The recently released Genworth Cost of Care Survey for 2018 shows that assisted living communities are outpacing all other options in the rising cost of care.  Nationally, the cost for assisted living is up 3.8% annually per year since 2014, or 67% total increase, with short supply of available rooms and a tight labor market as the underlying reasons.

The report looks at 15 Years of Cost of Care trends, noting “the cost for facility and in-home care services has risen on average from 1.5% – 3.8% per year, that’s an increase of $700 annually for home care and up to $2,500 annually for a private room in a nursing home.”

California, with its quickly increasing minimum wage, higher litigation rates and increased requirements for sick time pay and training is seeing costs rising faster than the nationwide average.  It ranks as the second most expensive state in the nation for in home care, with a median cost of $59,488, behind only North Dakota at $61,776.  The lease expensive state for in home care is Louisiana, with a median cost of $36,608 annually.

In 2018, California’s median hourly cost was $26/hourly.  San Diego and Los Angeles counties were slightly below that at $25, with San Francisco at $29.50 and San Jose at $30 hourly.

Ways to Cut Costs

As the hourly rate will continue to rise with a labor shortage and increased state regulations, At Home Nursing Care is actively working with clients to reduce the cost of care in innovative ways.  For 24 hour care, we’ve devised a break system where the caregiver clocks out for 3 hours per day, saving the client roughly $75 daily.  The caveat is the caregiver must be completely relieved of duty and able to leave the home, so this is a cost-benefit analysis depending on the independence level of the client.  Our current 24 hour rates start at $17.00 hourly ($17.50 in LA), or roughly $544 daily.  With a three hour break, the cost drops to $488 daily.

The caregiver can also clock out when a family member comes to visit, or when the client has pre-planned events.  

For 2019, our hourly rates are $26 for 8 to 12 hour shifts, including overtime.  In Los Angeles, it’s $26.50 to $27.00, also including overtime up to 12 hours.

We also have a visit rate of $52 for up to one hour, when a client needs help with bathing or extra help around the home.  We only require flexibility for staffing as every client requests the first visit in the morning, so we have to vary the times of the visit each week.

Link to Full Report by Genworth: