Updated: Jun 13
A doctor’s finding that your loved one requires 24/7 care feels like sailing through murky, shallow waters. The first challenge is having to accept that skilled nursing probably is the only realistic choice for providing the care that is needed. The second is how to pay for such care on a long-term basis. The time frame for formulating a plan is short – maybe a week at most.
Managing the care of a loved one who is no longer independent with activities of daily living can be like steering through the fog of night. Like a lighthouse in the dark, we hope to share information that will help the caregiver avoid losing control when transitioning their loved one into skilled nursing becomes medically necessary.
§ Nursing homes in Delaware charge between $12,000 and $15,000 per month.
§ Ninety percent of the senior population will exhaust their savings within the first year.
§ Long-Term Care Medicaid is the only sustainable source of funding for most people.
The Medicaid application process is daunting. Assume that it will take at least six months for approval of the application. It is very difficult to find a nursing home bed unless the patient can self-pay until Medicaid is approved. This fact dictates that the caregiver must start when there is at least $100,000 left in savings to avoid a financial crisis. 
 Don’t delay starting the Long-Term Care Medicaid process in the hope that your loved one might get better. This rarely happens. Based on the six-month timeline, available funds may not last that long. Let us warn you about the obstacles lying in wait, threatening to sink the ship: It is said that some facilities are willing to accept a new patient who is down to income only on the basis of a Medicaid concept known as retroactive payment. They say the facility only requires the new resident to pay their monthly income until their application is approved. This creates a growing balance owed each month. The theory is that as long as the new resident has started the Medicaid application process, Medicaid will pay the facility up to three months retroactively once the application is approved. This is not correct. Please see our blog on this issue.