Can we get both VA and Medicaid ??

patrice607September 28, 2008

I'm getting conflicting information on whether or not my MIL can collect both VA aid and attendance and Medicaid. She has mild Alzheimer's and is still living on her own but needs to move to Assisted Living. We are trying to figure out how to pay for all this.

Her ADL's are too good to get Medicaid now so we are thinking of applying for VA now to help us with home health care and getting Medicaid later when she moves to assisted living. The latest info I got was that VA would be reduced to $90.00/month.

She is currently living in Indiana and wants to stay there. If we start with Medicaid in Indiana would we be able to transfer her to Ill. or Az. to be with family once she gets worse?

Thanks.

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lindajewell

I went through this with my brother, if she goes to Assisted Living she can qualify for Aid and Attendance, if she would have to go to a Nursing Home then the benefit is reduced to ninety dollars a month. The VA requires the check go in to a checking account in her name. The Aid and Attendance is for room and board at the Assisted Living, she can also qualify for medications to be covered by the VA but her medical would still fall under Medicare.
Medicaid does not apply in Assisted Living, I checked in to all this between my mom and my brother.
The VA is a pain to work with as they want to speak to the veteran to get permission to speak with anyone else.
Medicaid is state run by each state, my brother used to live in Ill. but we brought him back to PA. He is on Medicaid here but I had to apply and go through the whole process, however it did not take as long since he was brought directly to a nursing home and had been on Medicaid in Ill.

Medicaid kicks in when assets run out and one goes to a nursing home, it pays for room and board. Medicare is the medical coverage that will follow her for all Hospital stays and such. Medicaid helps with the meds and so on once she is on it. So, if she is going to AL then medicaid will not cover, but the VA will help out, once in a Nursing Home for long term care, Medicaid will kick in when assets are spent down and the VA gets cut back.

    Bookmark   September 29, 2008 at 7:04AM
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patrice607

Linda -

Thanks for the info. It's good to get info from someone who has been thru the system.

One of my contacts is recommending a place that charges $850 to fill out the VA forms. He stressed the importance of getting it right the first time and said that VA does not take calls faxes or emails. All communication is done by US snail mail. This means that once you receive a request for further documentation the deadline has already passed. The firm does a 40 minute phone interview and fills out all the forms. Due to the quantity of applications they submit, they claim they get priority treatment and can cut the wait time to 4-5 months.
They also handle the annual review. Based on your comments, I'm thinking it might be worth the money.
What do you think?

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 8:36AM
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lindajewell

I am not sure about this as I did not have to "start from scratch" with my brother as he was getting his VA benefits in Ill. However when I tried to do anything for him with the VA they said they needed to talk with my brother. Well I went round and round because my brother has Parkinson's and some days just cannot project his voice. Finally I got a woman who understood and gave me her "private line" to call when I was with my brother. I did, all she asked my brother was to verify his SS number, which he did with my help and then she asked if it was okay for me to handle the details. However, I can tell you before all of that I got so darn many forms from the VA I could not make heads or tails out of them!
I would think there are other alternitives to paying someone to fill out the forms. Contact your local Elder Care services and see if they can direct you to some help. Even calling the VA itself and asking for direction in filling out the proper forms might help. I can tell you that company will not get priority treatment, the VA does not work that way, your forms will be dealt with when they get to them.
Send them registered mail to force them to sign for them, then you have proof of when they arrived. Do you have an assisted living place already picked out? If so ask the social worker there to help you, that is what they are there for and if they want to be paid they will help.

Make a few more phone calls before paying that kind of money. Also, make sure you have all discharge papers in order and make copies! Call your local VA office and ask them what forms you need and if they can help you.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 9:11AM
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pfllh

I would not hire someone to do the paperwork. Nice little business there. I'd tell them where to put their paperwork!
Go online under Veterans Administration and click on benefits. That will give you the basics. The site will also give you toll free numbers for different services. You can inquire there too as for assistance in filling out the paperwork and advice as to what paperwork is needed as to form numbers and which records you need. You are dealing with a government agency so of course they always need lots of paperwork. It's also a factor as to if she was in the military or the spouse.
VA also has homes for those unable to care for themselves. Some are good and some are trash. You'd have to personally check them out and find out if any grievances.
If you have to take care of everything, you might want to see about a power of attorney. There are different kinds so be sure you get what is needed. If she has base privleges, you can get free legal advice at the judge advocates office by making an appointment with one of the attorneys. Not living there and her refusal to move by you is going to make it a lengthy process. If a base by you, call the JAG office and just explain the situation and they may, I said may, advise you what all needs done.
I wish you the best.
Lynn

    Bookmark   September 30, 2008 at 9:40PM
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mariend

Also if there is a VFW post in your area, they should have a service officer to help out--free--this is their job and what they are trained for. Is she the veteran? Like some said there are people on/near military bases that will help out. There is a large facility in Fargo ND. Maybe they could recommend someone near you. Also the Mayo Clinic does some VA work. Ask your hospital social services for help. You should not have to pay someone that much--especially over the phone when you do not even know who you are talking to or if they are authorized to receive this information. Remember identity theft people will do anything to get the information--regardless who recommends them.

    Bookmark   October 1, 2008 at 6:39PM
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christmasbaby

Check this site and read the info carefully. They suggest not hiring someone to file for you. It seems to be a very helpful site.
Terri

Here is a link that might be useful: Veterans aid.org

    Bookmark   October 7, 2008 at 7:15PM
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goldenpond

I went round and round trying to get my dad's VA assistance.I went on line and they told me to talk to my county office. They were never answering the phone and when they did said he needed his papers which I couldn't get online finally I had something sent to me saying his records were burnt up in a fire in Missouri I think.
I saw in the paper that the county south of us was having a party for vets and would be answering questions. I took dad and had high hopes. When i got inside the first guy was trying to recruit him to join their club and offered him beer. He was ready to have us leave when he found out we weren't from their county. Someone stepped in and said ask the next person at the table(the tables were set up in a long row) Each person kept handing me off to the next and I could feel the tears welling up inside . Finally I came to a lady who asked me what I needed help with and I choked it out. She asked my dad his numbers and he didn't remember. She patiently kept talking to us and asking us other things and all of a sudden dad spilt out his numbers!She said they always remember eventually ans said she'd get something in the mail right away and try and help(I didnt believe her) Lo and behold an envelope with his charred papers arrived at my house. She has been so helpful!
It has been worth it to get a little $$$ to help care for him and also to
have medical and prescriptions,hearing aids and eyeglasses taken care of.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2008 at 9:51PM
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