Wyoming is known as a great place to retire and spend life’s golden years. Just over 578,000 residents call Wyoming home, and more than 17% of those living here are seniors aged 65 and older. Furthermore, more than 10,000 seniors in Wyoming were living with Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia as of 2020, and by 2025, that number is expected to increase to 13,000, an increase of 30%. Sadly, an estimated 238 Wyoming seniors die from Alzheimer’s disease each year, making it the fifth-leading cause of death in the state.

Wyoming has a seasonal climate, making it a great location for seniors who appreciate mild summers and snowy winters. The state is tax-friendly for seniors, as it doesn’t tax any form of retirement income, including Social Security benefits. The cost of living in Wyoming is lower overall than the U.S. average; however, healthcare costs are more than 30% higher. Those who need residential memory care services in Wyoming typically pay about $5,211 per month.

Memory care can be offered on its own in a community designed especially for those with dementia or Alzheimer’s, but it’s more often provided as a service in a separate wing of an assisted living facility. Memory care programs are designed specifically for those with memory impairment, and the facilities often coordinate social activities and schedules specifically for the needs of those living with Alzheimer’s or dementia.

This guide provides an overview of the cost of residential memory care in Wyoming, including comparisons to costs of other types of long-term care throughout the state. Additionally, details regarding how to pay for memory care and regulations these programs must adhere to are outlined below.

The Cost of Memory Care in Wyoming

Note: Assisted living facilities typically provide memory care services. The rates for memory care are generally 20-30% higher than those for assisted living. Because there is no trusted data available that tracks memory care costs, we’ve estimated them by increasing assisted living rates provided by the Genworth 2021 Cost of Care Survey by 25%.

At an average of $5,211 per month, the cost of memory care in Wyoming is about mid-range when compared with other states in the area. While Montana ($5,563) and Colorado ($5,937) are more expensive than Wyoming, memory care costs in Utah ($4,375), Nebraska ($5,095) and Idaho ($4,798) are more affordable.

$5211

Wyoming

$5625

The United States

$5563

Montana

$4798

Idaho

$4375

Utah

$5937

Colorado

$5095

Nebraska

Memory care rates vary dramatically throughout Wyoming, with seniors in the Casper area paying an average of $6,055 per month and those in Cheyenne paying a much higher rate of $6,923. Nearby in Idaho Falls, Idaho, seniors pay much less at $4,375 per month, while the same can be said for those in Rapid City, South Dakota, where the cost is an average of $4,893 monthly. In Denver, Colorado, the monthly cost is similar to Cheyenne’s at $6,875 per month. 

$6055

Casper

$6923

Cheyenne

$4375

Idaho Falls, Idaho

$6875

Denver, Colorado

$4893

Rapid City, South Dakota

There are several options for long-term care in Wyoming. While memory care is one option, assisted living is a less-expensive option at $4,169, making it an attractive choice for seniors who don’t live with memory loss. Those who are capable of living at home can access home care or home health care services for $5,529 per month; alternatively, they can choose to rely on the help of adult day health care facilities at an average cost of $1,733 per month. Seniors who need full-time medical care should consider a nursing home, which carries an average monthly cost of $6,996 for a semiprivate room or $7,535 for a private room.

$1733

Adult Day Health Care

$4169

Assisted Living

$5529

Home Care

$5529

Home Health Care

$5211

Memory Care

$6996

Nursing Home (semiprivate)

$7535

Nursing Home (private)

Does Medicaid Cover Memory Care in Wyoming?

Note: For the purposes of this guide, when we say “Memory Care” we are referring to memory care provided in a “social setting,” such as an Assisted Living Facility. This is the most common way to receive Memory Care and is the best fit for all but the frailest seniors. Sometimes the actual service of memory care can be provided in a Nursing Home (“medical setting”), so the financial assistance options will be very different. To learn more about the financial assistance options available for memory care provided in a nursing home, read our guide to Nursing Home Care in Wyoming.

Wyoming’s Medicaid program doesn’t directly cover memory care or assisted living for seniors. However, seniors living with cognitive decline may be able to access some assistance under the state’s Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) waivers

Community Choices Waiver

The Community Choices Waiver helps eligible seniors pay for supportive services, including nonmedical transportation, meal assistance and personal care. While this waiver is intended to help those living in their own homes, some services may be accessible to those who reside in community homes and facilities. 

This waiver is available exclusively to seniors aged 65 and older and those with disabilities who qualify for Social Security Income (SSI). 

