Because of the specialized staff training and resources required to provide high-quality memory care, memory care typically costs more than other types of residential care. On average, memory care will cost 20-30% more than assisted living.
In Florida, the average monthly cost of assisted living is $3,500, which is $551 below the national average of $4,051. Given that memory care usually costs 25% more than assisted living, monthly fees for residential memory care services in Florida will tend to be about $4,375.
Monthly assisted living costs in Florida range from $2,836 in Sebring up to $5,375 in The Villages. In Jacksonville, assisted living averages $4,263 per month, and in Miami, rates average $3,250 per month. In general, you can expect memory care services to cost upwards of $1,000 or more in addition to the average assisted living rates in any given county or city.
As of 2014, Florida consolidated all the state Home and Community-Based Medicaid Waivers under the Statewide Medicaid Managed Care, Long-Term Care Program. This program provides a broad range of client-centered services and supports to those who meet financial and medical eligibility requirements.
SSMC LTC services are delivered based on medical necessity, with a strong focus on services that delay or prevent placement in a nursing facility. These services may include:
In Florida, Medicaid applicants can earn no more than $2,313 per month, per individual, while couples applying together can earn up to $4,626 per month.
The Florida Department of Elder Affairs offers a number of non-Medicaid programs designed to assist people living with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia.
Florida’s Community Care for the Elderly program provides in-home, non-medical support services to frail seniors aged 60 and older who are at risk of nursing home placement.
Services provided through the CCE program are based on individual needs, and may include:
Home Care for the Elderly helps eligible seniors aged 60 and older avoid institutionalization by subsidizing care costs in a private home. All program participants receive an average basic monthly subsidy of $106 for use towards medications and medical supplies, mobility devices, personal care, and nutritional supplements. Case management is provided on an as-needed basis.
Florida’s Department of Elder Affairs operates 17 Memory Disorder Clinics in 13 service areas as part of the statewide Alzheimer’s Disease Initiative. While these clinics do not provide financial assistance per se, they do provide free and scaled-to-income comprehensive diagnostic services to Floridians of any age who are experiencing symptoms which may be caused by Alzheimer’s disease or another form of dementia.
Many of these memory disorder clinics are operated by not-for-profit agencies, and the clinics also develop caregiver resources, provide educational opportunities, and conduct service-related research.
ADI provides services for individuals living with Alzheimer’s disease or related memory disorders and includes services for families, such as access to caregiver training and counseling, case management, and specialized medical supplies and devices.
In addition to the state programs mentioned above, those looking for resources to finance memory care may consider:
In Florida, assisted living facilities of all sizes and types are licensed through the Bureau of Health Facility Regulation.
Assisted living facilities, or ALFs, include private homes, homes for the aged, boarding homes and other buildings which directly or indirectly provide accommodation, meals, and assistance with one or home activities of daily living for more than 24 hours to one or more adults not related to the owner or operator.
Florida provides a number of specialty licenses for ALFs that meet the requirements for a standard license. These specialty licenses are designed to deliver enhanced services above and beyond the usual supports provided in an assisted living facility in order to allow residents to age in place in the most appropriate, least-restrictive placement.
ALFs licensed to provide limited nursing services (LNS) can perform specific procedures and treatments such as ear and eye irrigation, intermittent catheterization, conducting range of motion exercises and conducting nursing assessments performed by a registered nurse.
ALFs licensed as an Extended Congregate Care facility can provide all of the services available under the standard and LNS license regulations in addition to any nursing services which are within the scope of practice for a registered nurse. Facilities that are covered by an ECC license can provide a higher level of care than what is offered in standard ALFs, and this care may include supports and treatments for those with Alzheimer’s and other dementias.
In accordance with Florida state law, each ALF must assess the appropriateness of each prospective resident in relation to the services and supports offered at the ALF. This chart provides an overview of the requirements:
|Residents Who May Be Admitted||Older adults and people who:
|Residents Who May NOT Be Admitted||Those who:
Applicants who may not be Residents in ECC-licensed ALFs must be moved to a hospital or nursing facility if they are bedridden for two weeks or more.
Newly-placed ALF residents must be examined by an advanced RN practitioner or licensed physician no more than 60 days prior to, or 30 days following admission, and a medical report must be provided to the ALF administrator. This report is used to develop a personalized care plan that must be reviewed on a monthly basis by a licensed nurse employed by, or contracted to, the facility.
Residents must also receive a resident agreement which outlines the specific supplies, supports, and accommodations along with the daily, weekly and monthly care cost and information. This agreement must cover resident rights, refund policies, bed hold policies and disclosure of any religious affiliations of the facility.
Unlicensed staff are allowed to assist with the self-administration of medications, while licensed nursing staff are allowed to administer prescription and over-the-counter medications.
Assistance with self-administration of medications can include reading the label to the resident, opening the medication container and removing the prescribed dose, and applying topical medications.
While standard and LNS-licensed ALFs are not required to provide private accommodations, ECC facilities must provide either a private or semi-private room or apartment. A maximum of four residents can share a single bathroom.
ALFs that offer dementia care must have 24-hour staffing and mechanisms in place to monitor residents, and that staff must remain awake if the facility has 17 or more residents.
Facilities with a secure area for residents with dementia must be staffed by workers who have completed at least four hours of specialized training in memory care before being assigned to the secure unit. Direct care staff must continue to complete at least four hours of dementia-specific training for the duration of their employment at the facility.
ALF room and board rates for Florida Medicaid participants are negotiated between the facility operator and the Medicaid State Plan.
Concerns or complaints regarding any licensed health care facility that is regulated by Florida’s Agency for Health Care Administration can be filed by calling the Complaint Administration Unit, Agency for Health Care Administration, at (888) 419-3456. Complaints against unlicensed health care facilities can be reported by calling (888) 419-3456.
|Alzheimer’s Association – Central and North Florida||1-800- 272-3900||The Alzheimer’s Association, Central and North Florida branch serves 43 counties, providing no-cost educational programs, hosting support groups and promoting fundraising efforts towards Alzheimer’s research.|
|Alzheimer’s Association of Southeast Florida||1-800- 272-3900||The Alzheimer’s Association of Southeast Florida provides free information on dementia-specific resources such as residential care facilities, adult day programs, transportation and legal assistance. The Association also helps connect families with clinical trials, operates an online message board, and hosts a number of support groups for patients and caregivers.|
|Alzheimer’s & Dementia Resource Center||407- 436-7750||The Alzheimer’s & Dementia Resource Center offers a number of free workshops, support groups and educational programs for caregivers and patients. These workshops include information on paying for care, understanding the different types of dementia and communication strategies.|
|Lewy Body Dementia Association – Florida||561- 445-3708||The Lewy Body Dementia Association, Florida Chapter, hosts a number of free caregiver support groups statewide where caregivers and patients can learn about the disease and similar conditions such as Alzheimer’s and connect with local resources.|
|Alzheimer’s Association – Florida Gulf Coast||1-800 272-3900||The Florida Gulf Coast Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association maintains up-to-date information on local resources for Alzheimer’s patients and their families. The Association also distributes printed information, provides professional training and operates a number of free online caregiver support programs.|
|The National Institute on Aging – Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias||1-800- 438-4380||Florida residents can access a comprehensive collection of online resources through the National Institute on Aging. There is information about symptoms, diagnosis and treatment options as well as links to current dementia research programs and clinical trials.|