Alabama has a sizable senior population comprising more than 869,000 residents or 17.3% of the state’s total population. The state is also home to several highly ranked hospitals, including the University of Alabama at Birmingham Hospital and Huntsville Hospital. The cost of living ranks far below the national average. Combined with year-round warm weather and easy access to both beaches and mountains, these factors make Alabama a popular landing spot for older Americans looking for a place to retire.

Alabama also offers abundant choices for in-home care, which includes help with meal preparation, shopping, cleaning and other domestic tasks. There is also home health care, which consists of clinical services such as occupational and physical therapy. In-home care in Alabama costs $3,813 per month, while home health care is just a bit more at $3,851 per month.

This guide provides an overview of in-home care in Alabama. Below you’ll find information on average costs throughout the state as well as explanations of what Medicaid and Medicare cover and how to determine eligibility for these benefit programs. This guide also lists resources available to help seniors in Alabama age in place safely and comfortably, and it outlines the current COVID-19 safety protocols required by home health care and in-home care providers in Alabama.

The Cost of In-Home Care in Alabama

According to the Genworth Cost of Care Survey, Alabama has some of the lowest in-home care costs in the country, averaging $3,813 per month in 2021. This figure is far below the national average of $4,957 per month and lower than all of the surrounding states except Mississippi, which has the same average costs. Florida’s in-home care costs, at $4,767, are the highest in the region, followed by Tennessee at $4,576 and Georgia at $4,290.

$3813

Alabama

$4957

The United States

$4767

Florida

$4567

Tennessee

$4290

Georgia

$3813

Mississippi

The cost of in-home care in Alabama can vary depending on the city and the region of the state. Of Alabama’s largest metropolitan areas, Birmingham has the highest monthly in-home care costs at $4,242, followed by Huntsville at $4,004 and Mobile, which sits right at the state average with monthly in-home care costs of $3,813.

$4242

Birmingham

$4004

Huntsville

$3813

Mobile

Alabama seniors have health care service options beyond in-home care. Nursing home facilities provide the highest and most intensive level of care, but they are also much more expensive than in-home care, averaging $6,676 per month in Alabama for a semi-private room. Assisted living facilities, at $3,503 per month on average, are slightly cheaper than in-home care, but the senior loses the benefit of getting to remain in their own home. Home health care, which is similar to in-home care but includes clinical services such as physical and occupational therapy, is roughly the same price as in-home care at $3,851 per month. The least expensive option, averaging $758 per month, is adult day health care.

$3813

In-home care

$3851

Home health care

$6676

Nursing home care (semi-private room)

$3503

Assisted living facility

$758

Adult day health care

Does Medicaid Cover Home Care in Alabama?

Medicaid does not directly pay for non-clinical in-home care in Alabama, but the state has several waiver programs to help defray the cost of care. These programs include the Alabama Community Transition (ACT) Waiver, the Elderly and Disabled Waiver, and the Personal Choice Waiver.

Home Care Waiver Programs in Alabama

Alabama seniors have three waiver programs available to help cover the costs of in-home care and home health care. These programs vary in the specific benefits they provide as well as their eligibility requirements.

Waiver
Contact
Services Provided

(800) 362-1504

The Alabama Community Transition (ACT) Waiver provides support to seniors in Alabama who currently receive nursing home care but who wish to transition to independent living. The waiver has no age minimum but requires an assessment to determine suitability for independent living.

(800) 362-1504

The Elderly and Disabled Waiver provides services to seniors in Alabama who require assistance with certain daily living activities but who wish to stay in their homes rather than relocate to a nursing or assisted living facility.

(844) 602-7275

The Personal Choices Waiver is an option for Alabama seniors who qualify for either of the other two waivers that provide support for in-home care services. This waiver gives a monthly allowance, which the senior can use at their discretion to pay for necessities, including additional help with daily living activities or home modifications.

How to Know if You’re Eligible for Medicaid in Alabama

To qualify for Medicaid in Alabama as of 2022, seniors must meet a series of financial and non-financial eligibility guidelines. Single applicants must have an annual income below $10,332 and total assets below $2,000, while married applicants who are applying together must have a combined annual income below $15,372 and total assets below $3,000.

