WInter • 2018


The Cost of Skilled Nursing Care in Pennsylvania

By: Eva H. Ahern

$321.95. This is the average daily cost of skilled nursing care in Pennsylvania as calculated by the Department of Human Services. This makes the average annual cost of a skilled nursing facility $117,511.75! According to the Pennsylvania Health Care Association, the average stay in a nursing home is approximately three years. As you can  see, the assets you have worked so hard to accumulate may rapidly dwindle should you or a loved one require long-term skilled nursing care. Medicaid is a federal program administered by each state, that may assist with the expense of long-term skilled nursing care.

Medicaid does not cover the cost of assisted living care. In Pennsylvania, Medicaid is known as Medical assistance, and is managed by the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services. Medicaid is a means-tested entitlement program. This means that before you qualify for Medical Assistance, you must not only be "medically needy," you must also be income and asset eligible.

Despite the substantial cost of skilled nursing care, there may be some asset protection available to you and your family. To better understand the Medicaid rules and what planning options are available to you, we recommend that you consult with an attorney who specializes in elder law. The attorneys at Peacock Keller & Ecker can assist you in what is often a stressful and confusing time.


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