Another Home Based Medicaid Option?
In the past year we have probably handled more Medicaid home based applications than in the previous 5 years combined. Much of this has to do with the current pandemic and the reluctance of families to place their loved ones in facilities where maintaining Covid safety is more difficult than in one’s own home.
The home based Medicaid program has its limitations. As I typically explain, it tends to be the least comprehensive of the 3 New Jersey programs that cover long term care. Once an applicant is approved, a caseworker evaluates the amount of care needed. Although one must satisfy the requirement of needing “nursing home level” care, on average the home based Medicaid program pays for about 30 hours a week of care.
Once that determination is made the Medicaid recipient must then use a Medicaid certified aide which can be difficult to locate. Often families are already using an aide that their loved one is comfortable with. Change is not made easily. In many cases family members are providing much of the care but because they are not Medicaid licensed, they cannot be compensated under the home based program.
For some, however, there may be another option. New Jersey has another program called the Personal Preference Program (PPP). It works differently than the program outlined above. For example, it may actually be able to pay family members who provide the care to their loved ones.
Next week I’ll share more details.