care. She can then use the money to pay you for taking care of her. In some states, this kind of cash assistance is possible even your mother has slightly too much income or assets to qualify for Medicaid.

Here's how it works. A state program called Cash and Counseling directly pays your mother the same amount Medicaid would pay an aide from a home care agency. Your mother can spend these funds on anyone she chooses to take care of her. Your mother also decides how much to pay. Also, your mother can use some of the money to make home improvements for safety or comfort, or to buy personal care items. The catch is that your state has to be offering this Cash and Counseling or similar state program, and your mother has to have low enough income and assets to qualify for it. To find out more about these cash assistance programs, go to the page on this site called How to Get Paid for Being Your Parent's Caregiver.

Your mother can apply for Medicaid and Cash and Counseling, or for a similar state cash assistance program, at your local Medicaid office. To find the local Medicaid office near you, contact the Eldercare Locator by phone toll-free at 800-677-1116, or online you can go to any search engine and type in the word Medicaid and the name of your state.