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Cost of Assisted Living in Escondido, California

Page Reviewed / Updated - July 20, 2019

This guide is intended to help seniors and their loved ones understand the various costs associated with senior care in Escondido, in addition to helping seniors become aware of the financial resources provided by the state and other organizations. More information about senior living costs in the state of California as a whole can be found by reading our guide to paying for senior care in California.

The Cost of Senior Living and Care in Escondido

The cost of senior care in Escondido is very near the California state average, with prices for assisted living, home care, adult day care and nursing home care all falling within $200 of the state median, respectively.

On a national level, the cost of senior care in Escondido is higher than the national median for all senior care types surveyed by the Genworth 2018 Cost of Care Survey. Nursing home care is especially costly compared to the national averages, with monthly prices more than $1,000 higher in Escondido.

Note: Senior care cost data isn't available for Escondido, so the data for the closest city, San Diego, was used.

How much does Assisted Living Cost in Escondido?

At a price of $4,500 per month, Escondido's assisted living costs are exactly equal to the state median and the Los Angeles area average. However, there are more budget-friendly cities for assisted living in Southern California, including nearby Riverside and Bakersfield, both at least $1,000 cheaper than in Escondido. On the other end of the spectrum lie areas such as San Francisco, with monthly costs accruing to $5,500.

How much does Home Care Cost in Escondido?

The cost of home care in Escondido is $4,767, approximately four percent cheaper than the California median. Most major metropolitan areas in the state fall within $400 of this amount, including the neighboring area of Riverside. Just like assisted living costs, Escondido's monthly prices for home care are exactly equal to that in Los Angeles.

The cheapest area for home care costs surveyed by the Genworth team is Visalia, with monthly fees almost $500 less than in Escondido. The data also suggest that San Francisco is again a more expensive city for senior care, with home care costs almost 20 percent more costly. 

How much does Adult Day Care Cost in Escondido?

Adult day care in Escondido costs $1,733 per month, making it one of California's more expensive cities for this type of senior care. Though this price is only around $50 more than the California average, most areas throughout the state have costs that are less than the median price, including Los Angeles, Bakersfield, and Riverside.

Responses from the Genworth survey indicate that costs for adult day care fall almost below $1,000 in Visalia, but jump up past $2,000 in Santa Maria.

How much does Nursing Home Costs in Escondido?

Nursing home care is the most expensive type of senior care in California with median monthly costs of $8,365. With a price of $8,517 per month, Escondido's nursing home care costs are on the higher end of the monthly price points collected by the Genworth team. However, Escondido is still much more reasonable than Santa Maria. This metropolitan area has monthly nursing home costs well over $10,000.

For those looking for nursing home care in California on a tighter budget, Visalia's monthly fees of $6,540 might be a more attractive option.

Financial Assistance Programs in Escondido

Medicaid Program in Escondido

The Medicaid program in Escondido is known as Medi-Cal. Medi-Cal offers free to low-cost health care to seniors throughout the state of California who meet eligibility requirements. Medi-Cal is an entitlement program, meaning that all adults who are at least 65 years of age, or younger if legally blind or disabled, will receive benefits. However, there is a financial limit established in order to receive free services:

  • A monthly income below $1,012 if single (with assets not exceeding $2,000)
  • A monthly income below $1,372 if married (with assets not exceeding $3,000)

Seniors are also eligible to receive Medi-Cal services if living in a skilled nursing or intermediate home. Medi-Cal can be used to pay for these facility costs when considered medically necessary. 

Medi-Cal benefits include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Primary and specialty medical care
  • Comprehensive preventive care services
  • Mental health services
  • Hospital visits
  • Vision and dental care
  • Prescription medications

In addition to these services, there are many Medicaid waivers (listed in the next section) that exist to cover senior care costs not covered by Medi-Cal, such as assisted living and in-home care services. Unlike Medi-Cal, these Medicaid waivers often have wait lists to receive services because of program caps or limited funding.Interested seniors in Escondido can fill out an application for Medi-Cal by visiting any of the local family resource centers, online at the Covered California Website or My Benefits CalWin Website or by calling 866-262-9881.

Medicaid Waivers in Escondido

Assisted Living Waiver (ALW) Program

The Assisted Living Waiver program is designed to help seniors who either currently live in a nursing facility, and no longer wish to do so, or seniors who are at risk of nursing home placement and wish to remain at home. Escondido seniors who transition to a home-like living situation can use this program when moving to an Adult Residential Care Facility (ARF), a Residential Care Facility (RCF) or public, subsidized housing. 

To be eligible for this Medicaid waiver, interested applicants must be at least 21 years old and meet the financial requirements:

  • A monthly income limit of $1,242 for a single applicant (with assets not exceeding $2,000)
  • A monthly income limit of $1,682 if married (with assets not exceeding $3,000)

Qualifying seniors who use the ALW program are assigned a Medi-Cal worker to create a care plan to regulate the services needed. Additionally, these workers can help with nursing facility transition coordination for those residents looking to leave nursing care. Once assessed, seniors have access to regular services provided by an assisted living facility:

  • Assistance with activities of daily living
  • Transportation 
  • Medication management
  • Health care services 
  • Skilled nursing
  • Meal services
  • Housekeeping and laundry

Elderly residents of Escondido might wish to be aware that the ALP waiver does not cover room and board costs. To learn more about the application process for this waiver, visit our ALW page.

