How Much Does Disability Pay For An 18 Year Old The Challenges of Special Needs Housing: Support Services

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The Challenges of Special Needs Housing: Support Services

The last major hurdle to getting a young adult with special needs (YASN) into their own home when they come of age (or are otherwise ready) is getting the necessary support services. Simply put, very few families can provide the support a YASN needs, either personally or by paying an agency to provide it. Almost all will need financial assistance to support their YASNs. Fortunately, that part is easier today than in previous decades. Unfortunately, it is still not without its challenges.

Medicaid

The primary source of support service funding for most YASNs is Medicaid. In years past, Medicaid only paid for certain specific types of disability, but recently a variety of “waivers” have been created (because they waive the usual rules of what Medicare will pay). The home-based and community-based waiver has given states permission to create programs that pay for home-based or community-based services of all kinds.

Of course, that doesn’t mean all states would do it: Medicaid provides the money, but states themselves have to create and fund the programs. There is no guarantee that your state will have a program that applies to your specific special needs. It also doesn’t mean you can get into an existing program; almost every state has a waiting list for most services related to adults with special needs.

Non-Medicaid funding

Unfortunately, when you get into the other levels of funding, it quickly becomes impossible to talk in anything but the broadest terms. Each state, county and community has its own unique opportunities and obstacles. It’s safe to say this: You should sit down with your family and research each of these potential funding sources:

• Family support

• Private financing

• Private medical insurance

• State funding

• Local financing

• Scholarships and foundations

What can I expect to pay?

While the question of how much your support services will cost varies greatly depending on your precise needs and where you live, it’s still worth talking about. Geography matters quite a bit; for example, in Georgia, a family can expect to spend an average of $972 per year out of pocket to raise a child with special needs into adulthood; in Massachusetts, it costs just $562.

Similarly, as a national average, for a YASN housing environment, it costs:

• $20/day for non-medical “monitoring” home visits,

• $61/day for 6 hours of adult day care,

• $165/day for 24-hour non-medical services in a family setting,

• $456/day (or $19/hour) for home health care i

• $634/day for 24-hour services in a group home.

These numbers can vary by 50% in either direction, as you might guess from looking at the Georgia and Massachusetts numbers above, but they can serve as a rough estimate of what you should be looking for. Obviously, the less you need in terms of support, the less you have to pay, but getting the support you need should be your main concern, not saving money. Don’t make it more difficult by trying to skimp on your support structure – there will be many other challenges to deal with once you settle into a home with the support you need.

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