Alzheimer’s impacts thousands of lives in Texas. If you were recently diagnosed with the disease or caring for a loved one with it, you are far from being alone because approximately 360,000 people over the age of 65 have Alzheimer’s disease in Texas. This number could increase to 490,000 by 2025 with the rapidly aging population. There are several support groups to help families along with several medical facilities equipped to handle Alzheimer’s patients.
Lubbock is part of the West Texas Chapter of the national Alzheimer’s Association. This Association provides research, education, support groups, caregiver information, and 24-hour help lines for both patients and families. There are several highly rated Alzheimer’s care facilities and in-home care near Lubbock including SeniorAdvisor.com’s 2017 Best of Assisted Living Award Winner: Raider Ranch. Other highly rated care options in and around Lubbock include Bee Hive Assisted Living, Brookdale Monterey, Wilshire Place, Good Life Senior Living, and Autumn Leaves of Amarillo.
More than five million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease. This number could rise to more than 16 million people by the year 2050.
One out of three seniors that die each year has Alzheimer’s or dementia.
Alzheimer’s was the 6th leading cause of death in Texas in 2014, which increased 113 percent from 2000.
There were 1.4 million unpaid caregivers in Texas that provided 1.6 billion unpaid hours of their time to help a patient with Alzheimer’s.
The estimated dollar amount of unpaid Alzheimer’s caregiving hours was $19.9 billion in Texas alone.
Caregiving is stressful and takes a toll on the caregiver’s health, and health expenses for these caregivers increased by $815 million.
Almost 23 percent of individuals in hospice care have a primary diagnosis of some form of dementia.
When determining how to care for your loved one, you will first need to determine which type. These options include at-home care with visiting medical staff, adult day care programs, or live-in residential programs at a skilled memory care facility or nursing home. For nursing homes that offer Alzheimer’s care, most of them have a separate wing for memory care, and some facilities strictly focus on memory care.
The primary goal of any Alzheimer’s care program is to make sure the patient feels comfortable in a familiar setting. Alzheimer patients need active supervision to prevent falls and wandering. It is also important to ensure he or she is eating and drinking enough throughout the day, and this may also include helping the patient eat.
The Baby Boomer is rapidly aging along with the demands for Alzheimer’s care. The Fiscal Times recently reported that the cost of Alzheimer’s care in the United States topped $226 billion. It is hard to determine how much the average cost is per person because prices vary depending on geographic location and type of care. Also, Alzheimer’s care is not separated from other skilled nursing care in these surveys, so it is unclear how much Alzheimer’s care cost varies from nursing home care.
Genworth conducted its 2016 Cost of Care Survey and found the national median for nursing home costs to be $6,844 a month for a semi-private room and $7,698 a month for a private room. In Lubbock, the average price was lower than the national median with semi-private rooms costing $4,715 a month and private rooms averaging around $6,692 monthly. By 2026, these monthly costs could soar to $6,337 and $8,993 respectively.
Alzheimer’s care can be pretty pricey, and some families could face financial hardship dealing with the expenses. Alzheimer’s patients tend to live for a long time with the disease and will continue to rack up the medical bills, causing some families to tap into savings or provide hours of unpaid care. There are some ways you can save money and not compromise on the quality of care.
By selecting a semi-private room at a nursing home, you can save money. With Genworth’s figures, semi-private rooms cost approximately $1,977 less per month than a private room, which could save an astounding $23,724 a year. Make sure your loved one can handle sharing a room. You will also need to consider that there will be additional visitors. Discuss sharing rooms with the nursing home and see what their policies are.
If your loved one lives at home, you can send him or her to an adult day care program for supervised medical care while you are at work. These services cost less than live-in Alzheimer’s care. Adult Day Activity and Health Center of Lubbock Texas provides complete adult day care services and offers transportation and lunch. There are several activities to keep your loved one engaged during the day.
A long-term care policy should cover Alzheimer’s care. If your loved one has a policy, talk to your insurance agent to find out the specifics of coverage, limits, and any other conditions. You may also want to consider automatic payments to ensure the policy is paid on time to prevent a lapse in coverage.
For war veterans and widows of veterans, they may be eligible for the VA Aid & Attendance pension (if they served during a time of war) to assist with Alzheimer’s care costs. To answer additional questions or to apply, contact the Texas VA’s regional benefits office.
For low-income seniors without a long-term care insurance policy, Medicaid may be a viable option. Medicaid covers more than half of the nursing home care in Texas. When determining your eligibility, this federal-state program does not consider your home or car as assets. To learn more about Medicaid in Texas, visit the Your Texas Benefits page. If you prefer to get information or apply for benefits in person, there are 26 community partners in Lubbock to help you find the information you need.
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