VA Benefits: Amazing Ways to Pay for Home Care
Many people think of home as the place that provides comfort, security, and happiness. It is filled with many of life’s loving memories. The majority of seniors plan to stay living in their home for these reasons along with the desire to maintain their independence. Often aging veterans may not know they can age at home with VA benefits.
Aging in Place is a concept that supports an older person’s desire to remain at home even when extra help is needed. The good news is that there are many resources available to help a senior stay at home for as long as they are able. The bad news is that seniors are not aware of benefits that connect them to these resources and this is especially true for senior veterans.
This article provides information for those that want to help a veteran pay for home care in order to remain living in his or her own home.
Determine Benefit Status
Veterans and their spouses have many long term care services available to them as long as they are enrolled in the VHA system and as long as they are aware of them. Awareness is often the problem in getting the help needed. As recent as October of 2018, it has been reported that millions of veterans are missing out on benefits because they do not know about them.
These benefits are not being kept a secret; rather, there are many benefits provided for veterans, their spouses, and their children and each one has a set of criteria to determine eligibility and it is a lot of information to convey effectively.
Researching online resources will help get things started. From the basic information you will discover that there is a lot of paperwork along with a long process time in order to receive certain benefits that cover long term care. However, this benefit is a great connection to quality senior care and the difficulties involved are worth the outcome.
Helpful resources include:
- The American Legion
- The Veterans Benefits Administration
- The Veterans of Foreign Wars
- VA-accredited claims specialists and attorneys (check with the Better Business Bureau, references, and reviews before signing agreements)
- Your state’s Department of Veteran Affairs
There is a list of criteria to determine eligibility. The following are items that must be met:
- Served at least one day during a time of war
- Must be considered “totally disabled” – a designation automatically placed on wartime veterans when they turn 65
Some VA benefits are income based.
Understanding VA Benefits
It is recommended to contact your local VA office and request the current benefits handbook. It offers a comprehensive view of benefits, criteria, and resources.
Getting help from others that have been through this process will help by offering tips and confirming some of the difficulties involved.
Local in-home care companies might offer assistance with managing the benefit system for veterans. Make sure that the person offering help demonstrates an expertise with this specific procedure.
Veterans may also be able to pay for long care services through Federal and State programs (Medicare and Medicaid) and through insurance or private funds. Most likely it will be a combination of resources including VA assistance.
While working through the benefit process, it can help a senior veteran to take advantage of other services that help at home. Many communities support programs that assist an older adult with their goal to age in place. Contact your local aging department to find out what assistance is available.
Finally, contact local community organizations to connect with volunteer programs that focus on helping older adults with minor household chores.
Don’t Give Up
Many have discovered that helping a senior veteran get the help they have earned can be a long and tedious process. It involves research, phone calls, and persistence. Through it all you will find the help you are seeking and you will have helped a veteran to enjoy his or her time spent living comfortably and healthy in a place called home. As with Medicare, VA benefits can seem daunting, but the help is worth it.