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In-Home Care in Virginia

The Commonwealth of Virginia was home to more than 1.3 million adults aged 65 and older in 2021, and the population of seniors 60 and older is expected to grow to 24% by 2030. The state is appealing to retirees due to its combination of big-city amenities, beach communities, beautiful landscapes and warm weather. Virginia is also considered one of the best states for health care. It has four nationally ranked hospitals, including the University of Virginia Medical Center and Inova Fairfax Hospital.

Virginia’s great health care is complemented by an array of home care services resources to help seniors live at home while promoting their health, dignity and independence. In-home care is a nonclinical service that helps seniors with their daily activities, such as housekeeping, meal preparation and grooming. It costs an average of $4,767 per month. Home health care is a clinical service provided by a skilled nurse or other medical professionals. Due to this higher level of care, this service costs $4,954 per month.

This guide compares the cost of home care in Virginia with nearby states and with other types of available care. It also covers how to pay for services and resources available to seniors throughout the state.

The Cost of In-Home Care in Virginia

According to the Genworth Cost of Care Survey for 2021, the average cost of home care in Virginia is $4,767 per month, which is about $200 less than the national average. Compared to other states in the Midatlantic region, the Commonwealth has relatively inexpensive rates. Both Delaware ($5,339) and Maryland ($5,148) have median prices higher than $5,000, and Pennsylvania is not far behind with a monthly average of $4,957. North Carolina has an average rate of $4,385. Inland in the Appalachian country, Kentucky ($4,767) and West Virginia ($3,527) have home care costs lower than Virginia.

Virginia

$4767

The United States

$4957

North Carolina

$4385

West Virginia

$3527

Maryland

$5148

Delaware

$5339

Pennsylvania

$4957

Kentucky

$4767

Economically, Virginia is a diverse state with a wide range of home care costs. Lynchburg ($4,185) has the most affordable prices, and Charlottesville ($6,292) has the most expensive. Fairfax County, which is part of the Washington D.C. suburbs, has an average rate of $5,339. Only the state capital, Richmond, has more expensive home care costs. Blacksburg and Winchester have similar median prices. In Virginia Beach, which includes the Norfolk area, the average rate for home care is identical to the state average.

Richmond

$5148

Virginia Beach

$4767

Winchester

$4671

Lynchburg

$4185

Charlottesville

$6292

Washington D.C.

$5339

Blacksburg

$4957

In Virginia, in-home care costs $4,767, and home health care costs $4,954. These costs account for 40 hours of service per week. A possible alternative to home health care is adult day health care, which is much less expensive at an average of $1,690. Assisted living facilities also provide help with daily activities in a community setting, and they cost an average of $5,250 per month. Seniors who require a high degree of medical attention and supervision pay an average of $8,213 per month for nursing homes.

In-Home Care

$4767

Home Health Care

$4954

Adult Day Health Care

$1690

Assisted Living

$5250

Nursing Home

$8213

Does Medicaid Cover Home Care in Virginia?

Yes, Medicaid in Virginia can cover the cost of some home care services for seniors who require a nursing home level of care. State and federal funds reimburse home care providers through a 1915 (c) waiver program called Commonwealth Coordinated Care Plus (CCC). It covers personal care, respite, private duty nursing and transition services. Since this is not an entitlement program under standard Virginia Medicaid, you are subject to some service limitations.

Home Care Waiver Programs in Virginia

Commonwealth Coordinated Care Plus (CCC)

The CCC waiver program pays for home care services so that seniors at risk for nursing facilities or other specialized care placement can stay in their own homes. The program pays for personal emergency response systems, assistive technology, private duty nursing, environmental modifications and transition services. It also covers agency and consumer-directed personal care services. There is a soft cap of 56 hours per week for personal care services and 112 hours per week for private duty nursing. 

To be eligible for the CCC program, you must complete a screening that demonstrates your need for a nursing home level of care and your ability to receive care within your home safely. In addition, the critical services provided by the program must be the factor that keeps you from being placed in a nursing facility. The CCC program provides care for about 40,000 seniors in Virginia every year. 

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

Apart from the CCC screening, Medicaid beneficiaries must not exceed certain income and asset limits. A single applicant can earn no more than $30,276 per year or own more than $2,000 in assets, excluding the home where they live. Married couples applying for coverage cannot earn more than $60,552 and own more than $4,000. 

2022 Medicaid Income Limits for Seniors in Virginia

2022 Basic Medicaid Income Limits for Seniors in Virginia

NameIncome limits*Asset limits
Single Person$30,276$2,000
Two-Person Household$60,552$4,000

*Per year

Virginia Medicaid also requires each applicant to:

  • Be citizens of the U.S. or documented legal residents
  • Be residents of Virginia
  • Have a Social Security Number

How to Apply for Medicaid in Virginia

You can apply for Virginia Medicaid in three different ways. Fill out an online application by visiting the CommonHelp website at any time. Apply over the phone by calling the Cover Virginia Call Center at (888) 221-1590, Monday through Friday, or print an application and fill it out by hand, then mail it or drop it off at the nearest Department of Social Services location.

