Common Questions About 24-Hour Nursing Care

Health & Medical Blog

The prospect that you or a loved one may require 24-hour nursing care can leave you with a lot of concerns. There is help available, though. Before you choose a 24-hour nursing care center, it's a good idea to address some of the common questions people have.

How Will It Be Paid For?

Every state has programs set up through both Medicare and Medicaid that are intended to ensure that folks who require 24-hour nursing care will be able to get it. These are almost all means-tested programs, ones that look at how much in the way of income and assets the person receiving help has available.

Bear in mind, however, that a person who requires 24-hour nursing care likely doesn't have a source of income, unless they have quite a bit stored up in retirement savings. Also, means testing only applies to the individual getting help paying for care and does not include income from other family members, with the exception of spouses. Many facilities try to accommodate residents' financial situations, too.

If you're judged to have too much in the way of income, you may still be eligible for some help under Medicare Plan B. This is a program that gives people access to Medicare options and providers in exchange for paying a premium that's highly reasonable. For example, a couple with between $170,000 and $214,000 of income would be eligible to pay a premium of less than $200.

What Services Are Provided?

Before entering into a 24-hour nursing care program, it's a good idea to talk with your doctor about the services that'll be required. You should then have an additional set of conversations with the providers that you are thinking about dealing with.

A key point to highlight during these conversations is exactly who'll be there to assist you or your loved one. Will there be an RN or LPN available 24/7, or will duties be assigned to aides? Is there a crash cart at the 24-hour nursing center to immediately address emergencies? Will there be skilled professionals on-site to handle your specific needs?

The way nonessential services are provided is also worth talking about. For example, what types of meals are included and which ones cost extra? Are there on-site facilities that allow residents the opportunity for entertainment and social interaction? By discussing these matters up front, you can ensure everyone's satisfaction with the arrangements.


17 January 2019