Ask Rob

Does a Purchase for Myself Count in Spending Down So My Husband Qualifies for Medicaid?
Q: My husband is in the hospital for assessment with eventual placement in a nursing home.  We have $5,180 in checking and no other assets.  I see he can have only $2,000 in assets to qualify for Medicaid.  To get the amount closer to $2,000, can I buy a portable oxygen concentrator for my own health needs? The concentrator costs $2,695.
A:  Yes, you can spend the money as you propose.  However, Medicaid’s asset limit is significantly higher for you, so you can simply transfer the funds into your name and your husband will be eligible for Medicaid.  You might also want to see if Medicare will pay for your oxygen concentrator.