Too many families mistakenly believe Medicare covers nursing home expenses. Actually Medicare has a very brief benefit for rehabilitation in a nursing home, as explained by Certified Elder Law Attorney Dennis Toman.
Many families think that Medicare is going to cover the cost of the nursing home. In fact, Medicare has a very limited benefit help pay for nursing home cost.
Medicare will help pay for the cost of rehabilitation. That’s when a person goes to hospital, receives care there at least for three days, comes out and goes into a skilled nursing facility for rehabilitation. Medicare will then pay for the first 20 days of care; days 21 – 100 there’s a sizable deductible, but that’s where your Medicare supplement policy will help cover the cost of that additional amount for those days. So at the most, between Medicare and your private insurance, you may get coverage for up to 100 days of rehabilitation.
But if a person stops rehabilitating and they’re no longer needing the rehabilitation, then Medicare is going to stop. And if Medicare stops, the private insurance stops as well. That’s when we have to look for other ways to pay for the cost of care.
Many people confuse Medicare with Medicaid, but Medicaid becomes one of the issues we need to deal with when Medicare stops caring.