The 10 Best In-Home Care Services in Chattanooga, TN for 2023
On par with Tennessee state and national averages, Chattanooga residents aged 65 or older account for approximately 16.6% of the population. A significant number of older adults helps ensure funding for senior programs and resources. The area also offers access to nine nearby hospitals, including Erlanger Health Center. Affiliated with the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, the hospital provides emergency treatment and numerous specialty centers, including cancer, orthopedics, and heart and lung. The 2021 Genworth Cost of Care Survey reports that Chattanooga’s monthly in-home care rates average $4,767, which is within $200 of average state and nation monthly costs.
Below we’ve compiled a comprehensive directory of every home care provider in the Chattanooga area – complete with services offered and reviews from families who’ve actually used the service. In addition to our in-depth provider listings, we’ve compiled resources to help seniors and their families to access all the tools they need to age in place safely and gracefully.
Directory of Home Care Services in Chattanooga, TN
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Paying for Home Care in Chattanooga, TN
The Cost of Home Care in Chattanooga, TN
Seniors in Chattanooga pay an average of $4,767 per month for in-home care, which is approximately $200 more than the state’s median and $200 less than the nation’s. Chattanooga’s costs are equal to Nashville and $10 more than Knoxville’s monthly rates. Johnson City and Memphis represent the low end of Tennessee’s average costs, at $4,004 and $4,242, respectively.
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The Cost of Home Care vs. Other Senior Care Options in Chattanooga, TN
At $1,733 per month, adult day health care is the most affordable long-term care option in Chattanooga. In-home care provided by nonmedical staff is approximately $20 more than the $4,744 average monthly rates for home health care services administered by medical professionals. Assisted living communities offer seniors residential options to help them manage daily activities. Their monthly median is $4,220. A semiprivate room in a skilled nursing facility provides 24/7 comprehensive care, but it’s one of the costliest choices in Chattanooga, averaging approximately $2,500 per month more than in-home care.
Home Health Care
Adult Day Health Care
Nursing Home Care (semiprivate room)
Financial Assistance for Home Care in Chattanooga, TN
Given the high cost of in-home care, many people use one or more forms of financial assistance to cover the expenses. Below, we explain some of the most common sources of financial help for paying for in-home care. If none of these options are available to you, you can reach out to your Area Agency on Aging or Aging and Disability Resource Center to learn about local resources.
- Long-Term Care Insurance: Long-Term Care Insurance covers expenses related to senior care, including in-home care. Depending on the policy type, beneficiaries may receive a cash payment to use towards long-term care or reimbursement for qualifying long-term care expenses. Note that there are limitations- typically a maximum benefit of $150 per day- and exact coverage terms vary depending on the exact policy, so always check the details.
- Medicare: Medicare does not cover in-home care because it is classified as custodial, or non-medical, care. However, some Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplement plans, which offer expanded benefits, may cover in-home custodial care.
- Medicaid: Medicaid coverage of in-home care varies between different states because it is not a federally mandated benefit. Currently, all states cover some in-home care either through their standard Medicaid or a waiver program. The specific coverage rules are set individually by each state.
- Veterans’ Benefits: The Aid and Attendance benefit is a monthly cash payment that beneficiaries can use to pay for senior care, including in-home care services. To qualify for A&A, Veterans must already receive the VA pension and meet several additional requirements, including needing assistance with the activities of daily living.Contact the Department of Veterans Affairs to learn more.
- Reverse Mortgages: Home Equity Conversion Mortgages (HECMs) are federally insured loans that are available to homeowners age 62 and over. Reverse mortgages allow you to access a portion of your home’s equity in cash, tax free. Many seniors use reverse mortgages to finance their care expenses, including in-home care. Note that although there are no monthly payments due on reverse mortgage loans, borrowers do have to repay the loan once the last surviving homeowner passes away, moves, or sells the home.
Free & Low-Cost Home Care Resources in Chattanooga, TN
Chattanooga seniors have access to many free and low-cost resources designed to help them continue to live safely and independently in their own homes. Programs may provide food, transportation, in-home care, assistance with utility bills, legal aid and home repairs. Families can contact the agencies below to learn more about what’s available.
The organization's knowledgeable specialists help seniors and their families access the resources and programs that best meet their needs. The agency offers caregiver support, home-delivered meals, in-home care services, legal aid and chronic disease management.
Veterans Service Officers help senior veterans and their families navigate the application process for a variety of state and federal benefits, including service-connected compensation, health care eligibility, mental health treatment, housing assistance and survivor benefits.
Federally funded through the Department of Health and Human Services, LIHEAP is designed to help senior and disabled residents pay their utility bills. Individuals who meet eligibility guidelines may receive up to $325 for summer cooling and $250 for winter heating costs.
Determining Your Loved One’s Need for In-Home Care
Aging can be a difficult process, and loved ones may not always ask for help – often times it’s up to their family to evaluate their need for help around the house. While no two situations are exactly alike, this checklist can help you and your loved ones determine when it’s time to start the search for a home care provider.
Guidelines for Talking About In-Home Care
If you’ve determined that your loved one needs the assistance of a care provider in their home, it may be time for a difficult conversation. Handled correctly, however, this process can bring a family together and ensure that everyone’s concerns are addressed. Use this PDF as a starting point to help the conversation stay as positive and productive as possible.
Frequently Asked Questions
With the assistance of an in-home care professional, seniors may remain independent in their own homes for as long as possible. However, not all home care agencies are created equal. It pays to thoroughly research the options to find a reputable agency and responsible caregivers. The best place to begin is by asking for referrals from trusted professionals, such as nurses and doctors, and friends. Southeast Tennessee’s Area Agency on Aging and the United Way of Greater Chattanooga could also offer insight into reliable providers.
There are approximately 18 home care agencies that serve Chattanooga and the surrounding areas. In addition, Caring.com estimates that seniors may choose from approximately 12 home health care agencies to assist with medical needs.
It’s important to first determine individual need and level of care before figuring how to pay for in-home care. Some services, such as those deemed medically necessary, may be covered through private health insurance plans, Medicaid or the VA. However, costs for non-medical caregivers are typically funded through private savings or other personal assets. Local volunteer programs and service agencies could also assist with specific needs, such as home repairs, meals and transportation.
The IRS Publication 502 outlines several circumstances in which in-home elderly care may be tax deductible. A key component to determining how expenses are itemized is by identifying the employer of the agency. Tax deductions vary depending on whether the in-home care provider is employed by the senior resident or an adult child claiming the senior as a dependent. Medical and dependent care could be qualifying tax-deductible expenses.
Provided on a physician’s recommendation, palliative care through hospice begins as soon as possible with a social worker or admissions nurse consulting with the family, typically in the home, to assess patient needs, develop a plan and recommend a team of care providers. In addition to the physician and nursing staff, the team may include a bereavement counselor, social worker, spiritual advisor and caregiver support. Hospice care includes prescribed medications and medical equipment. Its team focuses on making the patient as comfortable as possible and supporting family members.