Santa Anita Assisted Living

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Santa Anita ALW Program

Understanding and navigating the intricacies of healthcare initiatives and services can often be a daunting task. This guide aims to simplify one such initiative, the Assisted Living Waiver (ALW) program, for residents of Orange County. The ALW program is designed to provide seniors who require nursing home-level care with the financial assistance they need to live in an assisted living community instead.

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Santa Anita ALW

I. A Quick Look at Assisted Living and the Waiver Program

Seniors who live alone can get a lot out of assisted living. Seniors can enjoy the company of other seniors in the neighborhood, and they can also benefit from the individualized care and attention they receive from highly trained, loving staff. But these benefits often come with a high cost that many low-income adults may not be able to afford.

This is where the program for Assisted Living Waiver comes in. Through this healthcare program, seniors can get the care they need in a setting that feels more like home, instead of an artificial setting like a nursing home.

The program gives adults who need care at the level of a nursing home the chance to live in assisted living communities instead. The main objective is to raise the standard of living for seniors by giving them a more cozy and homey space and making sure they get the medical care and help they need.

II. What the Assisted Living Waiver Program Can Do for You

The ALW program includes many important services for adults who want to live on their own. These are some of the main things that the program covers:

  • Personal care: helping with things like eating, cleaning, bathing, and going to the bathroom. This makes it easier and more comfortable for adults to keep themselves clean and do their daily tasks.
  • Mobility assistance: helping seniors with tasks that involve moving around and making sure they stay safe as they do so.
  • Medicine Administration: The training covers how to give recommended drugs, which lowers the risk of medicine mistakes and makes sure that healthcare is managed properly.
  • Transportation Services: Giving people rides to medical appointments or other events, so they don’t have to worry about how to get there.
  • Health-Related Services: This includes a lot of different health-related services, such as nursing care at the right level. This makes sure that adults can get the right medical care when they need it.
  • Social and recreational activities: planning a range of social and recreational events suitable for different age groups, encouraging community involvement and improving mental health.
  • Housework and laundry services: Relieving seniors of these chores, help with housework and laundry gives them more time to do fun things.
  • Food: Giving adults food makes sure they get enough nutrition, which is good for their health as a whole.
  • Nursing Home Transition Care: The program also helps people who are leaving nursing homes get settled in their new homes by giving them transition care.

These perks make sure that adults who take part in the ALW program have a great quality of life while getting the care they need.

III. What You Need to Do to be Eligible for the Assisted Living Waiver Program

People must meet the following standards in order to be eligible for the ALW program:

  • Age: The person applying must be at least 21 years old.
  • Medical: Applicants must be fully eligible for Medi-Cal and not have to pay anything toward their care. This means they must be able to get Medi-Cal and not have to spend some of their own money on health care before Medi-Cal pays for it.
  • Care Needs: Applicants must have the same level of care needs as people who live in nursing homes and get Medi-Cal. Usually, this means that they need help with things like cleaning, getting dressed, eating, and moving around.

It’s important to remember that the program’s goal is to help people who would need nursing home care otherwise. So, the standards are meant to make sure that only people who really need care can apply.

You must also be ready to live in an assisted living facility instead of a nursing home in order to be qualified. You should be able to live safely in a public housing project or an assisted living center. Alameda, Contra Costa, Fresno, Kern, Orange, Riverside, Sacramento, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Francisco, San Joaquin, San Mateo, Santa Clara, and Sonoma counties all offer ALW services. You should also be willing to live in an assisted living facility in one of these counties.

IV. Financial Obligations and Ways to Get Help

The ALW program pays for some services, but the member still has to pay for their own room and food. No matter how much money you made, the “room and board rate” in 2019 was around $1,039 or $1,059 per month. People who can’t pay this minimum monthly cost might be able to find a place in public housing that is funded by the government.

Elderly people with low incomes who are having a hard time paying their bills can get help with money in a number of ways. These are some of them:

  • The Section 202 Program of HUD helps adults who qualified find affordable homes. It’s a rent-assisted living program that helps seniors live as freely as possible by providing services like cleaning, transportation, and meals.
  • Veteran’s Benefits: In addition to the VA income, the US Department of Veterans Affairs set up the Aid & Attendance program, which gives need-based cash help to seniors who are qualified. You can use these savings to pay for long-term care.
  • Medicaid: There are a number of different programs in Medicaid that can help older people pay for assisted living. But each state has its own rules about how these programs work.
  • Help from the state that isn’t Medicaid: Long Beach and other parts of Orange County have their own benefit programs that can help people pay for assisted living. It’s worth looking into the specifics to see if you qualify.
  • Long-Term Care Insurance: This type of insurance may or may not help you, which depends on the type of insurance you have. Talk to your insurance company about this to see if there is any way they can help you save money.
  • Social Security: While Social Security does not directly pay for assisted living, there are ways that people and their families can get some benefits. This is different in each state. Talking to the Social Security office in your area will help you understand the standards and rewards better.