Supports Waiver

This waiver is available to Medicaid beneficiaries of all ages who are living with intellectual disabilities. It provides a monetary payment to its participants to help them cover the cost of supportive care and other health-related services. 

Comprehensive Waiver

Disabled persons of all ages who are facing an emergency situation can access this waiver, which provides urgent care, including personal care and supportive services, to those who need it. 

To apply for any of the above HCBS waivers in Wyoming, seniors can call (855) 294-2127 or use the state’s online portal.

Does Medicare Cover Memory Care in Wyoming?

The short answer is that no, Medicare does not cover the cost of memory care in Wyoming. As was mentioned above, this doesn’t apply to Memory Care received in a Nursing Home. Since it is the most common to receive memory care in a “social setting” (such as an assisted living facility), Medicare won’t be a viable financial assistance option for most seniors who need Memory Care. However, Medicare will still cover things like approved medications, doctor visits, medical equipment, etc., just like it would if you lived at home.

For more information about when Medicare can be used to pay for Memory Care in a nursing home, and for Medicare-related resources, see our guide to Nursing Homes in Wyoming.

Other Financial Assistance Options for Memory Care in Wyoming

Seniors who are not eligible (due to location, financial situation, or other factors) for other types of financial assistance, do still have some options. See the table below for an overview of some of the most common ways to make Memory Care affordable.

How to Apply

How It Works

Aid and Attendance

Learn more and apply online at va.gov.

Veterans who receive a VA pension may also be eligible for the Aid and Attendance benefit, a monthly cash allowance that veterans receive in addition to their standard pension amount. The benefit is intended for veterans in need of long-term care services and may be used toward paying for Memory Care.

Reverse Mortgages

Learn more about your options and how to apply at ftc.gov

If you own a home, you may be able to use a reverse mortgage to help pay for Memory Care. Reverse mortgages are loans that one can take out against the value of their home, essentially converting some of the home's equity into cash. Reverse mortgage loans do need to be repaid with interest, typically within 12 months of receiving the loan.

Long-Term Care (LTC) Insurance

Learn more about Long-Term Care Insurance and how to apply for a policy at acl.gov.

Seniors who already have long-term care insurance may be able to use it to pay for Memory Care. Most policies cover at least a portion of the cost, but it depends on the specific policy terms. Note that older adults who are already in need of Memory Care will not typically be eligible to sign up for a LTC insurance policy.

Free and Low-Cost Resources for Seniors in Wyoming

Seniors who need memory care and other services in Wyoming can reach out to the organizations below. These include programs that provide assistance in accessing residential care, as well as those that offer free help to seniors who are facing memory problems or other health-related issues.

Program 

Contact

Services Provided

1-807-777-7986

Acting as the state's Area Agency on Aging, the Aging Division helps seniors connect with local resources that can provide housing, meal assistance, counseling, caregiver training, respite care and other necessary supports.

307-777-2885

The long-term care ombudsman helps those living in residential care ensure they're treated with dignity and that their rights are preserved, regardless of their cognitive or health condition. Seniors or their caregivers can submit complaints to this department, which will investigate to determine if violations of local, state or national regulations have been made and will help all parties achieve an agreeable resolution.

1-800-856-4398

Wyoming Senior Citizens is a nonprofit organization that helps seniors access local resources. It also facilitates a senior companion program, designed to help seniors socialize and maintain independence, and it operates the State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP), which guides seniors and caregivers through interactions with Medicare.

2-1-1 or (888) 425-7138

2-1-1 connects Wyoming residents with resources that can provide food, healthcare, transportation housing and other necessities of life. 

307-316-2892

The Alzheimer's Association provides counseling and support for seniors living with Alzheimer's. It also provides caregiver training and helps those who need it to access supportive housing and respite care.

COVID-19 Rules for Memory Care in Wyoming

The following information is based on research done on several government websites, including health.wyo.gov. These rules apply to nursing homes and other types of senior living facilities. We’ve most recently updated this data on 2/15/2022, but since COVID-19 is a rapidly evolving pandemic, contact your local senior living facility or Area Agency on Aging for more specific and up-to-date information.

Visitation Policies

Rules for Wyoming Communities

Are loved ones allowed to visit to provide emotional support?

Yes (Conditions Apply)

Are relatives allowed to visit for end-of-life care?

Yes

Are residents required to quarantine after visiting with a loved one?

No

Are visitors required to wear PPE (including masks) in order to visit residents?

Yes

Are non-medical contractors (such as hairdressers and entertainers) allowed in senior living facilities?

