Having limited resources, how do I get into a nursing home?

1 answer | Last updated: Dec 01, 2016
Piddidle asked...

Having limited resources, how do I get into a nusing home in New York state?

Expert Answers

Barbara Steinberg is the CEO and founder of BLS Eldercare Financial Solutions, which specializes in helping families pay for long-term care for their loved ones. A registered financial gerontologist, she speaks regularly on the topic of paying for long-term care and is a financial expert for Caring.com.

If your resources are limited, you may qualify for Medicaid to pay for your nursing home care. Medicaid is a joint federal-state entitlement program for the financially needy. It is administered by the state and local governments and the rules vary from state to state. Medicaid law is complicated and you should seek the advice of someone who is knowledgeable about the laws in your state. In general, you must meet income, asset and physical requirements. Most states require you to spend down your assets to a level below a few thousand dollars. If you are married, there is some protection of assets and income for your spouse.

Someone who runs out of assets is not automatically eligible for Medicaid if he or she is in good health. When you apply to a nursing home, you will be evaluated physically and mentally to determine if you need the care provided by a nursing home.

The nursing home usually has someone on staff who can provide you with information about how Medicaid works in that facility.