About Medicaid Pertaining to Long Term Care
Medicaid is a state-based federal government program that will pay for Long Term Care only to those who are poor and to those who have spent most of their assets. Many people have to start paying for Long Term Care services using their own funds, while they spend-down their assets until they are eligible for Medicaid assistance. This is usually all but $2,000 of your assets and savings.
Typically, nursing home care is your only option when on Medicaid and it is not exactly easy to get placed in a home. Medicaid does not guarantee placement, and quite often Medicaid-funded nursing homes are full and you do not have your choice of what location you receive care. Sometimes Medicaid will pay for home health care and community based care.
In addition, with the new law (Deficit Reduction Act) that passed in 2006, the government is going to make it more difficult to be eligible for Medicaid.
Basically, if you do not have any assets to protect and have a low income, Medicaid is probably your best bet for Long Term Care. However, if you can afford Long Term Care insurance and want control of the type and the location of care that you receive, then LTC insurance is your best bet.
NAIC, Shopper's Guide to Long Term Care Insurance,2003
For further information Medicaid services, eligibility, enrollment, etc. please visit Centers for Medicaid Services.