V. How to Apply for the Program to Help Pay for Assisted Living

If you meet the standards and want to take advantage of the ALW program’s perks, the first thing you need to do to apply for the waiver is to fill out a Medi-Cal application and send it to the Department of Human Services in your county. It’s important to remember that the state doesn’t decide who can get Medi-Cal payments. Get information about how to apply for Medi-Cal benefits by calling the county office in your area.

If this application is accepted, you can then get in touch with one of the care coordination services on the list and ask for a permit for assisted living. It can take anywhere from three to six months from the time you send in your application to the time you get proof.

The Assisted Living Waiver Program is offered in 15 California counties, including Orange County. However, you don’t have to live in one of these counties to be eligible for the waiver. In other words, you can get the benefits of the waiver by going into an assisted living home in any county that has the ALW program.

Don’t let not having enough money stop you from getting the good care and active society you deserve. Check to see if you can get help through the Assisted Living Waiver program, and then check out Santa Anita Assisted Living.

VI. Knowing the Specifics of Your Choices for Assisted Living

Keep in mind that assisted living communities are very different in how they take payments and what kinds of help are allowed. If you’re thinking about moving to an assisted living center, you should talk to people from each one you’re thinking about. You can get specific information from them about how much it costs to live in their town and the types of financial aid they accept.

Now that you know more about the options, you can make a choice that fits your income and your care needs. Don’t be afraid to ask specific questions about what the price includes, such as food, room service, personal care, and medical help.

Remember that the goal is not just to find a cheap choice, but also to make sure that you or your loved ones can live a good life and get the care they need.

VII. Looking into Alternatives to Assisted Living

A lot of seniors find the ALW program and assisted living homes to be great options, but they’re not the only ones. Home care might be a better or more reasonable choice for some people. Some people may do better in a private care home, which is also called a board and care home.

Every one of these choices has pros and cons, and the best one for each person will depend on their own wants and circumstances. Before making a choice, it’s smart to look at all of your choices. During this process, social workers, care managers, and other experts can be very helpful.

VIII. Getting Professional Help and Making Plans Ahead of Time

As we already said, this guide is meant to give you a broad look at the Assisted Living Waiver program. However, for more information and professional help, it’s always a good idea to talk to a qualified financial agent.

Making plans for elder care is an ongoing process. Think about what you will need in the future and how your health might change. A person may not need the same kind of help in an assisted living home in the future as they do now. With the help of professionals, planning ahead can make changes easier when they need to happen.

Assisted living homes can get full very quickly, especially those that take the Assisted Living Waiver. So, it’s important to start the application process early and think about how long you might have to wait.

IX. Last Thoughts

The Assisted Living Waiver program is a useful tool that can help adults in Orange County and all over California get the care they need in the place they choose. Seniors and their families can make smart choices about their care if they know what it takes to be eligible, how much money is needed, and how to apply.

This guide should have given you useful information to help you understand the Assisted Living Waiver Program. Don’t forget that you’re not going through this process by yourself.

There are many people and groups that can help you along the way, such as care managers, social workers, and financial experts. Even though the process might be hard, you can find the best care choice for your needs and live a happy, healthy life with the right information and help.

Assisted Living Waiver (ALW) Program FAQ

1. What exactly does ALW mean?

ALW stands for Assisted Living Waiver. It’s a program managed by the California Department of Health Care Services. The ALW provides Medi-Cal beneficiaries who require nursing-level care with services in a more home-like setting.

2. Who can apply to the Assisted Living Waiver (ALW) Program?

Eligible applicants for the ALW program must:

  • Be over 21 years old.
  • Have complete Medi-Cal coverage without personal cost shares.
  • Require the level of care typically provided in nursing homes, as covered by Medi-Cal.

3. What types of services does the Assisted Living Waiver program pay for?

The ALW program covers a variety of services such as:

  • Personal care for daily tasks like eating, grooming, and bathing.
  • Mobility assistance.
  • Medication administration.
  • Transportation to medical appointments.
  • Social and recreational activities coordination.
  • Housework and laundry assistance.
  • Meal services.

4. What fees does the Assisted Living Waiver not cover?

The ALW program does not cover costs associated with room and board (food and housing).