Income Limits*
Asset Limits

Single Person

$10,332

$2,000

Two-Person Household

$15,372

$3,000

 *per year

Alabama Medicaid recipients must also meet the following basic requirements:

  • Be a resident of Alabama as of the application date.
  • Be a U.S. citizen or have satisfactory immigration status.

How to Apply for Medicaid in Alabama

The fastest way to apply for Medicaid in Alabama is to do it online. You can also apply in person at a local Medicaid office or call (800) 362-1504 to receive assistance over the phone.

What Information You Will Need

To apply for Medicaid in Alabama, you will need to prove your identity, your healthcare needs and your financial eligibility. In order to do this, you’ll need an ID card in the form of a driver’s license or passport and a Social Security card; information about your current healthcare or insurance provider; and financial documents that may include tax returns and statements from your bank and retirement accounts.

How to Get Help Applying for Medicaid

Like all states, Alabama has strict eligibility requirements for Medicaid, and the application process can be lengthy and confusing. Worse, an honest mistake can lead to a denial, forcing you to fix the error, appeal the decision, and then wait weeks or even months for a new answer. To help simplify the process, the state offers several resources to determine eligibility and apply for benefits.

Contact
Area Served
Services Provided

(800) 362-1504

Entire State

The Alabama Medicaid Agency administers Medicaid services for the entire state and is a good resource for seniors who have questions about the application process or about their eligibility. Agency representatives are available by phone and in person to offer assistance in obtaining benefits.

(800) 252-1818

Entire State

The Alabama Department of Public Health administers a number of public health initiatives for seniors in the state. Its website features an informative "How Do I?" section where users can receive answers to their questions about health benefits in the state, including Medicaid and Medicare.

(866) 456-4995

Entire State

Legal Services Alabama provides free and low-cost legal aid to low-income Alabama residents, including seniors on fixed or restricted incomes. These legal services may include help applying for Medicaid or other public benefits or appealing a denial of services.

Does Medicare Cover In-Home Care in Alabama?

In general, Medicare does not cover the cost of non-medical home care. That being said, there are situations in which Medicare provides some coverage for medical home care, referred to as “Home Healthcare.” There are several eligibility restrictions for coverage, including that individuals must be homebound and have a referral from their doctor specifically for home healthcare services.

Below is an overview of some of the skilled medical professionals whose in-home services are typically covered by Medicare – for more in-depth information, refer to our Guide to Home Healthcare.

  • Physical Therapists: Physical therapy is used to help patients recover from injuries (broken bones, knee injuries, etc.), treat ongoing conditions such as arthritis, and assist in recovery from surgeries and procedures such as a knee or hip replacement.
  • Visiting Nurses: Licensed nurses can provide a number of medical services for those who don’t need to stay in the hospital, but do need regular medical services such as wound care, changing feeding tubes, etc.
  • Occupational Therapists: Occupational therapists help seniors regain or maintain the ability to accomplish normal, daily tasks, such as bathing, dressing, eating, and other daily activities.
  • Speech Therapists: Speech therapists help seniors who are struggling to adequately communicate due to a stroke, dementia, or any other cause regain the ability to functionally communicate using a variety of means. Additionally, speech therapists help to keep seniors independent by modifying diets, teaching special techniques to swallow safely, and retraining associated muscles.

As mentioned above, in-home care is distinctly different from home healthcare. But, there can be some overlap in services between the two types of care. So, while Medicare doesn’t cover non-medical in-home care, there are in-home care services that may be covered in special circumstances when they’re provided in conjunction with home healthcare (such as an occupational therapist helping with eating or dressing)

Other Financial Assistance Options for In-Home Care in Alabama

While the above programs help many people finance in-home care, they will not cover all costs for everyone. There are other ways to pay for in-home care, including out-of-pocket arrangements with siblings, annuities, reverse mortgages, private insurance and more. Read Caring.com’s Guide to In-Home Care Costs to learn more about these alternative payment options.

Free and Low-Cost Resources for Seniors in Alabama

While aging in place offers a number of benefits for Alabama seniors, including independence, autonomy and the ability to remain in one’s own home and stay connected to friends and neighbors, it also comes with a number of challenges, particularly when physical limitations make it difficult to carry out daily living activities. Alabama offers several free and low-cost resources that help seniors age in place safely and comfortably.

