I. What You Should Know About Home Care in Wichita, KS

Wichita is the largest, most-populous city in Kansas and the seat of Sedgwick County. Known as the Air Capital of the World, it’s the birthplace of many of the world’s best-known airplanes, and over 300,000 aircraft were built in the area. Around 14% of Wichita’s 397,532 residents are seniors aged 65 and older, and plenty of attractions, services and amenities in the city are geared toward older adults.

Although Wichita’s home care costs are higher than other areas in Kansas, the overall cost of living in Wichita is about 18% below the nationwide average. The city also has an average of 221 sunny days each year, 16 more than the U.S. average, making this a great place if you enjoy the city’s 144 parks and 100+ miles of maintained walking trails.

If you prefer indoor activities, you’ll have no trouble filling your days with visits to Wichita’s art galleries, museums and live theaters. There are also over 1,000 unique independent restaurants to enjoy, and the city hosts dozens of annual festivals including the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, the Wichita Jazz Festival and a stunning holiday light show. Although home care doesn’t include health care services, medical care is readily available at Wichita’s Ascension Via Christi St. Francis hospital and Wesley Woodland Hospital and ER.

II. What You Should Expect to Pay for Home Care in Wichita, KS

According to the Genworth 2020 Cost of Care Survey, Wichita seniors pay an average of $4,528 per month for home care services. Home health care rates are slightly higher at $4,671 per month, since this type of care adds some limited skilled nursing services such as medication management and monitoring of chronic health conditions.

Genworth’s costs are based on 44 hours of care weekly, which works out to an average hourly home care rate of $23.75. You can estimate what your monthly home care costs are likely to be by estimating how many hours of support you think you’ll need each month and multiplying this number by the average hourly rate for Wichita home care services.

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

Home care and home health care rates in Wichita are relatively high compared to the statewide average of $4,147 and $4,195 respectively. In Manhattan, either type of in-home care costs an average of $4,290 per month, while those same services average out at $4,099 in Topeka. Rates for home care and home health care are even lower in Lawrence, where seniors pay an average of $4,004 per month.

The Cost of Home Care Compared to Other Senior Living Options

Wichita’s home care costs are slightly under the area’s average home health care rate of $4,671, while assisted living costs an average of $5,168 per month. Adult day care services are the least-expensive senior care option at $1,788 per month. Around-the-clock residential medical care is the costliest senior care option, and in Wichita, placement in a semiprivate nursing home room costs an average of $6,829 per month.

III. How to Find Home Care in Wichita, KS

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 Wichita, KS.

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 Wichita, KS

Meals on Wheels

What You Should Know
Meals on Wheels is a low-cost home meal delivery service designed to ensure that housebound seniors have access to affordable, nutritionally balanced prepared meals. Available to seniors aged 60 and older who have limited access to congregate meal programs or other nutritional support, Meals on Wheels operates Monday through Friday. Extra heat-and-serve meals are available for those with exceptional needs, as well as seniors who are at a high risk of placement in an institutional setting such as a nursing home.

Trained and screened volunteer drivers deliver each hot noontime meal, and the volunteers take a moment to chat with program participants daily. This informal safety check helps to keep housebound seniors connected with their community and provides a means for elders to reach out for additional support as needed.

Who Is Eligible?
If you’re a housebound senior in Wichita or a full-time family caregiver for a homebound elder, you can apply for Meals on Wheels service on a temporary or long-term basis. You may be asked to make a small donation towards the cost of each meal, but if you can’t pay, you won’t be refused service.

How to Get Started
To learn more about Meals on Wheels in Wichita, call (316) 267-0302.

Catholic Charities Foster Grandparent Program

What You Should Know
Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Wichita operates the Foster Grandparent Program, which brings together seniors and children who have exceptional needs.

Senior volunteers spend time tutoring, mentoring and assisting children in a variety of community settings including schools, day care centers and the two emergency shelters operated by Catholic Charities. In exchange for their service, foster grandparents receive an hourly stipend of $3, transportation assistance and nutritious lunches while on duty. Comprehensive training is included, and volunteers can participate in regular workshops and educational sessions geared towards child life specialists.

Who Is Eligible?
If you’re a Wichita senior who wants to remain active by volunteering with special needs children, you can apply to become a foster grandparent.

How to Get Started
To learn more about the Foster Grandparent Program, call Catholic Charities at (316) 264-8344, ext. 1211.

Senior Services of Wichita — Senior Centers

What You Should Know
Senior Services of Wichita is a nonprofit organization that offers a number of programs to support healthy aging among seniors. The organization operates four senior centers in Wichita, and these centers offer a wide range of social, educational and recreational programs for adults aged 55 and older.

Programming varies between each center and can include Spanish classes, workshops with elder law experts, free tax preparation clinics, preventative health screening services and regular holiday parties.

Who Is Eligible?
Any Wichita senior aged 55 and older is welcome to join the senior centers. Annual memberships cost $55 and include access to all four centers. Many programs are included with the annual membership, although additional fees may apply to special events and some classes.

How to Get Started
For more information, call the downtown senior center at (316) 267-0197, extension 246.

Wichita Transit

What You Should Know
Wichita Transit is the local public transit agency for Wichita. There are over two dozen bus routes serving the city. All buses are wheelchair-accessible, including buses on the Q-Line, a free service that makes visiting downtown Wichita easy and affordable.

In addition to the regular fixed-route bus service, Wichita Transit operates the area’s paratransit service for those who cannot ride the regular buses due to disability. Seniors may be eligible to use the on-demand shared-ride paratransit service if they complete an application form verifying that they need extra support in order to use the public transit system.

Who Is Eligible?
Anyone can use Wichita Transit, while the paratransit service is limited to those with temporary or permanent mobility limitations that make riding regular buses difficult.

How to Get Started
To learn more about Wichita Transit schedules and services, call (316) 265-7221.

Wichita Medical Loan Closet

What You Should Know
The Medical Loan Closet of Wichita provides gently used durable medical equipment to low- and moderate-income individuals who need access to affordable wheelchairs, scooters, bath chairs and other assistive devices.

This volunteer-run organization accepts donated equipment, and thoroughly sanitizes and refurbishes the equipment prior to making items available. Equipment availability changes on a daily basis and may include hospital beds; electric and manual wheelchairs; walkers, crutches and canes; and portable commodes.

Who Is Eligible?
Anyone who needs to borrow items from the medical loan closet is welcome to use the service. Prescriptions are not required, and borrowers are free to keep the equipment for as long as needed. Borrowers are asked to sign a loan agreement and make a small one-time donation to help cover operating costs.

How to Get Started
To borrow or donate durable medical equipment, contact the Medical Loan Closet of Wichita at (316) 779-8989.