Social Security pays retirement, disability, family and survivor’s benefits. Medicare, a separate program, helps pay for inpatient hospital care, nursing care, doctors’ fees, drugs and other medical services and supplies.
Someone with a long physical illness, a disability or cognitive impairment (such as Alzheimer’s disease) often needs long-term care. Long-term care is different than medical care because it generally helps you to live as you are instead of improving or correcting medical problems.
Medicare does not pay for long-term care, so you may want to consider options for private insurance.
- This suggestion is directly from Social Security’s personalized earning’s statement (page 4)
Services include help with activities of daily living (ADLs), home healthcare, respite care, hospice care or adult day care. Many times clients receive care in their own home or an assisted living facility.
In 2010 the average costs of care across the US:
- $3,293 per month for a one-bedroom unit at assisted living [$39,516 per year]
- $6,965 per month for a private one-bedroom in a nursing home [$83,580 per year]
- Data from U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
Medicaid is a government-funded program that pays for nursing home care only for individuals who are low income and have spent most of their assets.
- Purchasing a qualified long-term care policy (partnership policies) can protect you from the normal Medicaid requirement to spend down your income and assets.