For older adults and those with disabilities, Medicare is invaluable when it comes to doctor visits, hospitalizations, prescriptions, and more. And with the rising number of seniors diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease – and an equally increasing cost for Alzheimer’s care – it stands to reason that families are counting on Medicare to help.
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, Alzheimer’s care expenses currently cost our nation as much as $277 billion this year alone, and are expected to cross the $1 trillion mark by the year 2050. The key to determining if Medicare will cover any or all of these expenses boils down to one significant question: are care needs deemed medically necessary, or custodial?
Medically Necessary Care
The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services defines medically necessary care as “health care services or supplies needed to diagnose or treat an illness, injury, condition, disease, or its symptoms and that meet accepted standards of medicine.”
Per the Alzheimer’s Association, this means that Medicare will cover:
- An annual wellness visit and health risk assessment
- Hospitalizations, some physicians’ fees, medical items and prescriptions
- Hospice care at home
The majority of care needs for those with Alzheimer’s falls under the category of custodial care, which is non-medical in nature and includes services such as assistance with meals, bathing, dressing, and other activities of daily living. Medicare currently does not assist with custodial care expenses. These care needs are, however, often covered by long-term insurance plans as well as Medicaid for those who qualify.
Whether a senior requires medically necessary or custodial care, THE MEDICAL TEAM is here to help with a full range of highly customized in-home care services. We’re making life safer and more comfortable for those with dementia throughout New Orleans, Detroit, Austin, Dallas, and the metro DC area. Contact us to learn more about how we can help you!