What is ALTCS?

ALTCS is the State of Arizona’s Medicaid program that provides long term care services, at little or no cost, to financially and medically eligible Arizona residents who are aged, blind, disabled, or have a developmental disability.

This information sheet provides general information about the ALTCS application process and includes basic program requirements about residency, age, disability, and citizenship status, as well as general guidelines for financial eligibility which includes resources and income.  You must also meet medical eligibility requirements. This is a guide only. Additional information sheets about Community Spouse rules (that apply when you are legally married), trusts and transfers are available upon request.  For more specific questions, contact an ALTCS office.

How do I apply for ALTCS?

•   To apply, you need to complete an application.

•   To start an application, call your local ALTCS office.

•   Another person can act on your behalf during the application process.

• You will need to provide documents to show that you meet financial and non-financial eligibility requirements.

•   You must be determined as needing a nursing home level of care.

What are the NonFinancial Eligibility Requirements?

To be eligible for ALTCS, you must:

•   Be determined in need of a nursing home level of care as determined by AHCCCS;

•   Be a citizen or qualified immigrant;

•   Have a Social Security Number (SSN) or apply for one;

•   Be an Arizona resident;

•   Apply for all cash benefits that you may be entitled to, such as Pensions or VA benefits;

• Live in an approved living arrangement, such as your own home, or an AHCCCS certified nursing facility or assisted living facility.

How are Resources Treated?

For single applicants, countable resources cannot be more than $2,000.  If you are legally married, you may be able to set aside some of your resources for the needs of your spouse, so long as your spouse is not living in a medical facility. If you are married, please ask for a Community Spouse Information Sheet.

Countable Resources Resources That We Do Not Count
• Checking, savings, and credit union accounts

• Real property that you do not live in

• Cash value of some life insurance policies

• Cash, stocks, bonds, certificates of deposits

• Non-exempt vehicles

• Your home that you live in, unless it is held in a trust

• One vehicle

• Burial plots and irrevocable burial plans

• $1500 designated for burial

• Household and personal belongings

If your resources are over $2,000, and you are under the age of 65, you may still be able to qualify by setting up a special type of trust. Please ask for the Special Treatment Trust Information Sheet.

How is my Income Treated?

Income that we count includes, but is not limited to, wages, Social Security, Supplemental Security Income and disability or retirement pensions.

The ALTCS gross monthly income limit is $2,163 (effective 1/1/14) for an individual. If you are married, ask for a Community Spouse Information Sheet.

If your income is over the limit, you may still be able to qualify by setting up a special type of trust.  If you are over income, ask for a Special Treatment Trust Information Sheet.

Will I Have to Pay Any of My Income Toward the Cost of My Care?

Once you have been determined eligible for ALTCS, a calculation will be made to determine if, or how much, you will need to pay towards the cost of your nursing home or home and community based services. This amount is called the Share of Cost. Your monthly gross income will be totaled and then the following deductions may be allowed:

• A personal needs allowance;

• A Community Spouse allowance for the needs of your spouse still living in the home;

• A family allowance for any dependents living in your home;

• A home maintenance allowance if you are in a nursing home but will go home within 6 months;

• Your medical insurance premiums; and

• Medical expenses that ALTCS does not pay for like hearing aids, eye glasses and dental care.

How does ALTCS Determine if I am Medically Eligible?

Once you have been determined financially eligible, a registered nurse or social worker will determine if you are medically eligible in a face-to-face interview. To meet medical requirements, you must be at immediate risk of institutionalization in a nursing facility or intermediate care facility for the mentally retarded (you must require that level of care but you do not necessarily need to reside in a facility).

What are the Different Types of ALTCS Services?

Once you have been determined eligible for ALTCS services, you will be enrolled with a Program Contractor and assigned to a case manager. The case manager will meet with you and your family to develop a service plan. Covered services may include the following:

• Institutional Care in a Nursing Facility;

• Home and Community Based Services, combining out-patient and in-home care;

• Medical Services, such as Doctor’s office visits and prescriptions (prescription coverage is limited for people with Medicare);

• Behavioral health services;

• Preventive and well care for children; and

• Hospice services.

If you have additional questions, contact your Eligibility Specialist in the ALTCS local office.