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The average cost of assisted living in the city is $3,500 a month. This guide is a starting point covering the cost of assisted living care in the city, as well as financing options to pay for it. You’ll find in-depth information on 8 assisted living facilities in San Bernardino and 30 in surrounding areas.
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According to the Genworth 2018 Cost of Care study, the cost of assisted living in San Bernardino is $1,000 a month cheaper than the state average of $4,500 and also less costly than the national average of $4,000.
Compared to surrounding areas, San Bernardino is quite affordable. Other nearby cities, including Los Angeles, San Diego and Oxnard, have an average monthly cost that’s approximately $1,000 higher than San Bernardino. Bakersfield is the least expensive area in California for assisted living costs at $3,150 a month.
Note: Data for the cost of care for seniors was not available for San Bernardino, so data for the nearest major area, Riverside, was used.
Cost of Assisted Living Comparison Chart
The cost of assisted living in San Bernardino is relatively inexpensive, but in-home care is approximately 10 percent more costly. The increased cost of homemaker services and home health aides in the area is compounded by ongoing regular household costs, such as food and utilities, which are often covered when living in a facility. At more than double the cost of assisted living, nursing home care ($7,559) is easily the most expensive option in San Bernardino.
Cost of Homemaker/Home Health Aide Comparison Chart
In California, the state Medicaid program is Medi-Cal. This program is designed to help low-income seniors and disabled people pay for various services, such as nursing homes, doctors and hospitals, prescription drugs, dental, rehab, adult day health care and in-home personal care services.
Medi-Cal may pay for all of the applicable services (full scope) or only some of them (partial scope) depending on qualifications. The process is further complicated by the addition of over 90 categories of eligibility, such as income-based, SSI linked and medically needy.
The most common eligibility categories for seniors in San Bernardino are:
Applicants for Medi-Cal must meet the following general eligibility requirements:
The general requirements listed here should be viewed as a starting point for further research at the linked websites for individual categories of coverage.
Receiving benefits to pay for an assisted living facility is not considered an entitlement in California, and Medi-Cal won’t directly cover the associated costs. However, through the use of waivers it’s possible to receive assistance with the costs of some services at assisted living facilities. Benefits for seniors living at home, in a nursing facility or adult day care are entitlements in California, so there’s no waiting list for applicants who meet the eligibility requirements.
Seniors or their caregivers can apply for benefits, including Medi-Cal, through the Department of Health Care Services website. Alternatively, residents of San Bernardino can contact the Transitional Assistance Department (TAD) by phone at (877) 410-8829 or visit in person for more information on Medi-Cal.
Medi-Cal Assisted Living Waiver Program (ALW)
Medi-Cal’s Assisted Living Waiver (ALW) makes it possible for eligible residents to receive coverage for some expenses. The ALW is designed to help seniors who require a nursing facility level of care but would rather receive services in an assisted living facility.
Benefits of the ALW program include assisted living services such as health and social services, recreation, meals, housekeeping, laundry and transportation. Participants in the ALW will also receive care coordination and assistance transitioning out of a nursing facility if appropriate.
Anyone enrolled in a Medi-Cal category with a share of cost (SOC) cannot enroll in the Assisted Living Waiver program. Applicants for the Assisted Living Waiver (ALW) must be enrolled in Medi-Cal and must be assessed and determined to require a nursing facility level of care.
To apply for the ALW, seniors or their caregivers should contact one of the local Care Coordination Agencies (CCA) for San Bernardino, such as Partners in Care Foundation at (818) 837-3775. A registered nurse will make the determination on the level of care required.
Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE)
This program is funded by the federal government and designed to help seniors remain in their home or community instead of entering into a nursing home.
Services are provided at local PACE centers, such as InnovAge in San Bernardino, which serves as a a senior center, health care coordinator and senior advocacy group. If accepted, participants in the program must receive all health care services at a designated center or authorized provider.
Although PACE does not directly cover assisted living, it may cover some aspects of care in an assisted living facility. This program doesn’t pay for room and board.
Applicants for PACE must meet the following eligibility requirements:
To find out more about PACE and begin the application process, visit the InnovAge California website or call the San Bernardino branch at (909) 366-4230.
Optional State Supplement (OSS)
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits are provided to low-income seniors and disabled people by the federal government. California is one of many states that give additional benefits to residents through an Optional State Supplement (OSS) program.
The eligibility requirements for each level of additional payment are based on age, disability, blindness, marital status and current living arrangements. Applicants for OSS benefits must be receiving SSI benefits from the federal government.
The maximum benefit available in 2019, when combining both SSI and OSS, is $1,194 per month for individuals and $2,388 for couples.
To apply for OSS in California, contact a local Social Security Administration office or call (800) 772-1213 for the San Bernardino branch.
Each area of the state is served by a local Area Agency on Aging (AAA). These agencies help by providing services and education to seniors and caregivers, including assistance in enrolling for services, individual counseling and support groups.
Department of Aging and Adult Services (DAAS)
784 E. Hospitality Lane, San Bernardino, CA 92415
In addition to pension, social and health care benefits, qualified veterans may be eligible for programs that could help pay costs at assisted living facilities. Contact the local Veterans Affairs office for more information.
San Bernardino County Veterans Affairs
222 W. Hospitality Lane, Third Floor, San Bernardino, CA 92415
San Bernardino residents can stay active, eat lunch and meet new friends at local senior centers. These centers have regular activities and trips, and they can also provide guidance on aging-related matters such as long-term care.
Fifth Street Senior Center
600 W. 5th Street, San Bernardino, CA 92410
Highland Senior Center
3102 Highland Avenue, Highland, CA 92346
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