By Kimberly Jensen
Quail Park Senior Resource Advocate 

Does Insurance Pay for Senior Communities?


Last updated 11/11/2023 at 12:50pm | View PDF

I am looking into moving to a Senior Independent/Assisted Living community. Does insurance pay for it?

Independent living and assisted living communities in Tulare County are private pay. If you were wise enough to get a long-term care insurance policy that includes residential care facilities, it will help you pay the assisted living fees.

Long-term care insurance policies are purchased separately from health insurance and have hefty premiums, but they are life savers when you start using them to cover expenses.

Once it is activated, check to make sure that you no longer pay the premium. If you have a long-term care policy, look at it and see how much it will pay per day towards your assisted living fees. This will give you a better idea as to how much you can spend when the time comes.

Many seniors want to stay in their homes for as long as possible, but with that comes isolation and possible falls and injuries. I always recommend that seniors who insist on living in their homes have a person they call twice a day to check in with them to say that they are alright.

Many independent and assisted living facilities will allow friends to share apartments, which means they split the cost of senior living, making it easier on the finances. Make sure you get along well with your roommate because if one of the two of you are no longer in the apartment, the remaining party will have to pay the full price.

Independent living and assisted living are private pay and do not accept Medicare or Medi-Cal. Each community has different price ranges, so I suggest you visit all of them in Tulare County. This will give you a better idea of what is included in each community and will enable you to get the look and feel of each one.

Once you have chosen the senior community that fits your needs the best, make sure to share that information with your family, just in case something happens and they need to move you in on their own.

I always say to do your homework before a crisis occurs. It is much more difficult to transition into assisted living if you are not feeling well. Your family will appreciate that you did the homework before visiting the communities. That means they do not have to decide on their own which one they think you might like.

I am looking ahead as to what Christmas gifts to buy for seniors. Do you have any ideas?

What a wonderfully thoughtful question. When considering gifts for seniors, think of comfort, fun and treats. Anything that is soft and fuzzy is always appreciated. Socks, sweaters, lap blankets, hats and gloves are always great gifts for seniors.

Items in the "fun category" can include puzzles, word finding and crossword puzzle books, and western or romance novels. If your senior is visually impaired, you can always get them audio books to listen to. A picture frame filled with family pictures is always a hit and a constant reminder as to who loves them and is thinking about them.

Treats are also a hit. Salty and/or sweet goodies are like a party in their mouth. If they have issues with their teeth, I suggest chocolate that is soft and avoid anything with nuts or that may be difficult to chew. Cookies, pies or cupcakes are always appreciated. If they are diabetic, there are a lot of options on Amazon for you to choose from.

The greatest gift you can give a senior is your time. Time to visit, time to go out to lunch, time to vacation or just time to write a handwritten note saying that you are thinking about them. We get so busy in our own lives; we take for granted that they will always be here with us. Take the time and spend it with them. You will not regret it later, when they are no longer here to enjoy your company.

Kimberly Jensen has been working with Quail Park as a Senior Resource Advocate for over ten years and has helped hundreds of families find solutions to their senior problems. If you have a question, you can send it to her at or call (559) 737-7443.


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