Financial Assistance, Costs and Payment Options for Eldercare in New York

This webpage will help New York residents understand assisted living, home care, and adult day care costs throughout the state. It also explores the payment options and financial assistance programs available to assist in caring for the elderly, be that in residential care or for aging in place at home.

The programs outlined here are comprehensive of what is available from the state of New York, but is not comprehensive of what is available at a national level. To search for assistance nationwide, and to explore all of your options, please use our Resource Locator Tool. Finding the program that is most suitable for your circumstances is key.

 Did You Know?  Due the state's vast geographic area and variations in population density, New York has one of the widest ranges of eldercare costs in the nation.

New York Elder Care Costs

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Assisted Living

In 2017, the average cost of assisted living in New York is $4,186 / month. However, in the most expensive areas of the state, Albany, Queens, Ithaca, and Long Island, the monthly cost ranges from $5,150 - $6,550. Less expensive areas include Brooklyn, Glens Falls, Manhattan, Kingston, Utica, and surprisingly, Staten Island, where assisted living costs are in the $2,550 - $3,470 / month range. Alzheimer's residential care throughout New York, sometimes called Memory Care, adds approximately $1,150 to the monthly cost of assisted living. This is due to the increased level of care and security that dementia patients require.

Home Care

Home care across the state on average costs $22.50 / hour. The outer area of New York City, Utica, Elmira, Albany, and Syracuse are the most expensive areas for home care, where the range is $24.25 - $25.50 / hour. Brooklyn, Queens, Watertown, the Bronx, Glens Falls, and Staten Island are the least costly areas for home care where the hourly rate averages from $20 to $21.50. Home health care is another option for elderly care and is ideal for those who require a bit more intensive care. This type of care averages $22.50 / hour statewide. 

Adult Day Care

Non-residential adult day care continues to be the least expensive care option and costs on average $87 / day. However, this represents a notable increase of approximately 15% since 2014. Adult day care is most expensive in Brooklyn, Manhattan, Kingston, and Staten Island, where it costs between $117 and $192 / day. Adult day care is most affordable in the areas of Binghamton, Buffalo, Elmira, and Watertown. In these areas, the average cost is between $50 and $72 / day.  



New York Financial Assistance Programs

Medicaid Programs & Waivers

Medicaid is a program for disabled and elderly individuals with limited income and resources. In addition to paying for nursing home care, and some personal care, for qualified New York residents, New York offers two Medicaid waiver programs that help pay for assisted living and home care. These waiver programs allow seniors to avoid or delay nursing home placement.

1) The Managed Long Term Care Waiver (MLTC) helps residents with care services, such as personal care assistance and housekeeping, in their home or in an assisted living facility. Other benefits may include adult day care, home modifications, meal delivery, personal emergency response systems, dental services, and more. Read about eligibility and benefits for the MLTC Waiver.

The Consumer-Directed Personal Assistance Program (CDPAP) is a way for individuals to receive services under MMLTC. This program will pay for personal care for seniors in their homes. Via this program, participants have the flexibility to select some of their own care providers, and certain family members can be hired as paid caregivers.

2) The Assisted Living Program (ALP) helps individuals who qualify for nursing home care, but prefer to live in an assisted living residence. This program helps to cover the cost of room and board, and often times the assisted living facility will offer additional services, such as housekeeping and personal care. The program is also open to those who are not on Medicaid. Read more about the ALP.

To qualify for Medicaid in the state of New York in 2017, individual residents must have a monthly income of less than $825 and couples less than $1,209. The resources or assets limit is $14,850 for single applicants and $21,750 for couples. When calculating assets, the state does not include the value of a home, provided it is worth less than $840,000. Household items, personal effects, and a single vehicle are also considered exempt assets.

Persons with income and assets over these limits can still become eligible for Medicaid assistance. Individuals whose incomes exceed the limit, but have high medical expenses, may qualify through a Medicaid spend-down program called Medicaid Excess Income. Persons with assets valued over the limit might become eligible by working with a Medicaid planner to structure their resources appropriately. If there is some question regarding qualification, it is strongly recommended individuals contact a Medicaid Planner prior to applying for Medicaid. Read about the pros & cons of Medicaid planning.


State Assistance Programs

New York offers five programs for lower income residents that do not qualify for Medicaid. These programs provide financial assistance to help seniors with the cost of care and other medical expenses.

1) The Expanded In-home Services for the Elderly Program (EISEP) provides non-medical personal care for seniors in their homes. This program allows for consumer direction, meaning a senior may hire the caregiver of their choosing, including family members. Other benefits available via this program include adult day care, personal emergency response systems, respite care, and transportation assistance.  Read more about EISEP qualifications and benefits.

2) The Elderly Pharmaceutical Insurance Coverage (EPIC) program provides two levels of Medicare Wraparound coverage for prescription drugs. This program assists with the coverage of both generic and brand name medications. Read about EPIC eligibility and benefits.

3) The Community Services for the Elderly (CSE) program provides a variety of services and non-medical care for seniors to enable them to continue to live at home. Services include personal care, adult day care, respite care, minor residential repairs, and personal emergency response systems. Learn more about CSE and its eligibility

4) The New York Residential Emergency Services to Offer Repairs to the Elderly (RESTORE) program assists seniors in making emergency repairs to their homes so that they are able to live in safe environments. Benefits include structural, heating, plumbing, and electrical repairs. Other modifications, such as grab bars and wheelchair ramps, may be done via this program. Read more about the RESTORE program and how to qualify. 

5) New York’s Naturally Occurring Retirement Communities (NORC) is a phenomenon where a neighborhood or building has a large number of elderly residents. Non-profit agencies provide services, such as nursing, case management, housecleaning, and social activities, for these naturally occurring communities. Read more about NORC qualifications and benefits.

Not yet available, but coming in January of 2018, NY will offer a Paid Family Leave Benefits Law that will pay certain family members to care for their loved ones. Make note, this law will be carried out in phases and is expected to be fully executed in 2021. 


Other Financial Options for Care

In addition to the state specific options that help pay for care, there are many non-profit and federal options. Use our Resource Locator Tool to find other programs, including the best ones for you or your loved one, that help pay for or reduce the cost of care. There are also programs that help veterans with assisted living and there are eldercare loans available in New York.


Finding Affordable Care

To help families find affordable care in New York, we've partnered with several organizations that maintain databases of care providers. These organizations all provide free services that match an individual's specific care needs with care providers in their preferred geographic area. Click here to find affordable care.