What Information You Will Need

When applying for Medicaid using any method, you’ll be required to provide some personal information. This includes:

  • Address, phone numbers and other contact information for you and other household members
  • Social Security number
  • Bank and other financial statements
  • Deeds, trusts and other records of assets
  • Record of all asset transfers within the past five years
  • Information about other health insurance policies you may have

How to Get Help Applying for Medicaid

If you or someone you know needs help applying for Medicaid coverage, you can contact the following resources for assistance:

ProgramContactAreaServedServices provided
Virginia CommonHelp(833) 522-5582Entire StateIn partnership with the Virginia Department of Social Services, Virginia CommonHelp provides Medicaid application assistance online or over the phone. You can also check the status of your application and renew your benefits. Offices are located throughout the state.
Benefits.govOnline OnlyEntire StateVisit Benefits.gov to learn if you or your loved one qualify for Medicaid coverage and find out the best way for you to apply for benefits. The site also provides detailed information about other programs that may pay for products or services seniors get at home.
Project ConnectList of LocationsMost of the StateFunding from the state and the federal government helps the Virginia Health Care Foundation (VHCA) run Project Connect, an outreach program that assists seniors and families with their Medicaid applications. Agents work one-on-one with applicants and help them gather the information needed to qualify for coverage.

Does Medicare Cover In-Home Care in Virginia?

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 Virginia

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 Virginia

Virginia seniors have access to an array of free and low-cost resources that can improve their lives. Several of these resources can save homeowners money to afford home care services. 

ResourceContactAreaServedService
Tax Relief for Older Virginians(804) 367-8031Most Cities and CountiesMost cities and counties in Virginia offer tax exemptions and/or tax deferrals for homeowners aged 65 and older. The relief amount depends on your income and total net worth. To take advantage of property tax relief in your area, contact your local tax assessor. The state government also offers additional income tax savings for seniors.
Senior Cool Care(800) 552-3402Dominion Energy's Service AreaThe Senior Cool Care program keeps older adults living at home comfortable during the hot summer months by providing fans and single-room air conditioners to low-income homeowners. To qualify for this service, you must be 60 or older and at or below 150% of the federal poverty line. This program is operated locally by the Area Agency on Aging serving your community.
AARP Virginia(866) 542-8164Entire StateThe AARP is a valuable source of information and support for seniors and families in Virginia who need care at home. It offers support groups, educational seminars and local events in addition to its abundance of online resources. It also advocates for the rights and interests of seniors throughout the state. AARP's low-cost membership provides additional rewards and discounts that Virginia seniors can use to save money on products and services they already use.
Senior Legal Helpline(844) 802-5910StatewideOlder adults throughout Virginia can call the toll-free Statewide Senior Legal Helpline to get assistance with many topics, including public benefits, age discrimination, financial exploitation, long-term care and home care. Representatives can guide callers toward common legal solutions for seniors who receive in-home care, such as advanced medical directives, wills and trusts, powers of attorney and guardianship.
Home Modification Loans(866) 835-5976StatewideSenior homeowners in Virginia can get low-cost loans to make modifications to their property to continue living there comfortably. Loans can be used to build ramps, guardrails, lifts and other accessibility improvements. To be eligible, you must be a resident of Virginia and have a disability or live with someone who has a major impairment. This loan program is an authority of the Commonwealth of Virginia. Borrowers with low credit or no credit history are considered.

In-Home Care Laws and Regulations in Virginia

The Virginia Department of Health – Office of Licensure and Certification is responsible for the licensing and oversight of home care organizations operating in the state. Any organization that provides hands-on personal care to clients, such as assistance with bathing, grooming, ambulation or eating, must be licensed. The office also investigates any complaints filed against providers and conducts unannounced on-site inspections to ensure compliance with state regulations. The table that follows offers an overview of the rules and regulations governing home care organizations in Virginia.

TopicRule
Scope of CareHome care organizations may offer various nonmedical services to seniors, including assistance with the five activities of daily living and medication self-administration. Homemaker tasks, such as preparing meals, performing household chores, accompanying seniors to appointments and running errands may also be provided.
Care Plan RequirementsOrganizations must provide each senior receiving personal care services with a written care plan developed by an RN. This plan must include an assessment of the client's needs, their functional limitations and special dietary requirements, along with the specific services provided and their frequency.
Medication Management RequirementsHome care aides may provide reminders and assist seniors with the self-administration of physician-prescribed medications.
Staff Screening RequirementsA criminal background check must be obtained for new staff members within 30 days of employment. Until the report is received, the person may not work directly with clients, unless under the supervision of another employee.
Staff Training RequirementsHome care aides who provide personal care services must have completed a nurse aide education course or passed a state-approved competency evaluation program. Aides must also complete a minimum of 12 hours of ongoing training annually.
Medicaid CoverageVirginia Medicaid may cover the cost of in-home care services for eligible seniors through either the Commonwealth Coordinated Care Plus waiver or the PACE program.
Reporting AbuseVirginia's Adult Protective Services Division investigates reports of neglect, exploitation and abuse of adults aged 60 and over. Concerned individuals can report an incident by calling the APS hotline at 888-832-3858, or contacting the nearest Department of Social Services office.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to Find an In-Home Care Provider in Virginia

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.

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Finding a Home Care Provider Checklist
Finding a Home Care Provider Checklist

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Caring.com

Caring.com is a leading online destination for caregivers seeking information and support as they care for aging parents, spouses, and other loved ones. We offer thousands of original articles, helpful tools, advice from more than 50 leading experts, a community of caregivers, and a comprehensive directory of caregiving services.

 

The material on this site is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for legal, financial, professional, or medical advice or diagnosis or treatment. By using our website, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy

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