Without question, using outside assistance to care for a loved one with dementia or Alzheimer’s can be very expensive. Of course, costs vary depending on the type of care used. Home care, adult day care, assisted living and nursing home care all provide vastly different services and have dramatically varying costs. However, there are many subtle factors that influence that cost of care, such as:
For regional and local cost differences within each state, use this Cost of Care Calculator.
Home care is almost always charged on an hourly basis. Fortunately, home care providers do not charge higher hourly rates for persons suffering from dementia or with Alzheimer’s Disease. It should be noted that there is Home Health Care and Non-Medical Home Care. Most persons with dementia do not require home health care.
Like all types of care, there is considerable geographic variation in the cost. Nationwide in 2018, the average costs is $21 / hour. In the southern and mid-western United States, state averages for home care are between $16 – $20 / hour. In New England, the mid-Atlantic states and on the West Coast, state averages are in the range of $20 – $24 per hour.
Adult day care is usually billed on a daily basis in half-day increments. There are two types of adult day care; adult day social and adult day health. Surprisingly there is not a lot of cost variance between the two. The greater variance is the state in which one resides.
In the deep south and the plains states, adult day care usually costs $50 – $70 per day. In the Northeast and on the West Coast, one should expect to pay $80 – $110 per day. Regardless of where one lives, adult day care, hour by hour, is the most cost-effective form of care for persons with dementia. It is worth noting that often there exists adult day care centers that specialize in caring for persons with dementia. One should expect to pay $5 – $10 addition per day for the higher level of care provided.
Assisted living for persons with dementia is often called Memory Care. Memory care typically provides higher levels of care as well as greater security to prevent wandering. Memory care costs vary greatly by community with some residences even in the same geographic area charging almost twice as much as others.
Nationally, in 2018 the average cost of assisted living / memory care for persons with moderate dementia is $4,500 / month. In the southern states and through the plains, the monthly cost can be as low as $3,200 / month. In the Northeast and on the West Coast, costs are much higher. Families can expect monthly costs upwards of $5,500. Free assistance is available to help families find affordable care that meets their needs. Get help here.
For persons with later stage dementia, nursing home care may be necessary. Like adult day care, nursing homes charge by the day. The nationally average for a shared room in a nursing in 2018 is $235 per day. States average range from $150 – $300 daily with the exception of Alaska where care costs are significantly higher. Unlike assisted living communities, nursing homes do not charge additionally for individuals with dementia.