Yes

Are visitors checked for elevated temperatures?

Yes

Are visitors required to answer questions about health, travel, and potential virus contact?

Yes

Outings & Social Activities

Rules for Wyoming Communities

Are residents allowed to leave (errands, visiting family, etc.) for non-medical reasons?

Yes

Are residents who leave required to quarantine when they return?

No (Conditions Apply)

Are senior living communities required to cancel all group outings?

No

Are residents allowed to eat meals together in a common area?

Yes (Conditions Apply)

Are residents allowed to gather in common areas for group activites?

Yes (Conditions Apply)

COVID-19 Safety Measures for Staff and Residents

Rules for Wyoming Communities

Are staff members regularly required to do a temperature check?

Yes

Are staff members regularly tested for COVID-19?

Yes (Conditions Apply)

Are staff members members regularly required to do a health and safety screening, including questions about travel, contact with positive cases, etc?

Yes

Are residents regularly screened for COVID-19 symptoms?

Yes

Are residents regularly checked for elevated temperatures?

Yes

Are residents regularly tested for COVID-19?

Yes (Conditions Apply)

Memory Care Laws and Regulations in Wyoming

Memory care facilities in Wyoming are licensed and regulated by the Wyoming Department of Health, Office of Healthcare Licensing and Surveys. Memory care services are available in Level 1 and Level 2 facilities throughout the state, although most memory care programs hold a Level 2 license.

Memory Care Laws and Regulations in Wyoming

Scope of Care

Memory care programs may admit and retain residents who require 24/7 supervision and support due to Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia. Individuals who need around-the-clock skilled nursing care, continuous assistance with activities of daily living, or who present a danger to themselves or others due to aggressive behavior may not be admitted to a Level 1 or Level 2 facility.

Care Plan Requirements

A registered nurse must complete a pre-admission assessment on potential residents, while Level 2 facilities must complete a Mini-Mental State Exam on residents who are being considered for placement on a secure memory care unit. These assessments are used to create customized care plans which are reviewed at least once per year, or more frequently if the resident experiences significant health or behavioral changes.

Medication Management Requirements

Unlicensed staff may assist with the self-administration of oral medications by providing reminders, opening medication containers and reading prescription labels under the supervision of a registered nurse. Only a registered or licensed practical nurse may administer medications to residents who are unable to self-administer, and all medications must be reviewed by a registered nurse every 60 days or less.

Staff Screening Requirements

Staff who have direct contact with residents are required to pass a Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation background check with fingerprinting, as well as a Department of Family Services central registry check.

Staff Training Requirements

Level 2 facilities must have a licensed practical nurse on site at all times, and a registered nurse must be available either on-site or by phone. Staff must complete a minimum of 12 hours of memory care training annually.

Medicaid Coverage

Wyoming’s Community Choices waiver program covers care costs for eligible assisted living facility residents, although residents are responsible for their own room and board costs.

Reporting Abuse

Concerns regarding the quality of care in a memory care facility can be reported to the Wyoming Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program at (307) 777-2885. Anyone who witnesses the abuse, neglect or exploitation of a vulnerable person should contact local law enforcement authorities.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Much Does Memory Care Cost in Wyoming?

The statewide average cost of Wyoming memory care services is $4,725, although actual costs may be higher or lower depending on the location, amenities and services offered.

Does Wyoming Medicaid Pay for Memory Care?

Yes. Wyoming’s Community Choices waiver provides memory care services for beneficiaries who can safely reside in a non-institutional setting such as an assisted living or memory care community.

What Security Features Are Present in Memory Care Facilities?

An estimated 60% of those living with Alzheimer’s disease wander, therefore, memory care facilities usually have security features designed to help keep residents safe and secure. Some facilities use a system called WanderGuard which allows caregivers to monitor the location of each resident through a wireless medical alert pendant or watch-style device. Delayed-egress exterior exit doors, enclosed courtyards and fenced outdoor areas are also commonly found at these facilities.

What Are Activities of Daily Living?

Activities of daily living are the tasks everyone needs to perform daily in order to maintain basic health and personal hygiene. Also referred to as ADLs, activities of daily living include using the toilet, bathing and grooming, getting dressed and moving about.

What Types of Services Does Memory Care Provide?

Residential memory care facilities provide room and board in a setting that’s specially-designed to meet the needs of those living with dementia. Services also include 24/7 support and supervision, daily recreational and social programming, and some assistance with activities of daily living.

Memory Care Facilities in Wyoming (2)