Long-Term Care - By the Numbers
It's impossible to predict your chances of needing long-term care, or how long you may need it. And since cost of care can be expensive, it's important to understand the financial impact a few years of long-term care can have.
$102,200 The national annual median cost of care for a private room in a nursing home.
$300,000+ Cost of three years of assisted living plus two years of nursing home care.
Many people mistakenly believe that government programs like Medicare and Medicaid will automatically pay all of their long-term care needs. While these programs do pay for some long-term care services, you shouldn’t plan on them covering the majority of your costs.
Medicaid may pay for skilled nursing home services, as well as some home and community-based care for low-income Americans who have limited funds. To qualify, one has to meet federal and state guidelines for income and assets. Many people who are living in nursing homes entered the facility paying for care out-of-pocket, and only after they spend enough of their assets do they meet Medicaid eligibility requirements via asset “spend-down.”
Not all nursing homes accept Medicaid patients, and Medicaid can dictate which nursing home a patient may use. If you’re concerned with protecting your assets, or simply want more control over the type of care you will receive, you should not rely on Medicaid for their long-term care needs.
Medicare may cover up to 100 days of skilled nursing home care if certain conditions are met, but it’s not designed to be a long-term care financing tool. Medicare does not pay for any homemaker services, home health aides, or assisted-living costs.
*New York Life Cost of Care Survey, 2019