Contact
Area Served
>Services Provided

(334) 242-5743

Entire State

The Alabama Long-Term Care Ombudsman serves the state’s senior population not only by acting as a liaison between patients and their long-term care providers but also by assisting Alabama residents in getting their health care needs taken care of and overcoming benefit denials. The ombudsman also helps to hold health care providers, including home health and in-home care workers, responsible in cases of abuse or neglect.

(800) 838-5845

Entire State

The Alabama Area Agencies on Aging are located throughout the state and offer a number of resources to older residents to help them remain in their homes despite physical limitations. These 13 agencies can connect seniors with free and low-cost assistance programs and services that provide anything from meal delivery to transportation to social support.

(251) 344-4737

Entire State

Alabama seniors and state residents who are permanently and totally disabled are eligible for an exemption from the state portion of their property taxes. This tax benefit can ease the financial burden on seniors wishing to age in place. The Alabama Department of Revenue is available to answer questions about tax benefits for seniors who own homes in the state.

(888) 421-1266

Entire State

211 Connects Alabama program connects seniors with transportation assistance programs throughout the state. The website provides links and contact information to senior ride programs in various regions of Alabama.

(334) 279-3400

Entire State

The U.S. Department of Agriculture administers the Section 504 Home Repair program, which offers grants and low-cost loans to elderly and low-income homeowners in Alabama to remove safety hazards.

COVID-19 Rules for In-Home Care Providers in Alabama

In-home care and home health care providers in Alabama are required to be vaccinated for COVID-19 unless they receive a medical or religious exemption. While the vaccine requirement for home health workers in Alabama remains in effect as of April 2022, the situation can change quickly to meet public needs. Check with local health officials for the latest information. The Area Agencies on Aging are an excellent resource for the most up-to-date information on the state’s COVID-19 policies for in-home care and home health care workers. As well, you should contact your specific care agency to find out what their current policies are.

In-Home Care Laws and Regulations in Alabama

Home health agencies (HHAs) are not required to be licensed in the state of Alabama, so regulations can be somewhat flexible. However, many agencies choose to become certified to provide Medicare and Medicaid services. These HHAs are overseen by the Alabama Department of Public Health.

In-Home Care Laws and Regulations in Alabama
Scope of Care
Home care agencies provide assistance with daily tasks and companionship services. Licensed staff may provide occupational therapy, physical therapy and speech therapy. Registered nurses may perform skilled nursing tasks, including wound care, post-surgical care and intravenous therapy.
Care Plan Requirements
There are no specific care plan requirements for home health agencies in Alabama.
Medication Management Requirements
Registered nurses may dispense medications, and other aides may assist clients with self-administration.
Staff Screening Requirements
There are no specific staff screening requirements for home health agencies in Alabama.
Staff Training Requirements
Aides have no training requirements. Certified nursing aides and registered nurses must keep their licenses current and follow all licensing requirements.
Medicaid Coverage
The Elderly and Disabled Waiver program may cover some or all home care expenses if the services are provided by a state-certified agency.
Reporting Abuse
Abuse should be reported to the state ElderCare hotline at 1-800-356-9596. It can also be reported to a long-term care ombudsman, which can be done in-person, by phone or by mail at any Area Agency on Aging.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Much Does In-Home Care Cost in Alabama?

The cost of home care varies depending on the amount of care needed, but homemaker services in Alabama cost about $3,394 a month on average, according to Genworth’s 2019 Cost of Care Survey. Home health care costs a little more, averaging $3,432 monthly.

Does Alabama Medicaid pay for in-home care?

Alabama Medicaid recipients who want to have home care covered need to receive a home and community-based waiver, such as the Elderly and Disabled Waiver. Seniors who qualify for the Personal Choices program can also use their monthly allowance to pay for in-home care. For Medicaid coverage to apply, the home health agency must be Medicare/Medicaid certified.

Are there transportation assistance programs in Alabama?

There are no government-sponsored or statewide transportation programs in Alabama. However, local charities do provide these services in some areas, such as Senior Ride in the greater Birmingham area. Some cities with public transportation also offer discounted bus fares and paratransit services.

What does it mean to age in place?