Community-Based Adult Services (CBAS) Waiver

The Community Based Adult Services waiver allows seniors to receive various services in adult day care centers throughout California. This program was created to decrease the number of seniors who are placed in nursing homes by employing teams of professionals to oversee health care given at these adult day care centers. The health care services provided through the CBAS waiver include many needed benefits:

  • Social services
  • Nursing services
  • Physical, occupational and speech therapies
  • Meals and nutritional counseling
  • Mental health services
  • Therapeutic activities
  • Personal care
  • Transportation to and from the senior's home and the CBAS center

Seniors who are interested in this program need to require a nursing facility level of care or have a severe cognitive impairment. In addition to these functional requirements, the financial requirements for this program are based on a senior's monthly income and assets, and are the same as the ALW program:

  • A monthly income limit of $1,242 for a single applicant (with assets not exceeding $2,000)
  • A monthly income limit of $1,682 if married (with assets not exceeding $3,000)

Elderly citizens who have income over these limits can still qualify for this program through the Share of Cost or Spend Down programs. Seniors in Escondido can apply through the local Area Agency on Aging, San Diego County Aging and Independence Services. For more detailed information about the CBAS program and its benefits, refer to our CBAS guide.

Home and Community-Based Alternatives (HCBA) Waiver

In California, the Home and Community-Based Alternatives (HCBA) waiver is targeted towards physically-disabled seniors who live in a skilled nursing facility, intermediate care facility or will need long term nursing home care within one month. The HCBA waiver program has many services aimed to allow eligible seniors to live at home or in an assisted living facility:

  • Medical equipment maintenance
  • Personal care
  • Training for family caregivers 
  • Case management
  • Various home modifications to enable greater accessibility 
  • Skilled nursing services
  • PERS (Personal Emergency Response service)
  • Respite care (both at home and temporary residential care)

Eligibility requirements for this program are similar to other Medicaid waivers, including necessitating a nursing home level of care. The financial limitations are again the same, plus asset limits:

  • A monthly income limit of $1,242 for a single applicant (with assets not exceeding $2,000)
  • A monthly income limit of $1,682 if married (with assets not exceeding $3,000)

This program is run by various agencies throughout the state based on location. For seniors in Escondido, the HCBA waiver application can be found online or by calling San Ysidro Health at (833) 503-5910. 

Interested applicants might wish to note that this program requires full Medi-Cal eligibility and might have a wait list to receive services. More detailed information can be found in our HCBA waiver guide

Multi-Purpose Senior Services (MPSS) Waiver Program

The Multi-Purpose Senior Services waiver program is intended to allow seniors who are at risk for nursing home placement to continue living at home, much like the previous three Medicaid waivers.  This incomplete list of benefits varies more because these services are designed to meet the individual needs of seniors in Escondido and throughout the rest of the state:

  • Money management
  • Adult day care
  • Assistance with activities of daily living
  • Care management
  • Respite care
  • Transportation 
  • Congregate or home-delivered meals
  • Translation services
  • Minor home repair

Requirements for this program include the same functional and financial limitations for the other waivers (see any of the three previous waivers to find the specific amounts). Again, this waiver program is not an entitlement, and limited resources mean that wait lists might be barriers to entry. Elderly citizens of Escondido can apply through the local Area Agency on Aging, San Diego County Aging and Independence Services. The application process is outlined in our MPSS guide.  

Seniors who participate in the MPSS program can also receive services from the In-Home Supportive Services program. 

Other Financial Assistance Programs in Escondido

In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS)

For Escondido seniors looking to remain in their own homes with a caretaker, the In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) program might be a good fit. Through IHSS, seniors can select their own caretaker (including a family member or a spouse) to assist them who will be paid by Medi-Cal. Depending on the applicants' needs, the caretaker will be allowed to work a specific number of hours per month (but not overtime) and paid an hourly rate set by Medi-Cal.

Seniors who reside in Escondido can reach out to the San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency or call (800) 510-2020.  Additional information about this program can be found in our IHSS guide.

Program for All Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) Program

The Program for All Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) program is a national program that provides health and social care services to seniors living at home. These services are often offered at the local PACE center and might include hot meals, physical therapy, medical appointments and recreational activities. To qualify to receive PACE services, a senior needs to be at least 55 years old, be deemed in need of a nursing facility level of care and need help with activities of daily living.If the elderly applicant is eligible for Medi-Cal without Share of Cost, the PACE program benefits are free. Other financial restrictions apply. To find out more, contact San Diego County's PACE center, St. Paul’s PACE, at (619) 677-3800.

More Senior Living Resources in Escondido

Resource Phone Number Description
Housing Authority of San Diego County (760) 741-5922 The Housing Authority of San Diego County runs Escondido's Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher Program, assisting low-income seniors in search of affordable housing.
Escondido Senior Services Taxi Vouchers (760) 480-0611 The Escondido Senior Services provides taxi vouchers to low-income seniors 60 years of age and older for transportation to and from medical appointments.
The Park Avenue Community Center Nutrition Program (760) 839-4803 The Park Avenue Community Center serves lunch meals every Monday-Friday for a suggested donation, but seniors aged 60 and older who are unable to pay can eat for free. Reservations should be made 24 hours in advance.
San Diego County Family Caregiver Support Program (800) 510-2020 The San Diego County Family Caregiver Support Program provides free respite care to full-time caregivers of elderly persons in Escondido. Additionally, this program also provides care management, minor home modifications, support groups and counseling for no charge for seniors and their caregivers.
San Diego County Cool Zones (800) 339-4661 San Diego County has created various Cool Zones (areas where seniors can beat the heat throughout the summer) to help keep seniors' air conditioning bills low. These centers are air-conditioned and can serve as a resting point before seniors venture outside in the heat again or where they can spend summer days without paying for their own air conditioning. Throughout Escondido, there are seven designated cool zones.