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The average cost of assisted living in the city is $5,500 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 15 assisted living facilities in Kennewick and 2 in surrounding areas.
The Cost of Senior Care in Kennewick, WA
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Genworth’s 2018 Cost of Care study shows that at an average of $5,500 per month, assisted living in Kennewick is significantly more expensive than the national average of $4,000. Prices are lower in nearby Walla Walla ($4,950), Yakima ($4,500) and Wenatchee.
Statewide, the average assisted living price is $5,135, which is high in comparison to the national average. Assisted living costs start at $4,000 in Spokane and go up to $5,750 in the Seattle area with prices in most areas in Washington exceeding $5,000 per month.
The Cost of Assisted Living in Surrounding Areas
Senior care costs in Kennewick start at $1,195 per month for adult day health services and go up to $8,699 per month for semiprivate nursing home care. The significant difference in pricing reflects the level of care offered with each service as well as the number of care hours included per week.
At $5,500 per month, assisted living costs an average of $924 more than either homemaker or home health aide services. Considering that assisted living includes most day-to-day living expenses, such as accommodation, home maintenance and utilities, assisted living can actually be more affordable than hiring in-home senior care.
Senior Care Cost Comparison Chart
Established in 1965 to provide needy Americans with basic health coverage, Medicaid is the national government-funded health plan. It’s administered at the state level and mandatory benefits include doctor’s visits; inpatient, outpatient and emergency hospitalization; home health care and nursing facility services.
Apple Health Eligibility
Seniors aged 65 and older who are eligible for federal Supplemental Security Income benefits automatically qualify for aged, blind and disabled Apple Health coverage. All other seniors must meet income and asset limits based on the federal poverty level.
To qualify for long-term Apple Health services, including home and community-based Medicaid waivers, single seniors can earn no more than $2,313 per month and own no more than $2,000 in countable assets.
Couples in which both spouses need Apple Health coverage can earn no more than $4,626 per month and own no more than $3,000 in joint countable assets.
Some assets are excluded, such as a house, condo or mobile home that the applicant owns and resides in. Also excluded is one personal vehicle, household goods and prepaid, irrevocable burial trusts.
Spousal Income and Asset Exemptions
When only one spouse needs Apple Health coverage, the minimum monthly needs allowance rule lets the applicant, called the institutional spouse, transfer up to $3,160.50 of their income to the community spouse. The actual amount that can be transferred without penalty depends on the shelter costs and income of the healthy spouse.
The community spouse is also entitled to keep half of the couple’s joint assets, worth a maximum of $126,420, under the community spouse resource allowance rule. Assets included under the CSRA are in addition to the Medicaid-exempt assets.
Medically Needy Pathway
Seniors who meet the asset limits for Apple Health enrollment but are excluded due to excess income may be able to enroll under the medically needy program.
Commonly called a Medicaid spend-down program, MN works like an insurance deductible as each participant is given a medical costs spending limit based on their income. Seniors pay out-of-pocket for specific medical costs for either a three- or six-month period, and once they have reached their MN limit, Apple Health benefits are made available for the remainder of the MN period.
To apply for Apple Health and for more information on the MN pathway, contact the Washington Healthplanfinder customer support center at (855) 923-4633.
Community Options Program Entry System
Seniors aged 65 and older who qualify for no-cost Apple Health coverage and need help with at least two activities of daily living may be eligible for enrollment in COPES.
This home and community-based waiver lets eligible seniors age in place in their home or an assisted living facility by funding additional community-based care services. The goal of COPES is to delay or prevent institutionalization of seniors by providing medically necessary supports in an assisted living environment.
Eligible seniors must complete a needs assessment administered by the Department of Social and Health Services, Home and Community Services. This assessment determines if the senior can have their care needs met through the services offered under the COPES program.
COPES services are assigned on a case-by-case basis and may include:
Personal and attendant care services are not provided through COPES.
Community First Choice Program
Community First Choice provides funding for personal and attendant care services for seniors who reside in assisted living. Seniors who qualify for COPES can also apply to the CFC, and it’s common for seniors to be enrolled in both programs as the eligibility criteria is the same.
Services provided through the CFC are assigned based on the medical needs of each participant and may include:
CFC participants have the option to self-direct their personal care services by hiring and managing their own caregivers, which may be a family member.
For more information on COPES and the CFC, contact Southwest WA Aging and Long Term Care at (509) 735-0315.
Elderlife Financial Assisted Living Bridge Loan
Seniors who need money to pay for a move into assisted living may qualify for an assisted living bridge loan. This 12-month open loan is set up like a line of credit, therefore, the monthly payments are interest-only on the amount borrowed and the entire balance can be paid off at any time.
Offered by Elderlife Financial, assisted living loans are designed to bridge the funding gap for seniors who are transitioning into assisted living and either selling their family home or waiting for benefits to kick in.
As an unsecured loan, approval is based on the credit rating of the applicants. Up to six applicants can be listed to improve the overall credit rating of the loan application.
If approved, seniors usually have access to the funds within 24 hours, and payments can be sent directly from Elderlife to the assisted living provider.
For more information on current interest rates, contact Elderlife Financial at (888) 228-4500.
Washington State Supplemental Payment Program
The Washington State Supplemental Payment Program provides eligible Supplemental Security Income recipients aged 65 or older with an additional $40 benefit each month. This state-sponsored benefit is automatically added to the monthly SSI payment and is designed to help seniors pay for the room-and-board portion of their monthly living expenses.
The Kennewick Community Center is a barrier-free, all-ages center that hosts a number of weekly classes, drop-in activities and special events geared towards seniors.
Kennewick Community Center
500 S. Auburn St., Kennewick, WA 99336
Senior Life Resources of the Northwest operates communal dining sites throughout Benton County where seniors can enjoy a low-cost meal, social activities and companionship. The organization also operates the local Meals on Wheels program.
Catholic Charities of Central Washington operates a free senior companion program that connects isolated seniors with a screened visitor who provides transportation and friendship.
Senior Life Resources of the Northwest
1824 Fowler St., Richland, WA 99352
Tri-Cities Catholic Charities
2139 Van Giesen St., Richland, WA 99354
Benton County veterans and survivors who need food vouchers, bus passes, help covering burial expenses or case management services can access the Benton County Veterans Relief Fund.
A Veteran Service Office is available to help with VA benefit applications and appeals by calling (509) 460-4703.
Outpatient VA health services are available at the nearby Richland VA Clinic, a CBOC affiliated with the Jonathan M. Wainwright Memorial VA Medical Center in Walla Walla.
Richland VA Clinic
825 Jadwin Ave., Richland, WA 99352-3589
Benton County Veterans Relief Fund
7102 W. Okanogan Pl., Kennewick, WA 99336
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