Monday, March 14, 2016

Comparative Memory Care (MC) Costs (Private Pay and Insurance)


Chart 11 is a worst-case scenario. What would the cost be per year if the couple had to rent individual apartments instead of sharing an apartment?

Memory care (MC)/independent living (IL); MC/assisted living (AL); MC/MC; and MC/nursing home (NH) are viewed for each of the residential care sites. In general the cost goes up another $40,000 (IL $40,000; AL $80,000 and separate spaces $120,000)

Tiger Place must now include The Arbors for MC. The two older sites, Tiger Place with The Arbors and Lenoir Woods have higher pricing for fully developed programs.

Mill Creek and Arbors price by level of care. Each level increases in price, as a one would generally expect. Memory care (MC) is the most expensive level as this unit will be in a state of the art, separate building from IL and AL. Opens in the spring of 2016 (15 April).

Provision Living also has a site combining modern (2015) memory care and assisted living. The price for each level is about the same and is less than at a nursing home (purple, NH). Our apartment is about 20 feet from a 12 apartment MC unit that will open later this year.

The only way to get lower pricing is to stay home and use day care (green), about $50,000/year. It only takes 12 hr/day of in-home care (green) to approach the cost of residential care.

So what to do for a couple needing assisted living and memory care in Columbia, MO?
  • No money – stay at home or Medicaid nursing home (NH).
  • $40,000/yr – in-home care.
  • $80,000/yr – residential care including SN or private pay NH.
  • Run out of money – Medicaid NH.
Both Lenoir Woods and Mill Creek have Medicaid skilled nursing (SN) beds for residents who qualify (a number of years private pay and private negotiation). This is another judgment call to offset the higher charges for additional services these two sites provide. You do not have to endure continuous stress from planning to move again and to pay for those “aging in place” final days (at the same level of care) in a yet to be determined location.

The quality of home and residential care depends on the buildings, the management, the caregivers and the residents. Staffing (radiant people) and training are critical. 

The “final” choice, at any one time, seems to be a balance between money available and when you can qualify for Medicaid. Hospice is free (does not include room and board).

Our current question is, Do we find a less expensive site in Boone County and not run our of money or stay here and transition to a Medicaid nursing home (NH)? Ten weeks here at Provision Living at Columbia (MO) has certainly taught us a lot about what to look for and what we would miss if another site lacked that feature or quality.

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