Memory Care in Wyoming
Alzheimer’s disease is a growing health crisis in America. There’s currently an estimated 5.8 million people living with dementia, and that number is projected to grow to 13.8 million by 2050. In Wyoming, about 10,000 seniors aged 65 and older have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, and the disease was listed as the primary cause of death for 151 Wyomingites in 2015.
Supporting a loved one who has Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia can be exceptionally taxing on families, particularly since memory loss tends to worsen over time. Thankfully, there’s a growing number of memory care programs in Wyoming that provide specialized supervision and support to Alzheimer’s patients. These programs often offer specialized therapies and treatments to help slow the progression of symptoms associated with dementia while providing families with much-needed relief from caregiving duties.
Memory care can either be offered on its own in a community designed especially for those with dementia or Alzheimer’s, or, more often, it’s 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 memory care in Wyoming, including care costs and financial assistance programs for those who need help paying for Alzheimer’s care. There’s also a list of services for people living with memory loss, a summary of the state memory care regulations, and answers to the most frequently-asked questions about Wyoming memory care services.
The Cost of Memory Care in Wyoming
Residential memory care services tend to cost about 20-30% more than assisted living does. To determine memory care costs in Wyoming, we’ve added 25% to the assisted living costs documented in Genworth’s 2019 Cost of Care Survey. The statewide average cost of residential memory care in Wyoming is $4,725 per month, which is below the national average of $5,064.
Memory Care Costs in Nearby States
At an average monthly cost of $4,725, the cost of memory care in Wyoming is below the national average of $5,064 and comparable to costs in the region. Costs in South Dakota ($4,375) and Idaho ($4,660) are slightly lower than in Wyoming, while costs in Montana ($4,775) and Colorado ($5,119) are slightly higher.
The United States
Cost of Other Types of Care in Wyoming
Seniors who need long-term care services in Wyoming have a number of community-based and residential options to choose from. Adult day care is the lowest-priced option as $1,560 per month, while a semi-private room in a skilled nursing facility is the most expensive type of long-term care at $7,346 per month. 44 hours of weekly in-home care costs $5,339 for a homemaker, and $5,384 for a home health aide. Assisted living, which included room and board, costs an average of $3,780 per month.
Home Health Care
Adult Day Care
Assisted Living Facility
Nursing Home Care
The Cost of Memory Care in Wyoming’s Top Cities
Comparing Costs Across Wyoming
As as relatively small state in terms of the population, there’s only two Wyoming cities listed on Genworth’s Cost of Care Survey. The survey shows that at $5,675 per month, local care costs are highest in Cheyenne, while average costs are $144 less in Casper at $5,531. We’ve also included the average memory care costs in nearby cities such as Fort Collins, CO ($4,810), Rapid City, SD ($4,935) and Billings, MT ($5,438) for comparison.
Fort Collins, CO
Rapid City, SD
Financial Assistance for Memory Care in Wyoming
Community Choices Waiver
Wyoming’s Community Choices Waiver is a comprehensive Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services waiver program that covers a wide range of memory care services, including services delivered in a residential setting.
Who is Eligible?
To qualify for enrollment in the Community Choices Waiver, applicants must be either aged 65 and older, or be designated as permanently disabled according to Medicaid’s criteria. Applicants must also be full-time residents of the state, meet the income and asset limits for Medicaid, and meet the level of care criteria for nursing home placement.
How to Apply
To apply, contact the Wyoming Department of Health at 1-866-571-0944 to request a Medical Necessity Assessment, LT101, through a Public Health Nurse.
Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly/Wyoming PACE
Wyoming PACE is part of a nationwide comprehensive care model that helps frail seniors age in place within their communities rather than in a skilled nursing facility. PACE participants receive customized support through a network of physicians, social workers, recreational and behavioral therapists, personal care aides and specialists. By law, PACE must include all benefits provided through Medicaid.
Who is Eligible?
Wyoming PACE is open to applications from seniors aged 55 who live in Laramie County. Applicants must also meet the clinical criteria for admission to a skilled nursing facility, and be able to safely live in a community-based setting such as a memory care facility with the supports and services provided by PACE.
How to Apply
To apply for Wyoming PACE, call 307-773-8112 or phone the Wyoming Eldercare Referral Hotline at 1-800-677-1116.
Free and Low-Cost Memory Care Resources in Wyoming
Wyoming seniors who live with memory loss, their family members and caregivers can access up-to-date information on local memory loss resources and services throughout the state. These services include case management, referrals to community-based and residential Alzheimer’s programs, support groups and legal assistance.
|Alzheimer’s Association – Wyoming Chapter||1-800-272-3900||The Wyoming Chapter of the National Alzheimer’s Association operates a number of support groups, educational programs and caregiver training sessions. Chapter staff also provide one-on-one care consultations, and work to advocate for memory care services at the state and federal levels.|
|Wyoming Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program||307-777-2885||Wyoming’s Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program works to ensure the rights of long-term care residents, including those living in memory care facilities, are protected. The Ombudsman’s Program investigates complaints and concerns from residents, staff, families and community members related to long-term care services throughout the state.|
|Wyoming Senior Citizens Inc.||1-800-856-4398||Wyoming Senior Citizens, Inc. is a private, non-profit agency that offers a number of programs and services to support elders. The organization maintains offices in Riverton, Casper and Cheyenne, and services include Wyoming’s State Health Insurance Information Program (WSHIIP) and the Long Term Care Ombudsman program.|
|Wyoming Department of Health – Aging Division||1-800-442-2766||The Aging Division is responsible for a number of state-sponsored programs and initiatives for seniors, including three community-based care facilities, Wyoming’s State Plan on Alzheimer’s and county-based senior centers.|
|Legal Aid of Wyoming||1-877-432-9955||Legal Aid of Wyoming is a federally-funded, non-profit law firm that provides legal services to low-income seniors who need help dealing with civil matters. Seniors or their legal representatives can get help with legal issues related to guardianship, housing, estate planning and health care.|
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.
|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.