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December 24, 2018

Veterans Who Want to Age in Place May Need Help, Physically and Financially

Veterans, as they get older may need support more frequently. When people age, they lose muscle mass. It doesn’t matter how often they work out, how much exercise they get, or even if they jog for miles and lift free weights, they will continue to lose strength. It’s part of the natural process of aging and for veterans and others, elder care can be a valuable asset when the time comes.

What kind of support might an aging veteran require?

Everyone is different, but some senior veterans may have difficulty just getting out of bed some mornings. They might not need too much help throughout the day, but those first hours (getting out of bed safely, getting dressed, taking a shower … not necessarily in that order) could be challenging for some.

Having an elder care aide visiting each morning or even just a couple of days a week to start, could provide direct physical assistance that not only makes it easy for the senior to get out of bed, but to keep him safer.

What about for veterans who can’t afford elder care on their own?

For qualifying veterans, especially those considered a wartime veterans, there is a pension called the Aid and Attendance benefit. It is a pension that was initially developed following World War I but has expanded through the years and now provides support to veterans of all ages, whether they were disabled during active duty service or not.

A veteran does not need to be considered completely disabled to qualify for Aid and Attendance benefits, but they need to have a specific and documentable need for elder care support. The VA expects a doctor’s recommendation for these services before they will approve it, in most cases.

Which veterans would qualify?

A veteran who served at least one day of active duty service during a time in which United States was officially engaged in combat is the first stipulation. They must have served at least 90 days active duty, unless they served any time during the Gulf War in which case the minimum time of service is two years.

They also need to meet specific income and asset threshold limits, of which a primary residence and some other assets may not be calculated against the total. The veteran must also have a documentable need for support and assistance at home, as noted previously.

If you or an aging loved one are considering Elder Care Services in Grayslake IL, please contact the caring staff at Big Hearts Home Care today! 

Matthew Calcagno

Matthew is a graduate of Robert Morris College and is a U.S. Navy veteran.Matthew founded Big Hearts Home Care after over a decade at HP. Spending time volunteering at his grandparent’s senior center inspired him to make a bigger difference in the quality of care seniors receive.His grandfather whom turned 100 in 2015 is still a major inspiration to him in seeing that service is provided with a family focused touch.

It is his passion and commitment to providing quality service that has awarded Big Hearts Home Care as Provider of Choice and Employer of Choice in the Chicagoland area. He believes that being an independently owned and operated company allows him the flexibility to manage the business in a way that better serves the clients.


"Helping people is what I was meant to do; it inspires and motivates me," Calcagno said. "I also get to help veterans - assisting them in the VA pension process and providing care for several in the area. This is what I love to do."

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