As leading nursing home injury abuse and neglect lawyers, the team at Pope & Howard, P.C. sees many heartbreaking cases. But most nursing homes provide excellent care for their residents.
Medicaid is a common source of funding for long-term nursing home care in Georgia. In fact, about 75% of nursing home residents in Georgia use Medicaid to assist with paying for their nursing home care.
The cost of nursing homes in Georgia can add up quickly. The average nursing home cost in Georgia being $183 per day, although costs can range from $115 to $255 depending on location and a number of other factors. Medicaid can make nursing home costs more affordable for residents in Georgia, as private health insurance policies generally do not cover long term care.
There are several different ways to become eligible for Medicaid in Georgia and specific eligibility rules for long-term care services like nursing homes.
Those that are 65+, blind, or disabled and meet minimum income requirements may be eligible for Medicaid.
If the individual already receives social security income, then he or she will automatically qualify for ABD Medicaid. If the individual is elderly, blind, or disabled, and needs long-term care in a nursing home – but is not currently receiving social security income – then the individual’s income must be less than $2,130 per month or $25,560 per year according to the Georgia Department of Community Health in 2014.
If you or a loved one exceed the income limit, there is another way to qualify. Georgia has a Medically Needy Program. This program allows the individual to use the medical bills incurred each month to “spend down” your income and qualify for Medicaid. The Medically Needy Program is available to pregnant women, children, the elderly, and blind or disabled adults.
The Medically Needy Program income limit for an elderly, blind, or disabled individual is $317 per month. This means that the individual must show that you have incurred medical expenses each month that would leave you with no more than $317.
Perhaps you do not meet the income limit and do not qualify for the Medically Needy Program. It’s important to work with an attorney to review you options to qualify for Medicaid.
One option to qualify for Medicaid in Georgia is to set up an Irrevocable Qualified Income Trust known as the The Miller Trust. The Miller Trust specifically allows people who cannot afford nursing home care, but who have a monthly income that exceeds the Medicaid income limit, to be eligible for Medicaid coverage in Georgia.
This allows the individual to put their extra income each month into the trust that has been set up under the terms of a Qualified Income Trust.
Unfortunately, many people require Medicaid coverage in order to meet the considerable expenses of nursing home care; however, they will not immediately meet the income limit. If you or a loved one fall into this category, you may want to meet with an attorney.
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