Steps to Take When Nursing Home Care is Recommended

When a doctor tells a patient that they need skilled nursing care, the patient, and his or her family, often experiences a wide range of emotions.  They often do not think to consult an attorney.  Given that the average monthly cost of nursing home care in Pennsylvania is $8,766.39 (in 2014), speaking with an attorney may create significant savings for the patient and/or family.

  • Talk to your doctor and medical care professionals to discuss the patient’s diagnosis, likelihood of recovery and return home.
  • Arrange for maximum level of therapy and care in the hospital.
  • Discuss with the hospital financial representative to see if Medicare coverage will be available for rehabilitation and/or nursing home cost.
  • Determine nursing facility of choice and availability of a bed there.
  • Meet with nursing home officials to discuss care and housing option cost.
  • Fill out nursing home application.
  • If patient has a spouse, obtain a Resource Assessment form and complete all financial asset and income information with value of each asset exactly stated as of nursing home admission date; obtain proof from each bank, brokerage, etc.
  • Contact an elder law attorney and schedule an appointment immediately after need for nursing home care is diagnosed; don’t wait; assets may be spent unnecessarily.
  • Locate all financial information, statement values and all income information.  We offer a questionnaire to help you on this.
  • Bring copies of Will, Power of Attorney, asset and income information and completed questionnaire to your appointment with an elder law attorney.
  • Follow advice of the attorney promptly and completely to obtain maximum asset preservation.

We are here to help with this difficult and sometimes frightening process.

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