What is Medicaid and MassHealth? Medicaid is a federally funded program that is administered by the individual states. In Massachusetts, Medicaid is known as MassHealth. The federal government sets the general rules regarding Medicaid qualification but each state interprets those rules differently. There are several different MassHealth programs. In this article we are going to concentrate on MassHealth that pays for nursing home care and MassHealth that pays for care in the community for seniors. A person cannot automatically enroll in MassHealth. The applicant must meet certain asset and income qualifications then apply for MassHealth. If approved, the applicant then can receive benefits.
Long Term MassHealth
An individual who is living in a skilled nursing facility as a long term care resident can apply for Long Term MassHealth benefits to pay for care. In order to qualify for long term MassHealth, the individual must have less than $2,000 in countable assets. Countable assets are all assets except:
Home (primary residence worth less than $828,000) (in 2015)
Prepaid funeral (any amount)
Burial account (up to $1,500)
Life insurance with a face value of $1,500 or less
If the applicant is married, MassHealth considers the assets of both spouses. The community spouse is currently allowed to keep all of the first $119,220 in countable assets (in 2015). This amount changes almost every year. If there are excess assets, we work with clients to appropriately spend down within the rules. Many times, this includes placing substantial excess assets into a MassHealth-compliant annuity for the spouse at home, allowing her to keep all of those excess funds. Many considerations come into play, such as choosing which assets to annuitize in order to minimize any tax or penalties, timing the strategy to preserve the most assets and insuring that the annuity complies with the complex Medicaid regulations. If done properly, under current rules, the spouse at home is allowed to keep all of her own income. Therefore, if excess assets are properly transformed under the regulations into an income stream, they return to the at-home spouse, above and beyond the $119,220!
Income is generally not an issue because the private pay rate at a nursing home in Massachusetts (approximately $9000 in 2011) is usually much greater than the applicant’s income. Once approved, the applicant must pay to the nursing home each month an amount known as the “patient paid amount" or "PPA”. The PPA is equal to the applicant’s gross income less:
Tucked in Fairhaven you will find a great consignment shop of furniture and household items at "What a Find!" Located at the old Modern Galleries building on Route 6, you can find excellent quality furniture. You almost forget that it is a consignment shop. At "What A Find!", the owners only accept quality, gently used furnishings that are from smoke and pet free homes. Furniture must be in very good/excellent condition, clean and ready to be put in their showroom floor. They will not accept any items that are in need of repair, reupholstering or refinishing. I have been able to find amazing sculptures for the garden, one of a kind chairs, some milk glass pieces for my collection and an original watercolor print from a local artist depicting a grand home on County Street in New Bedford.
In addition to furniture and home decor, "What a Find!" sells a very special line of jewelry called Amy's "Heart of Love", in honor and in memory of the owners' daughter, Amy Lynn, who passed from leukemia in 1999. All proceeds are donated to The Tomorrow Fund of Hasbro Children's Hospital, Providence, RI.
You can visit them in person at 154 Huttleston Avenue/Route 6 in Fairhaven. They can be reached by phone at (508) 997-0166. You can visit them on the web by clicking here or follow them on Facebook by clicking here!
Their hours of operation are:
The Lloyd Center’s 82-acres of estuary and maritime forest in South Dartmouth was donated to the Dartmouth Natural Resources Trust (DNRT) in 1978. Originally a residence, the main building is a four-story modern structure which overlooks Buzzards Bay and the Slocum River estuary. Because of its unparalleled beauty, the Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs has identified the Lloyd Center’s property as one of the state’s 15 “Special Places.”
The Lloyd Center was officially opened to the public in 1981 when it began offering its popular natural science programs and workshops to students, teachers and the community. The mission of the Lloyd Center is to instill a life-long respect and affection for nature in citizens of all ages through research and education; to advance a scientific and public understanding of our coastal ecosystems and the need to protect them; and to promote a legacy of natural diversity largely in, but not restricted to, the coastal environments of southeastern New England.
Visitor Center Hours
10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Closed: 4th of July, Thanksgiving, the Friday after Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas & New Year’s Days.
The Center’s trails are open and free to the public, dawn to dusk, 365 days/year. To learn more, click here!
I admit that I am an HGTV junkie. I can watch it all day, especially if a Nicole Curtis: Rehab Addict marathon is on. What I love most is how she is able to restore a home to its' former glory. Of course, she gets a lot of help from buying at reclamation centers. We are very fortunate to have in New Bedford a reclamation center of our own: New England Demolition and Salvage located on 73 Cove Street in the city's South End (at the old Berkshire Hathaway Building). If you have never been there, you will be in for a treat. Buyer beware: you will want to buy everything so I suggest not bringing your husband! If you are looking for a claw foot tub or a cast iron radiator, then this is the place! I never knew I needed glass door knobs or stained glass windows until I came to this place. It's a great way to connect your home to the past! You can visit them on the web by clicking here. Their business hours are Thursday- Monday 9am-5pm or you can call them at 508-992-1099.
2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, chopped into 1 inch pieces
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp.black pepper
1/4 tsp. dried thyme
2 tsp. paprika
2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. turmeric
1/2 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
Prepare the chicken and place in a large resealable plastic bag.
Combine the remaining ingredients in a small mixing bowl and stir to combine. Pour the marinade over the chicken and toss to thoroughly coat. Place the plastic bag in the refrigerator and allow to marinate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
Heat the grill. Skewer the chicken on soaked bamboo skewers and grill for about 15 minutes or until cooked through, turning once or twice while grilling.
Remove chicken from the skewers and serve with hummus (optional).
Destination New Bedford is an organization dedicated to anything and everything about New Bedford. It is great resource for visitors to our fair city... and to the residents who don't always appreciate what is in their own backyard. New Bedford is a city with a vibrant working waterfront, beaches and boating, art and culture, feast and festivals, parks and playgrounds, and home to the New Bedford Whaling National Historical Park...and so much more! To learn more about what makes New Bedford so special, click here to find out more! Also, be sure to check out their Facebook page by clicking here!