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Paying for Long Term Care
There are a number of ways to pay for long term care, including personal funds, Medicaid, Medicare, or long term care insurance. HMOs and managed health care plans may also take care of the costs of a nursing home, but the home must be a designated provider to be covered. Imboden Creek Living Center is a Medicaid and Medicare certified skilled nursing facility, but nearly 80% of our residents pay for their care out of their own pockets.

Medicaid
In the beginning of a stay, some people pay for their nursing home care with no help from outside sources. But many times, the longer the stay, they may run out of funds. At this time they may become eligible for Medicaid.

Medicaid is a joint state and federal program that pays for health care for low income people. To be eligible for Medicaid you have to meet certain eligibility requirements, which vary from state to state. In Illinois you may be able to receive Medicaid if you are: a U.S. citizen or meet non-citizen requirements; live in the state of Illinois; meet the age requirement; provide complete information about your current health insurance; and meet financial requirements. Medicaid pays for a third of all long term care. If you make too much for Medicaid, but meet all other criteria, you may be eligible for partial Medicaid assistance.

For more information on the Medicaid program, including how to apply, please contact the IL Department of Healthcare and Family Services Macon County office at (217) 362-6500.

Medicare
Medicare is a federal health insurance program that you pay into by the way of Social Security or the Railroad Retirement system. At age 65, if you or your spouse have paid into social security or the railroad retirement system for at least 10 years, you are automatically eligible for Medicare.

If you qualify for skilled nursing care, after a three-day hospital stay Medicare will pay in full the cost for you to stay 20 days in a skilled nursing facility. If you are in a skilled nursing facility 21-100 days, Medicare pays all but about $164.50 a day; if you are there over 100 days, you pay the full cost beginning with day 101.

This information all depends on what type of plan you’re on. For more information on the variety of plans offered, visit www.medicare.gov.

Long Term Care Insurance
More and more insurance agents are offering long term care insurance to cover nursing home health care. Ask your insurance agent for more information on different long term care insurance policies.