Assisted living and SNF costs are up, home care costs stay flat, study reports

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Average charges for living in long-term care facilities, including nursing homes and assisted living facilities, increased by healthy amounts in 2011, while in-home care costs stayed relatively the same, according to a new survey.

Genworth Financial, a long-term care insurance provider, conducted the survey. According to the Genworth report, the cost for a semi-private nursing home room rose 5.7% from 2010 to 2011. That current daily rate is $193. The cost of an assisted living facility rose 2.4%, for a median monthly rate of $3,261.  The cost of home-based care during this period remained flat. The cost of a licensed home health aide service stayed the same, at a national median rate of $19 per hour, as did adult day health care, which has a median daily rate of $60, the survey reports.

According to the report, home care charges for non-skilled services have been kept in check because of increased competition among agencies and the availability of unskilled labor. Assisted living and nursing facility rates have gone up, the survey found, because of an increase in residents who need a broader range of care as they age.

For this survey, Genworth collected data from nearly 15,500 U.S. providers and offers an interactive tool that consumers can use to compare costs throughout individual states and specific markets.