5. How can I apply for the Orange County Assisted Living Waiver Program?

To apply for the ALW in Orange County:

  • Submit a Medi-Cal application to the Orange County Department of Human Services.
  • Once approved, contact a care coordinating service to request assisted living approval.
  • The application process can take between three to six months.

6. Is the Assisted Living Waiver Program limited to Orange County residents?

The ALW program operates in 15 specific counties in California, but residency in these counties is not a prerequisite for eligibility. If you reside in an assisted living facility within a county that participates in the ALW program, you are eligible.

7. Are there other options for persons with low incomes to receive cash assistance?

Yes, low-income adults have several financial aid options:

  • HUD Section 202 Program: Supports affordable housing for seniors.
  • Veteran’s Benefits: Includes the Aid & Attendance program for veterans needing long-term care.
  • Medicaid: Offers various programs tailored to seniors’ needs.
  • Non-Medicaid State Assistance: Local programs such as those in parts of Orange County.
  • Social Security: Provides benefits that can indirectly support living expenses.
  • Long-Term Care Insurance: Depending on the policy, it might cover some costs of assisted living.

Consulting with a financial advisor or directly contacting these programs can provide more detailed eligibility and benefits information.


Senior Care Advocacy Organizations:

Several organizations provide resources and advocacy for seniors and their families. 

These may include:

In addition to these resources, our facility offers continued support for our residents and their families, ensuring that the transition to assisted living is as smooth and stress-free as possible. We are committed to being a partner in your care journey, always prioritizing your comfort and well-being.

Selecting the right assisted living facility is a crucial decision that requires meticulous consideration of several factors. Here are some key aspects to consider when choosing such a facility, and how our facility is the perfect fit in our area:

1. Level of Care:

The level of care offered varies across different facilities. Some provide basic help with daily activities such as bathing, dressing, and meal preparation, while others offer extensive medical care. The level of care needed will depend on the individual’s health status and needs.

Our Facility: We provide a comprehensive and personalized level of care. We cater to both individuals who need assistance with daily activities and those who need more specialized medical attention. Our staff includes registered nurses available 24/7, ensuring that residents’ healthcare needs are met promptly and professionally.

2. Location:

The location of the facility is a crucial factor, especially if the individual would like frequent visits from family and friends. It’s also important to consider the proximity to medical facilities, local amenities, and the general environment and ambiance of the area.

Our Facility:  We’re conveniently located close to town, with easy access to medical facilities, shopping centers, parks, and cultural attractions. The facility itself is in a peaceful, green, and quiet neighborhood, providing a calming and pleasant environment for our residents.

3. Amenities:

 Assisted living facilities can offer a range of amenities such as fitness centers, swimming pools, in-house restaurants, and more. The types of amenities offered can significantly impact the resident’s lifestyle and enjoyment of their time at the facility.

Our Facility:  Our residents enjoy a wide variety of amenities, including a an onsite restaurant offering nutritious and delicious meals, beautiful communal spaces for socializing, and a comprehensive program of activities to keep our residents engaged and entertained.

4. Staff and Community:

 It’s essential to consider the quality of the staff and the overall community in the facility. The staff should be professional, friendly, and caring, while the community should be welcoming and inclusive.

Our Facility:  We take pride in our highly trained, compassionate, and dedicated staff who prioritize our residents’ well-being and comfort. Our facility fosters a close-knit community with a warm and inclusive atmosphere. We frequently organize events and activities that encourage social interaction and foster strong bonds among residents.

5. Cost:

 Cost is often a significant factor. Different facilities have different pricing structures, so it’s crucial to understand what the costs cover and if any additional services may incur extra charges.

Our Facility:  We maintain transparency with our pricing, ensuring residents and their families understand the cost of care. We offer different packages to accommodate various budgets without compromising the quality of care.

6. Care Coordinators:

 Care coordinators are a crucial part of the team, helping to navigate the complexities of senior care. They can answer questions, provide information about services and amenities, and assist with the admission process.

Our Facility:  Our experienced care coordinators are available to guide you through the application process and to continue assisting with any concerns or needs during your stay. They can be reached at  (626)442-8410.

7. Social Workers:

 Social workers provide emotional support and help address various social issues. They can assist with everything from facilitating communication between residents and their families to providing counseling.

Our Facility: We have an in-house team of social workers ready to provide support and assistance to our residents and their families. They can help you navigate through any emotional or social challenges you may encounter. You can schedule a meeting with them via our main office at (626)442-8410

Why Wait?

Start your journey towards a worry-free, engaging, and supportive living environment. Contact Santa Anita today and learn how the Assisted Living Waiver program can make this possible!