I. What You Should Know About Home Care in Providence, RI

Providence is a smart choice if you’re looking for a culturally diverse retirement destination with an artistic bent. Although seniors represent less than 11% of the city’s 179,883 residents, older adults in Rhode Island’s most populous city benefit from a wealth of amenities and social services that can help them age in place. In fact, Kiplinger named Providence one of New England’s six best retirement destinations.

Thanks to the city’s coastal location, you’ll enjoy a fairly mild climate with above-average precipitation. Summers are pleasant with highs in the mid-80s, and winters are chilly with lows around 20 degrees. Although the local cost of living is 5% higher than the national average, Providence is slightly more affordable than other parts of the state and you’ll save up to 15% on health care. Plus, Rhode Island’s principal city has several top-rated medical facilities, including the Miriam Hospital and the Rhode Island Hospital.

As a Providence resident, you have access to plenty of indoor and outdoor attractions, and the city is also known for its world-class performing arts venues. These features help make Providence a highly livable city for seniors who enjoy art and culture.

II. What You Should Expect to Pay for Home Care in Providence, RI

According to Genworth Financial’s 2020 Cost of Care Survey, you can expect to pay $5,529 per month for nonmedical in-home assistance and approximately $5,815 per month for in-home medical care in Providence. This study assumes that seniors require 44 hours of weekly care, which breaks down to average rates of $29-$30.50 per hour. Local prices are approximately $5 higher than the national averages of $23.50-$24. Since services are billed by the hour, you have greater control over your costs, and you can schedule as much or as little assistance as you need, which provides more flexibility.

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

Home care prices in Providence are slightly higher than the national average, but they’re similar to the state median. In Boston, Massachusetts, home care prices are comparable at an average of $5,720 for medical or nonmedical services. If you relocate to Barnstable, Massachusetts, prices increase by $300-$500 per month with an average of $6,002 for homemaker services and $6,101 for home health care. In contrast, you can save up to $1,000 per month in Hartford, Connecticut, where home care prices are closer to the national average.

The Cost of Home Care Compared to Other Senior Living Options

Home care is a viable option whether you’re independent or require skilled nursing services. However, there are alternatives. Daytime programs cost just $1,636 per month. They include meals and structured activities that provide a social outlet for older adults. In-home care costs about three times as much at a monthly average of $5,529-$5,815. With assisted living, you can expect to pay $4,950 per month for room, board and 24-hour personal assistance. Skilled nursing facilities provide the highest level of care, so they cost about 75% more than home care at an average of $9,733 per month.

III. How to Find Home Care in Providence, RI

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 Providence, RI.

An infographic giving steps to finding a home care provider

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 Providence, RI

Rhode Island Office of Healthy Aging

What You Should Know
The Rhode Island Office of Healthy Aging empowers seniors to lead healthy, active lifestyles while maintaining their independence. It provides a comprehensive overview of public and privately funded programs that can help you age in place, and it offers referrals and application assistance for transportation, nutritional benefits, legal services, long-term care, housing and in-home assistance. If you have questions about your Medicare coverage, including benefits for home health care and community-based supports, the agency can connect you to a Medicare counselor or fraud prevention expert. You can also contact the Office of Healthy Agency for help with questions or concerns about abuse, neglect and financial exploitation.

Who Is Eligible?
Programs funded by the Rhode Island Office of Healthy Aging support seniors aged 55 and older. Family members, disabled adults and informal caregivers also qualify for a number of free services. If you’re requesting financial assistance or in-home care, you must meet income requirements and complete a comprehensive needs assessment.

How to Get Started
To learn more about home care and related resources in your area, dial (401) 462-4444 to reach The Point, the state’s 24-hour information and referral helpline. You can also contact the United Way, The Point’s official partner in Providence, at (401) 519-0360.

Providence Department of Senior Services 

What You Should Know
The Department of Senior Services is dedicated to improving seniors’ health and quality of life. It supports a number of congregate dining sites and nine local senior centers that offer recreational activities, daily meals, educational opportunities, wellness screenings and special events. You can contact your local senior center to learn more about social services, such as Medicare insurance counseling, utility bill assistance, long-term care options counseling and senior volunteer or employment opportunities. The department also publishes a resource directory that highlights other state and local agencies.

Who Is Eligible?
The Department of Senior Services serves those aged 60 and older and their caregivers. Community elder information specialists who are employed by the city’s senior centers can also arrange the in-home assessments that are required for some programs.

How to Get Started
You can learn more about these resources by contacting your local senior center or by calling city hall at (401) 680-5000.

Meals on Wheels of Rhode Island

What You Should Know
As the state’s only Meals on Wheels program, this volunteer-driven organization delivers more than 1,200 meals each weekday to residents in Providence and the surrounding communities. It provides an entrée, starch and vegetable plus bread, a beverage and dessert for a suggested $3 donation. You can contact the organization to sign up for pet food deliveries, holiday care packages and vouchers that entitle you to a free meal at a participating restaurant. Meals on Wheels of Rhode Island also offers congregate meals to area seniors through its network of Capital City Cafes.

Who Is Eligible?
Delivered meals are available to residents aged 60 and older who are homebound or have difficulty preparing their own food. Disabled adults who qualify for a long-term care waiver are also eligible.

How to Get Started
You can sign up for meals online or by calling the organization’s main office at (401) 351-6700.

Rhode Island Public Transit Authority

What You Should Know
If you live in the Providence metropolitan area and want to take advantage of public transportation, you may qualify for free or low-cost fares based on your age, income and health. All residents aged 65 and older qualify for half-price fares during off-peak hours. Free rides are available to low-income passengers who qualify for the Reduced Fare Bus Pass Program for Low-Income Seniors and People with Disabilities. Seniors must show a Wave photo ID or Medicare card when boarding. RIPTA also provides door-to-door, ADA-compliant paratransit services to riders who have difficulty using the city’s fixed-route bus lines. Paratransit services and shared van rides must be scheduled in advance.

Who Is Eligible?
Low-cost fares are available to seniors aged 65 and older and other Medicare beneficiaries. Low-income seniors and disabled adults who meet financial requirements can ride for free. You must meet medical eligibility requirements to qualify for RIPTA’s paratransit service.

How to Get Started
You can find additional information about these programs by calling RIPTA’s administrative office at (401) 461-9760. For details about free and low-cost rides for seniors, call (401) 784-9500, ext. 2012.

Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence Elder Services 

What You Should Know
The Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence provides a number of social services in partnership with the Rhode Island Division of Elderly Affairs. You can contact its information and referral line for information about community-based services that are available in your area. It manages senior companion programs, and its friendly visitors have been providing social engagement opportunities to local seniors since 1978. You can also contact Elder Services to learn more about Medicare benefits, prescription drug assistance and comprehensive training programs for family caregivers.

Who Is Eligible?
Informational assistance and volunteer services, such as senior companionship and friendly home visits, are available to disabled adults and seniors aged 60 and older. Income limits may apply for some programs, such as respite care available through CareBreaks.

How to Get Started
For more details about Elder Services, call Catholic Social Services of Rhode Island at (401) 421-7833. You can also find program brochures and applications online.