How to Manage the Costs of Subacute Care

Subacute care is a short-term solution to costly hospital stays, long-term nursing homes, or rehabilitative care. Although subacute care generally costs less than other healthcare options, it can still leave you with a hefty medical bill.  

If you or a loved one requires subacute care, you may wonder how to cover this type of medical service expense. Learn how to manage the costs of subacute care, so you receive proper treatment without hurting your finances.

What is Subacute Care?

Subacute care refers to time-limited medical care for patients experiencing chronic conditions or injuries that require intensive care. Subacute care services provide patients with personalized at-home nursing and rehabilitative care until the condition is stabilized and no longer requires a high level of care. 

Subacute care focuses on improving the patient’s overall wellness and treating acute symptoms of their condition. 

Cost of Subacute Care

Subacute care generally costs less than treatment in a hospital or nursing home. The average hospital stay costs around $13,200 for 3-4 days of care. Although subacute prices vary by state, California reports subacute care costs between $300 and $600 per day

The average cost of nursing home living is between $175 and $1,100 per day, depending on the state and facility. While some nursing homes may cost less than subacute care, the level of attention and care you may receive is not comparable. 

Who Pays for Subacute Care?

In many cases, subacute care is covered by Medicare. As of 2021, subacute treatment is categorized as Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) care. Medicare covers up to 100 days of SNF care. Expenses range from $0 for up to 20 days to $185.50 per day for 21 days to 100 days of care. 

If you or a loved one requires subacute care for more than 100 days, you may incur out-of-pocket expenses. However, you might be eligible for another 100 days of Medicare coverage for subacute care if you are out of care for 60 days and requalify. 

How to Manage Subacute Care Expenses

The best way to manage subacute care expenses for yourself or a loved one is to understand your health insurance benefits. Some private health insurance plans cover subacute care as a Skilled Nursing Facility, much like Medicare. 

It is essential to check with your provider to determine how long you are covered, what copays or deductibles you are responsible for, and which subacute care providers are covered. This allows you to budget appropriately and research other avenues for necessary out-of-pocket payments.  

Research various subacute care providers in your area to compare services and prices. Choose a provider that meets your subacute care needs and provides the essential services for your condition. Also, choose a provider that accommodates a payment plan or is affordable upfront in case your care goes longer than your insurance covers. 

Get the Care You Need 

Subacute care provides you with a more affordable option for managing illnesses and injuries that require intensive care. To ensure you get the care you or your loved one needs, check with your private healthcare provider and public providers like Medicare to determine your coverage options and reduce your out-of-pocket expenses.

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