Aging in place means that a senior citizen is able to remain in their own home for as long as possible, even as their needs begin to change. This is typically accomplished by changing the home to suit the senior’s needs, such as by installing ramps for seniors with mobility issues. Many seniors also rely on home care providers during this time.

What are “Activities of Daily Living”?

“Activities of daily living” is a general term used to describe basic self-care routines that allow people to live independently. These include bathing and grooming, getting dressed, preparing and eating food, and using the toilet. Transferring between sitting, standing and reclining is also included, as is being able to move around freely and safely.

How to Find an In-Home Care Provider in Alabama

Whether you are looking for yourself or a loved one, finding a quality home care provider can be a stressful process. When you hire an in-home care aide you’re placing a lot of trust in the hands of the person by inviting them into your home, so you’ll want to be diligent in your search. At Caring.com, we’re here to help – we’ve created a helpful checklist below that can help guide you through the process of both determining your needs and finding a home care agency that will provide the best care possible.

Finding a Home Care Provider Checklist

Find Home Care Agencies Near You

To find quality home care providers near you, simply input the zip code or city where you would like to start your search. We have an extensive directory of home care agencies all across the nation that includes in-depth information about each provider and hundreds of thousands of reviews from seniors and their loved ones.

2018, 2021, 2022

SYNERGY HomeCare of Opelika

3320 Skyway Dr., Ste. 806, Opelika, AL, 36801

They do everything for me, I am fine. I would like them to send us a schedule so I know who is coming over.
They do everything for me, I am fine. I would like them to send us a schedule so I know who is coming over.

2019, 2021, 2022

Right at Home Montgomery Metro

7121 Halcyon Park Drive, Montgomery, AL, 36117

His quality of life has improved a lot with the services. The people that work here are very good.
His quality of life has improved a lot with the services. The people that work here are very good.

2020

Home Care Assistance of Montgomery

7742 Vaughn Rd, Montgomery, AL, 36116

My family used Home Care Assistance when it became apparent that my Mother needed extra help. Home Care Assistance was able to match my Mother with the perfect caregiver for her. The lady who was th … (read more)
My family used Home Care Assistance when it became apparent that my Mother needed extra help. Home Care Assistance was able to match my Mother with the perfect caregiver for her. The lady who was th … (read more)

Home Instead – Montgomery, AL

2520 Fairlane Dr, Suite 340, Montgomery, AL, 36116

Home Instead took care of my mother in the last 2 months of her life. They provided personnel to sit with her at home & help her to the restroom. They did an outstanding job of providing interacti … (read more)
Home Instead took care of my mother in the last 2 months of her life. They provided personnel to sit with her at home & help her to the restroom. They did an outstanding job of providing interacti … (read more)

Helping Hands Home Care Agency

7004 Vaughn Road, Montgomery, AL, 36116

Excellent staff. Very professional. Reasonably priced. The administrator answered all questions to our satisfaction and we felt very comfortable putting our loved one in their care. I would definitely … (read more)
Excellent staff. Very professional. Reasonably priced. The administrator answered all questions to our satisfaction and we felt very comfortable putting our loved one in their care. I would definitely … (read more)

Visiting Angels

2569 Bell Road, Montgomery, AL, 36117

If I could give this company lower than a one star rating, I would. I would tell everyone that is looking at Visiting Angels to be careful and make sure they can do what you need them to do. If you wa … (read more)
If I could give this company lower than a one star rating, I would. I would tell everyone that is looking at Visiting Angels to be careful and make sure they can do what you need them to do. If you wa … (read more)

Addus HomeCare

1037 22nd St South, Ste 101, PO Box 8, Montgomery, AL, 36116


Home Helpers of Prattville

P.O. Box 681681, Prattville, AL, 36068


ResCare HomeCare

2421 Presidents Drive, Montgomery, AL, 36116


All Saints Home Health Care

2027 Longleaf Drive, Birmingham, AL, 35216



Astin Home Care

1501 Mulberry St , Montgomery, AL, 36106


SYNERGY HomeCare of Montgomery

540 Clay Street , Montgomery, AL, 36104




Your Choice Senior Care – Montgomery, AL

2740 Central Pkwy Suite 12 , Montgomery, AL, 36106


Home Care Services in Alabama (147)