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How much does help at home or facility care cost?

Some services provided by the Home and Community Care program are subject to a client rate, which may be partially or fully subsidized, depending on your income. The structure of client charges is set by the Province of BC.

During your initial contact with the Home Health / Community Services office, you will be advised of the anticipated costs, dependent on the services you need. A financial assessment will help determine what client rates are applicable. If unable to afford the fee for services, your financial situation can be assessed to see if you qualify for a temporary reduction in fees. Your case manager will assist in this process.

At the time of the assessment, you will be asked if the need for services is due to an illness or injury for which a third party is liable. It is your responsibility to inform the Home Health case manager of the existence of, or possibility of, a third party liability claim (such as WorkSafe BC, ICBC, Veterans Affairs, First Nations Inuit Health Branch, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, etc).

The following information will provide a basic guideline of the client rate structures.

Information on Client Rates for Services

Professional Services
Services by Home Health professionals, such as home care nurses, case managers, physiotherapists, occupational therapists, social workers and dieticians, are provided at no charge to clients.

Home Support Services
Clients receiving home support services for personal care on a short-term basis, after discharge from a hospital, will not be assessed a fee for the first two weeks.

Clients receiving services on an ongoing basis may have a daily charge, depending on the clients’ annual income. Clients with low incomes often pay only a very small fee, or no fee. Clients deemed palliative by their physician, who are in the last six months of life, do not pay a fee for home support services. Palliative clients may be assessed monthly by the health authority to determine on-going eligibility.

Respite Care
Charges depend on the type of respite care required, such as home care or residential care. For respite services in the home, home support rates will apply.

Short Term Residential Services
Respite, convalescent care or palliative care in a residential care facility will have a daily rate set at the minimum provincial rate (see client rates for residential care below).

Day Programs for Older Adults
Day programs usually charge a nominal daily rate, up to a maximum of $10, to assist with the cost of transportation, meals, and other sundries, such as supplies for crafts.

Residential Care Services
Publicly subsidized residential care services are provided by the health authority. Rates are adjusted every year based on changes to your annual income. Assets are not taken into consideration, unless they produce income. The monthly rate is payable on admission and at the beginning of each month. Your case manager will also advise you of other typical living costs while in residential care, such as personal needs (like haircuts, special therapies, personal hygiene and grooming products).

Residential care clients will pay a monthly charge of up to 80 % of their after-tax income, subject to the minimum and maximum rates, as determined by the Ministry of Health Services.

Family Care Homes
The cost for family care homes is the same as for residential care facilities.

Group Homes
Clients in group home settings do not pay a client rate for services, but would be responsible for living costs, such as shelter, food and utilities.

Assisted Living
Clients are assessed by a case manager for eligibility. Assessments include a review of the financial information to determine the cost for assisted living. The cost to clients of assisted living is calculated at 70% of after-tax income, divided by 12 to establish a monthly contribution. Assets are not taken into consideration, unless they produce income.

Individuals receiving pensions through the Ministry of Housing and Social Development (MHSD) pay a pre-determined rate. For more detailed information, please contact a case manager.

Your monthly assisted living payment provides you with rental accommodation, hospitality service and personal care services.

Clients are responsible for the cost of personal items, such as Pharmacare premiums, medications not covered under Fair Pharmacare, personal laundry, hairdressing, dry cleaning, personal toiletries, telephone, cable and internet.

Full details on costs will be provided by the case manager during the assessment visit.

Hospice Palliative Care in your home
Clients deemed palliative by their physician who are in the last six months of life do not pay a fee for home support services, and may be assessed monthly by the health authority to determine on-going eligibility.

Hospice Palliative Care in a residential care facility
Hospice Palliative Care clients coming from the community or hospital, and receiving short-term residential care for hospice palliative care or end-of-life care, will pay the minimum daily rate established for residential care. If unable to afford this fee, application can be made for partial or full waiver of the fee.

More Information