Page Reviewed / Updated - Jan. 2019
The guide that follows provides detailed information on the cost of senior care in Denver. This includes the resources and programs that provide affordable care and financial assistance to seniors in the area. Visit our state page to find out more about the options available in Colorado.
The cost of senior living in Denver is relatively average when compared with other major cities throughout the state. In fact, according to theGenworth Cost of Care Survey 2018, the costs of both home care and adult day care sit exactly at the state averages. But when looking at other levels of care, costs in Denver are slightly below what's seen in some of Colorado's largest cities.
The average monthly cost of assisted living in Denver is $4,700, which is $700 above the state median and among the highest cost in the state. Costs in Boulder and Colorado Springs are slightly higher, and in Fort Collins, a city that's only slightly smaller than Denver, the cost is considerably lower at $3,950. In smaller cities such as Pueblo, Greeley, and Grand Junction, the average cost of assisted living is far more affordable.
Assuming a senior receives 44 hours of care per week, the average monthly cost of home care in Denver is $4,767. When compared to other cities in the state, Denver's costs are on the higher end of the spectrum. While Denver is considerably less expensive than Boulder and Fort Collins, other major cities across the state, including Colorado Springs, have average home care costs that are less expensive.
In Denver, the average cost of adult day care is $1,625 per month, which is right in line with the state median. While the cost in Denver is higher than in Boulder, Fort Collins and Grand Junction, the difference is minimal. When compared to Pueblo, where the average monthly cost of adult day care is $1,950, Denver is quite affordable.
Health First Colorado is a long-term care Medicaid state plan that helps eligible seniors in Denver to pay for the cost of senior care. It covers some personal assistance services as well as nursing home care. For seniors who prefer to remain in their home, a Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) waiver plan is available. This plan is designated for elderly and/or disabled individuals who require assistance while living independently.
Both Health First Colorado and the state's HCBS waiver program consider an individual's income, marital status and assets when determining eligibility for assistance. To be eligible, seniors must have an income of $2,250 per month or less and have $2,000 or less in assets. Married applicants who are applying alone are not required to consider spousal income and may transfer a portion of their income to their spouse if necessary. You can apply for Health First Colorado online, in person at a local county office or application assistance site, or by phoning 1-800-221-3943.
Home and Community Based Services Waiver (HCBS)
The HCBS Waiver for the Elderly, Blind and Disabled is for eligible seniors who live independently either at home or in a care facility. It provides assistance with home modifications and personal emergency response systems, as well as adult day care, respite care, and transportation. An option to this waiver called Consumer Directed Attendant Support Services (CDASS) provides seniors with the option to choose a care provider outside of the healthcare industry, such as a close friend or family member. As of 2018, this Medicaid waiver had no enrollment cap or waiting list.
Old Age Pension Program (OAP)
The Old Age Pension (OAP) Program is available to seniors aged 60 to 64 who have a monthly income totaling $788 or less and resources totaling $2,000 or less. Married couples may have resources totaling up to $3,000. Financial assistance is provided to increase income to a minimally acceptable level; therefore, payouts may vary depending on a variety of factors including a senior's monthly income fluctuations and the amount that the state determines to be an acceptable monthly income.
The maximum monthly benefit is $788, and this amount may be reduced as a result of Social Security, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), or Veteran's Benefits. In addition to financial assistance, this program may provide other benefits that include dental and health coverage to seniors who do not qualify for the Health First Colorado Medicaid program. More information can be foundhere.
Adult Foster Care Program (AFC)
The Adult Foster Care Program provides housing and assistance for low-income seniors who require 24-hour non-medical supervision. Living arrangements under the AFC program are similar to assisted living, but facilities are typically smaller homes with a family-type environment. In addition to housing, these programs provide seniors with meals, personal care, transportation, 24-hour supervision, light recreation and medication assistance.
Seniors can apply for this program by visiting their local county's Department of Human Services. Seniors who are enrolled in the HCBS waiver program or receive a Home Care Allowance are not eligible for the AFC program. More information can be foundhere.
Home Care Allowance Program (HCA)
The Home Care Allowance (HCA) Program provides eligible seniors with additional income to pay for unskilled services that allow them to continue living independently and avoid nursing care. Benefits received under this program can be used to pay any person over the age of 18, including friends, neighbors or family members, for performing basic services and assistance with Activities of Daily Living (ADLs), including things like:
The program is designed to allow seniors to remain living in their home as long as possible and is consumer-directed, which means that participants can allocate the funds however they see fit, provided that benefits are spent within the parameters of the program.
Eligibility is not age-dependent. To qualify for this program, an assessment of the senior's ability to perform ADLs is required. Additionally, their income must not exceed $750 monthly, and assets must not exceed $2,000 or $3,000 for married couples. If the senior owns the home he or she resides in, its total value must not exceed $572,000. Seniors receiving benefits under the HCBS waiver program or the AFC program are not eligible for this benefit.
The Colorado Respite Coalition (CRC) provides education to families and caregivers in the Denver area with the intention of improving respite care for local seniors. The CRC awards grants to families and caregivers to assist in providing quality respite care.
InnovAge PACE provides low-cost or no-cost nursing and memory care to eligible seniors in the Denver area. Seniors enrolled in the program are provided with a team of medical experts and a personal care program.
The Denver Elderly or Disabled Refund Program provides eligible seniors with a partial property tax refund. Eligibility is based on age and income.
The Colorado Department of Revenue offers eligible seniors a quarterly rebate on property tax, rent, and heating costs. Eligibility is based on age and income.
The Colorado Energy Office aids seniors who receive SSI or OAP benefits in reducing energy and increasing the efficiency of their home by providing financial assistance with weatherization, including window replacement and furnace repair.