Alzheimer's and Dementia Care Costs: Facts & Figures
According to the Alzheimer’s Association, by 2025 there will be 7.1 million seniors age 65 and older diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Because this disease can cause behavioral and emotional changes, specialized care is often needed to ensure that these individuals can continue living a full life. Increasingly senior living communities are designed to cater solely to seniors with Alzheimer’s and dementia, incorporating design elements such as sun-filled rooms and color cuing to help with way finding. Unfortunately for families, the cost of care at these communities is quite expensive compared to assisted living communities.
The cost of joining memory care community varies upon several factors which typically include:
- Geographic location of the community
- Size of accommodations selected
- Level of care required
- Additional amenity and service fees
Memory Care Costs by State
Unlike assisted living and nursing home costs which are published annually by Genworth Financial, there is very little published state-by-state cost information available on Alzheimer’s and dementia care. To help you budget for when a loved one needs to join a memory care community, SeniorHomes.com has compiled pricing* for each state.
|State||Monthly Average||Monthly Minimum||Monthly Maximum|
*2015 Cost data provided by senior living communities and compiled by SeniorHomes.com is subject to change without notice. This data is for informational purposes only and may contain inaccuracies. Your actual senior living costs may vary depending on your personal situation.
The states with the most expensive median monthly memory care costs are:
- Maine - $5,800
- Massachusetts - $5,642
- Vermont - $5,575
- Connecticut - $5,344
- Rhode Island - $5,270
The states with the least expensive median monthly memory care costs are:
- Idaho - $3,165
- Mississippi - $3,233
- New Mexico - $3,440
- South Carolina - $3,703
- Arkansas - $3,792
Size of Accommodations Selected
When joining a memory care community, families can usually choose between a private or companion suite. High-end communities may also offer one-bedroom floor plans. The layout of memory care apartments is usually standard across communities: a private bathroom, bed, dresser, closet and an end table. To make the space feel like home, residents are encouraged to decorate their room with personal belongings, and many communities have memory boxes outside the room to aid in way finding.
Communities typically offer either a month-to-month leases or one-year leases that may be renewed.
Level of Care Required
Upon admission a licensed nurse conducts an assessment which forms the basis of a care plan outlining the level and frequency of supportive services that will be provided. Seniors with Alzheimer’s or dementia often require assistance with all activities of daily living and may even require one-on-one assistance for tasks.
In most cases a point system or levels of care are used to breakdown the costs for these assisted living services. When a point system is used, each type of care and the frequency in which it’s provided determines the monthly cost. For example, medication management/administration once a day may cost an additional $150 per month while the same service provided three times a day may cost an additional $300 per month.
Levels of care may be based upon a point system as well, with this type of cost determination often providing less flexibility in monthly costs. For example, a resident may fall between a Level One and a Level Two but they must pay for Level Two care as their needs exceed Level One.
Memory care communities charge a refundable deposit fee, which secures a particular apartment within the community for a specific period of time (usually two weeks). Once a resident moves in, this deposit usually applies toward the one-time community fee (the name of this fee may vary). Ranging from $1,000 to $5,000, this non-refundable fee covers administrative expenses and the cost of apartment renovations between residents.
Other costs may include charges for private transportation, off-site activities, guest meals and use of a guest apartment within the community. There may also be a monthly pet fee or second person fee if a couple shares an apartment.
More Information on Memory Care Costs
For more information on how to pay for memory care costs, check out the following articles: