Article Series

“Spend Down” - Different Meanings to Different Medicaid Groups

Article submitted by Dick Dorrough, Certified Medicaid Planner. Dick Dorrough is with Medicaid for Colorado and offers professional long term care Medicaid assistance help with Long Term Care Medicaid Applications and Planning. He can be reached at 303-829-0205 or visit the group’s website.

NOV 2016 - COLORADO - You should be aware of how the term “Spend Down” is used with different groups within the Colorado Medicaid community. Knowing the difference will avoid heartache to the adult children helping their loved ones who may be ultimately headed to a Medicaid community for care.

For individuals primarily concerned with preparing Medicaid application for Colorado Long Term Care, the meaning is to reduce the applicant’s assets to below the $2,000 level in order to submit the Medicaid application. Certain assets are excluded from this threshold such as a one car, a primary residence within limits but subject to recovery, irrevocable final expense insurance, and most personal property.

For family members contacting assisted living and long term care facilities, the definition of “Spend Down” couldn’t be more different. Particularly with respect to assisted living facilities, the term in fact means “how many months of private payments does the family have to pay before the facility will accept the Medicaid reimbursement rate.” Because the reimbursement rate by Medicaid to assisted living facilities is much lower than the “private pay” rate, the facility must charge a much higher rate to the resident in the early months in order to be able to accept the Medicaid reimbursement rate later on. If this doesn’t sound fair, just remember these facilities must be profitable in order to keep their doors open and be able to provide a place for families in need to place their loved ones.

More about Dick Dorrough, Certified Medicaid Planner and Chief Benefits Consultant
In 2010, Dick Dorrough founded War Veterans Association of Colorado to assist veterans and their families in locating crisis funding for long term care. In the same year, he achieved his FINRA designation of Certified Medicaid Planner. In 2015, Dick started Medicaid for Colorado to assist families in planning for Colorado Long Term Care Medicaid. Dick can be reached at 303-829-0205.

Tags: spend down, Colorado, Medicaid, Certified Medicaid Planner,

Posted November 2016 on