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According to state law, Massachusetts defines an assisted living residence as an entity operating either for profit or non-profit, with the purpose of providing room, board, personal care services, and assistance with daily living activities via a contractual agreement to a population of three or more adults who are not related to the management by blood or marriage. Although some states may use the terms 'assisted living' and 'personal care homes' interchangeably, the state of Massachusetts outlines these care types with regulatory definitions.
There are currently 216 assisted living communities operating in Massachusetts.
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The average cost of assisted living in Massachusetts is $5,300 per month. Compared to the nation, Massachusetts ranks 3rd as the most expensive state for long-term care, only following behind Alaska and Connecticut. Within the state, average costs for assisted living varies between areas; however, median costs for metropolis areas soar above the state average.
For more information about assisted living costs in Massachusetts, check out Genworth’s 2015 Cost of Care Survey.
As one of epicenters of America’s birth, Massachusetts is busting with history and institutions to teach generations about the United States’ evolution into one of the most powerful countries in the modern world. Beginning with the pre-revolutionary town of Salem, the Salem Smuggler’s Tour takes visitors to the hidden underground tunnels, which were constructed by the founding fathers for the Federalist Party, connecting businesses, homes and other buildings within the town. Another piece of living history, the Freedom Trail is a 2.5-mile tour of the American Revolution as told by 16 nationally historical sites and museums.
For those looking to tour modern Massachusetts, the Boston Duck Tours give a unique tour experience via a special military vehicle designed to transition from land travel to water travel seamlessly. Inside of Boston, one will find the notable Faneuil Hall Marketplace. This famous Boston marketplace offers over 100 national retailers and restaurants along with amazing architecture unique to Boston.
For those partial to art and culture, Massachusetts offers the Worcester Art Museum displaying an internationally recognized collection of over 35,000 pieces including iconic artists like Claude Monet. Massachusetts’ historical and urban gems are only matched by the beautiful Massachusetts wilderness and wildlife. Captain John Whale Watching and Deep Sea Fishing offers excursions in whale watching which takes visitors up close and personal with whales as large as 40 feet long.
For the fishermen, Captain John Whale Watching and Deep Sea Fishing also offer exciting deep sea fishing excursions. With 34 islands floating around Boston, the Boston Harbor Islands National Park Area offers 34 islands to experience an array of outdoor activities such as camping, swimming, kayaking, picnicking, bird watching, and of course historic walking trails. With a deep history of brewing, Massachusetts offers the New England Brewery Tours for all beer connoisseurs.
Massachusetts played a major role is shaping America and keeping it free. The residents of this New England state are proud of that history. The people here are rather religious, with a large population identifying as Christian. Folks from Massachusetts are generally wise and friendly.
Neighboring the Atlantic Ocean, the New England state experiences distinct and drastic seasonal changes. Although the coastline moderates weather changes, winter brings average temperatures hovering around freezing for the majority of the season providing the perfect climate for heavy snowfall.
Depending on the area, Massachusetts can accumulate between 40-60 inches of snow annually. Summer in Massachusetts brings typical summer weather with temperatures climbing into the 80 degree Fahrenheit range and occasionally into the 90 degree Fahrenheit range. With high temperatures, summer brings rain to the coastal state, averaging 40 inches of precipitation a year.
Assisted living communities are regulated by a state-to-state basis. Every state has a publicly accessible legal document outlining the regulations, licensing, operation and other rules for assisted living. The Department of Health and Mental Hygiene is responsible for the regulation of assisted living programs within the state of Massachusetts. The complete document outlining the regulations for senior care as published by the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene can be viewed and obtained online.
Public records concerning violations, inspections, citations and the like fall under the jurisdiction of the same department for assisted living communities and others like personal care homes and residential care homes. To request the retrieval of public documents regarding individual assisted senior care communities, please visit Massachusetts’s consumer guide for long-term care.
When looking for a new place to live, it is always important to consider the safety of the community you are in. Massachusetts has seen their crime rate on the decline and actually has some of the lowest rate ever reported in the state. If you are not sure where to start your search, look at some the safest communities in Massachusetts:
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For those looking for financial assistance for senior care, Massachusetts’ Medicaid (MassHealth) offers the Personal Care Attendant Program to provide personal care services for elderly and disabled residents. The purpose of the program is to prevent individuals from premature nursing home placement, so the program provides cash and council for participants to self-direct care within the assisted living home. Because the program is under the jurisdiction of MassHealth, participants must be enrolled in MassHealth Standard or CommonHealth. For more information and eligibility guidelines for this program, please visit the Personal Care Attendant Program page in the Central Massachusetts Agency on Aging website.
Like most states with expensive assisted living care, Massachusetts created a Medicaid program to elderly, disabled low-income residents with the cost of senior care. Assisted living homes fall under the category of group adult foster care; therefore this program pays for all services performed in an assisted senior living communities approved by the GAFC program with the exception of room and board. Massachusetts will also pay for room and board via the Supplemental Security Income (SSI-G) Assisted Living Benefit. For more information and eligibility guidelines for this program, please visit the Group Adult Foster Care Program page on the official Massachusetts Health and Human Services website.
For those who are not Medicaid eligible, Massachusetts provides the Supportive Senior Housing Initiative Program for low-income elderly residents. The program provides public housing and certain services for free; however, payment from the participant is based on the individual’s level of income. To be eligible for this program, the participant must be currently living in or willing to move to a publically support housing development. For more information and eligibility guidelines for this program, please visit the Supportive Housing initiative Program page on the official website of Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs.
Alternate payment options are available. Families can apply for an assisted living family loan. This provides temporary or long-term financial assistance when paying for assisted senior care. The program allows multiple people to contribute to payment.
While residing in the home, a resident retains constitutional civil rights, rights of privacy, freedom of speech, and freedom of religion. The resident also retains the right to personal possessions, autonomy over personal finances, bodily autonomy, and power of attorney. The resident has a right to be informed of the process to file a complaint of unsatisfactory living situations, abuse, neglect and the like. Please visit the official Massachusetts Assisted Living Consumer Guide created by the Executive Office of Elder Affairs to obtain the complete list of residential rights as guaranteed by the state of Massachusetts. Massachusetts requires all assisted senior living communities to display the official list of resident rights within the home common area for every resident to easily access and reference.
Medical records of residents shall be kept for a minimum of 5 years in the state of Massachusetts under federal and state regulation. All records are to be treated as confidential and kept safely. All long-term residences must have a medical records librarian or designate a trained employee to be responsible for making sure records are properly maintained, completed, and preserved.
Residents in Massachusetts assisted living centers have access to their medical records and can request a copy of all or a portion of their medical records. They can also request a copy of some or all of the information at a cost not to exceed the community standard cost for photocopies.