I. What You Should Know About Home Care in Baltimore, MD

One of the nation’s 30 largest cities, Baltimore is home to nearly 600,000 residents, including more than 80,000 senior citizens. This buzzing metropolis has 200 unique neighborhoods and an impressive list of attractions. You can visit the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra for a night of entertainment or catch a Broadway show at the historic Hippodrome Theatre. Sports fans can cheer for the Orioles or Ravens. For a day of outdoor fun, visit the Maryland Zoo, the 1,2000-acre Leakin Park or the Inner Harbor, which has become the crown jewel of the city’s revitalized downtown.

Founded in 1729, Baltimore has an a rich array of historic sites ranging from the Civil War battleship USS Constellation to the Edgar Allan Poe House & Museum and the birthplace of the national anthem at Fort McHenry. Thanks to the city’s proximity to Washington, D.C., Baltimore is home to headquarters for the Social Security Administration and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. Seniors have access to cutting-edge medical care at Johns Hopkins Hospital and the University of Maryland Medical Center. If these features weren’t enough, the area has a moderate cost of living that can help you stretch your retirement dollars further.

II. What You Should Expect to Pay for Home Care in Baltimore, MD

Seniors in Baltimore pay an average of $4,671 per month for home care and $4,957 for home health aides, which is slightly higher than the state and national median. Estimates are based on provider responses submitted through the Genworth Cost of Care Survey, which has been tracking long-term care expenses for 17 years. The study assumes that seniors need 44 hours of weekly care, which breaks down to an hourly rate of $24.50 for homemaker services and $26 for home health aides.

The Cost of Home Care & Home Health Care in Nearby Cities

Monthly home care costs in Baltimore are higher than the state median by a margin of $95, and they exceed the national average by $190. Home health care, which includes skilled nursing, physical therapy and some medical services, costs almost $200 more than the state median and $381 more than the national average. Home health rates are identical in California, Maryland, and slightly higher in Washington, D.C. Although Baltimore is slightly more expensive than most nearby cities, regional rates only vary by a small margin.

The Cost of Home Care Compared to Other Senior Living Options

Home care can be an affordable option depending on how many hours of assistance you need. Home care costs $50-$300 less than assisted living and $7,000 less than skilling nursing. As a client, you have the freedom to customize your service plan and schedule, so you don’t have to pay for full-time care if you only need a few hours of help each week. Adult day programs are another option to consider. They are less than half the cost of full-time in-home care, but they require you to travel to a community center and participate in organized recreational activities.

III. How to Find Home Care in Baltimore, MD

Finding a home care provider for yourself or a loved one can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. Below, we explain the process of how to find a home care provider in 5 simple steps. Use the infographic below to help guide your search for in-home care in Baltimore, MD.

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Remember that there’s not necessarily a right or wrong choice – it comes down to choosing a provider that you feel comfortable with and who’s capable of meeting your specific needs. No matter which provider you choose, you should always have a formal arrangement with your expectations and the payment rate in writing. Doing so will prevent confusion or potential disagreements down the line so that the focus remains on helping the person receiving care.

IV. Home Care Resources for Seniors in Baltimore, MD

Baltimore City Health Department Division of Aging and CARE Services

What You Should Know
The Division of Aging and Care Services is the federally designated Area Agency on Aging for the city of Baltimore. As part of the Maryland Access Point service network, it connects residents with 22 programs designed to promote healthy aging. This agency can help you access in-home care, personal assistance, Medicaid waivers, delivered meals and community-based support. It also engages in outreach and advocacy. Seniors can sign up for healthy aging and fall prevention courses, or download the agency’s comprehensive directory of local resources.

Who Is Eligible?
Free services are available to caregivers, disabled adults and seniors who are aged 60 or older.

How to Get Started
To learn more about any of these programs, call the agency’s helpline at (410) 396-2273.

Baltimore Senior Centers

What You Should Know
Baltimore is home to 14 senior centers and more than 50 congregate meal sites that serve as a lifeline for older adults. These facilities offer social and recreational programming with an emphasis on activities that promote health, wellness and meaningful personal connections. These centers offer low-cost meals, including Kosher options, for $2 or less. You can also sign up for exercise classes, health screenings, vaccinations, crafts and educational workshops. Farmers market vouchers and wellness programs for managing chronic diseases are also available through these facilities.

Who Is Eligible?
Baltimore’s senior centers focus on serving adults who are aged 60 and older.

How to Get Started
You can locate your nearest senior center online or by calling (410) 396-1337.

TaxiCard

What You Should Know
TaxiCard is a government-subsidized transportation program that provides a monthly stipend to qualifying seniors and disabled adults. Funds are provided by the Baltimore City Health Department Division of Aging and CARE Services and the Maryland Department of Transportation. Electronic benefits are preloaded onto a card and can be used to pay for all or a portion of fares with eight participating cab companies. You can load money to your TaxiCard, and the program provides a matching subsidy based on your income. Benefits can be used 24 hours a day, and in most cases, there’s no need to schedule transportation in advance. Residents can simply call a participating cab company or hail a taxi.

Who Is Eligible?
This program serves seniors who are aged 60 or older. Disabled adults who provide a medical statement from a licensed physician may also qualify. Applicants must meet income requirements and have a physical limitation that prevents them from using public transportation. A share of the cost is required.

How to Get Started
If you would like to learn more about this program or if you need help applying, call customer service at (410) 664-1123. Applications can be completed online.

Meals on Wheels of Central Maryland

What You Should Know
If you need help preparing meals or shopping for groceries, you can apply for assistance through Meals on Wheels of Central Maryland. For more than 60 years, this nonprofit has been delivering nutritionally balanced meals to local seniors. It also offers wellness checks, case management and companionship, to ensure that seniors have access to all of the supports that they need to live at home. The program provides hot lunches and cold suppers Monday through Friday as well as frozen meals for nondelivery days. Seniors must sign up for at least two days each week. Meals on Wheels of Central Maryland offers meal deliveries as well as grocery shopping assistance, pet food and social services. The center provides options for special diets, and kosher and Korean entrees are prepared by community partners.

Who Is Eligible?
Delivered meals are available to individuals who are homebound and are unable to prepare their own meals or go grocery shopping. Meals cost $2.57 to $8.09 depending on your income.

How to Get Started
You can apply for Meals on Wheels by calling (410) 558-0827 or completing the online application. Financial information is required since services are provided on a sliding scale.

Baltimore City Home Repairs

What You Should Know
The Baltimore City Department of Housing & Community Development offers several Rehabilitation and Repair programs for seniors, veterans and disabled adults. If you’re aged 62 or older, you may qualify for a grant or low-cost loan to help with the cost of critical home repairs. Accessible Homes for Seniors funds home modifications, such as installing ramps, grab bars and railings. The Emergency Roof Repair Program offers forgivable loans to area residents who are aged or disabled. Funding is available for home modifications, weatherization and repairs related to heating, electrical, plumbing and structural systems. Free and low-cost home repairs are also available through community partners like Community Housing Assistance Inc.

Who Is Eligible?
You may qualify for home repair assistance if you earn $54,950 per year or less and meet program-specific requirements, such as age and disability.

How to Get Started
For help with home repairs or accessibility modifications, call (410) 396-3023, or mail your preapplication to the LIGHT Intake & Assessment Unit.