Resources in the State of Rhode Island
You or a loved one has spent time, energy, money and many well lived years in a Rhode Island home and should continue doing - opting out of costly alternatives that only compound to the high cost of living in the state.
- Why aging in place is an affordable alternative to assisted living
- The variety of financial assistance programs available
- Renter rights and getting approval for modifying the home
- Rhode Island license requirements for the occupational therapists and installers we use
Average cost of care alternatives in RI
Cost of care such as assisted living in Rhode Island ranges in price. According to the Genworth Cost of Care Survey, in 2023 families can expect to pay:
- $6,321 Home Health Aide monthly (or $75,854 annually)
- $1,907 Adult Day Care (or $22,894 annually)
- $7,242 Assisted Living Facility (or $86,904 annually)
- $10,649 Private Nursing Home Room (or $127,785 annually)
Average cost of home modification project in RI
Modifying the home is a very affordable alternative to care such as assisted living. In fact an average home modification project through Jukebox Health in the state of Rhode Island, costs $1,800. Depending on one’s specific needs and home this amount can often cover the cost of purchasing and professionally installing products such as grab bars, shower chairs, motion sensor lighting and toilet seat risers.
Does Medicare Cover Home Modifications?
Families often ask how Medicare may cover the cost of home modifications. Unfortunately, it is uncommon for Medicare plans (Medicare Advantage or Medicare Supplement) to cover the cost of home modifications.
Most plans are primarily focused on products that they deem as “medically necessary”. This means that items such as grab bars, bathtub seats and stairlifts, although crucial to maintaining safety in the home, are unlikely to be covered. However this doesn’t mean yours or a loved one’s Medicare plan will always deny coverage. Because each case is unique we encourage you to reach out directly to the plan to understand the specifics of what they are willing to cover.
And if Medicare is unwilling to cover the cost of home modifications and you would like to explore alternative funding, a Jukebox Health Client Care Coordinator is more than happy to work with you to find options you or a loved one may be eligible for.
Does Medicaid Cover Home Modifications?
Most states offer Medicaid programs that cover home modifications to assist older adults or disabled individuals to remain living at home. Residents of Rhode Island may be eligible for the “Rhode Island Global Consumer Choice Compact Waiver”.
A variety of home safety benefits and services are available under this waiver, including homemaker services, meal delivery and home modifications. To learn more about this program please visit http://www.ohhs.ri.gov/medicaid/
Money Follows The Person Program
Lastly, some states such as Rhode Island, offer a “Money Follows The Person” Program. This is a Medicaid program intended for people that are living in a nursing home, but wish to return home. This program supports any home modifications that will help the individual safely return and remain at home.
Learn more about eligibility here.
You can also contact them by email at email@example.com or by calling 401- 462-6393.
Condition Specific Programs To Fund Home Modifications
Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Foundation
For those living with Multiple Sclerosis, they may be able to apply to the Assistive Technology (AT) Program through the MS Foundation. This program, where income is not a disqualifier, is designed to partially fund or provide full funding for home modifications. Products that may receive coverage include:
- Communication devices
- Environmental control systems
- Home and vehicle modifications
- Seating, positioning, and mobility devices
- Aids for vision and hearing
The American Parkinson Disease Association
If you or a loved one has Parkinson’s we recommend reaching out to your local chapter to inquire about a variety of education and support - including grants to fund home modifications. Application periods vary.
You can learn more about the Rhode Island chapter here and if you have questions about the grants application process, please email Programs@Parkinson.org
Across the country families can find a local ALS Association chapter that offers a variety of resources and support for those living with ALS. For New Hampshire residents we encourage you to connect with the Rhode Island Chapter.
Currently the Rhode Island Chapter offers a variety of resources and education to help families navigate Parkinson’s at home. If you have any questions about the Rhode Island Chapter, visit their contact page.
Funding Home Modifications for Veterans
Veteran Association Programs
There are three main grant programs Veterans may be eligible for through the Veteran Association.
Learn more about eligibility here.
The Gary Sinise Foundation’s Restoring Independence Supporting Empowerment (RISE)
This program provides grants for veterans who are in need of modifying their home to support safe, comfortable and independent living. In addition some injured or aging veterans can be eligible to receive funding for mobility devices and adapted vehicles.
Learn more about eligibility here.
Renter Rights in RI
Under the Fair Housing Act, landlords are required to make reasonable accommodations for tenants who need additional safety support at home. Unfortunately, renters are often unaware of their rights and it’s not uncommon for landlords to take advantage of this. We suggest you talk with Jukebox Health’s Client Care Team to learn more about your rights as a renter, especially if you will be needing more intensive modifications such as a door widening or ramp installation.
If you need any home modifications, there are a few steps that you can take to make sure you’re able to order and install products
Review the Fair Housing Act
Be sure to review Section 504 that provides you a clear understanding of what rights you have to make modifications within your living environment.
Know Your Pricing Options
Unfortunately renters typically bear the cost of modifications. Although the Fair Housing Act does require your landlord to allow reasonable accommodations, in most situations they are not obligated to pay your changes. If this is the case for you, we recommend you talk with a Jukebox Health Client Care Coordinator. We are more than happy to explore other financing options with you.
Explore Rent Approved Products
If you would like to start with simpler modifications that do not require landlord approval we suggest exploring products within our catalog that are affordable and do not need any major installation. You can find more information here.
Work with Jukebox Health
It’s important you work with a home safety expert to understand the home modifications available to renters. Please call us at (212) 321-5113 so we can discuss and provide advice on the best plan of action.
Requirements for Licensed Occupational Therapists and Installers in The State of RI
All 50 states require that occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants be licensed. Receiving a license grants a therapist the ability to practice in the state in which they are licensed.
In Rhode Island occupational therapists must:
- Earn a Bachelor or Master’s degree in Occupational Therapy from an American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) or the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) certified school
- Perform at least 6 months of occupational therapy work experience as part of an internship under a licensed Occupational Therapist.
- Pass a criminal background check.
- Pass the NBCOT OTR examination.
- Complete 36 Continuing Competency contact hours for each three year renewal period for licensure.
Jukebox Health follows Rhode Island requirements for all occupational therapists that work with our clients. In addition, many occupational therapists in our network have special certifications such as:
- CAPS Certification through the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)
- CLIPP Certification through the Living In Place Institute (LPI)
- Executive Certificate in Home Modifications through USC Leonard Davis (USC)
These are some of the top certification programs in the country for occupational therapists to specialize in fall prevention and safety at home.