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Massachusetts is known for its colorful cultural vitality and quality healthcare. The state is home to beaches, mountain towns, and vibrant urban cities. The elderly population has grown rapidly across the state. One out of every four residents of Barnstable, located on Cape Cod, is an older adult. The recent non-profit Money Management program run by volunteers to help seniors with their finances demonstrates the friendly and caring attitudes the elderly receive in Massachusetts.

Directory of Assisted Living Facilities in Massachusetts

Every long-term care facility in Massachusetts has different policies regarding applicants, financial assistance, nursing services, and costs. It’s important to research those aspects as well as the amenities offered by each facility when looking for an assisted living facility for you or your loved one. The directory below lists information on 256 assisted living facilities in the state of Massachusetts.

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How to Pay for Assisted Living in Massachusetts

Determining how to finance assisted living often starts with the question, “What’s the cost?” In today’s economy, where inflation plays a significant role, having current data is crucial for senior living financial planning. has gathered cost information from its expansive network of over 75,000 senior living providers. This data offers a glimpse into the average expenses for assisted living in Massachusetts and 61 additional cities within Massachusetts.

How Inflation Has Impacted the Cost of Assisted Living in Massachusetts

The recent rise in Massachusetts assisted living costs can be attributed to nationwide inflation. The cost of assisted living rose 8% in Massachusetts between 2022 and 2023, from $5,202 to $5,599, compared to 10% nationally. Among neighboring states, only Rhode Island saw lower inflation at 6.5%. During the same period, costs rose by 15% in New York, 16% in Connecticut and 20% in New Hampshire.

Looking to 2024, the trend is expected to continue, with assisted living costs swelling by another 14.5% in Massachusetts and 10% in New Hampshire. Factoring in future projections can inform more realistic senior living budgets.

Location 2022 Cost (Historical) 2023 Cost (Current) 2024 Cost (Estimated)
Massachusetts $5,202 $5,599 $6,393
U.S. Average $4,070 $4,459 $4,802
Connecticut $5,122 $5,919 $6,129
Rhode Island $4,706 $4,997 $5,065
New York $4,091 $4,699 $5,431
New Hampshire $5,191 $6,217 $6,827

Assisted Living Costs in Massachusetts's Top Cities

While the average cost of assisted living stands at $5,599 in Massachusetts, prices fluctuate significantly between cities. Boston is a relatively affordable destination, with costs averaging $5,017. Springfield comes in just below the state average at $5,584, and Worcester is slightly more expensive at $5,950. Away from crowded areas and hugging the coast, assisted living in Plymouth averages $6,940. Such price variations highlight the need to compare different cities when planning senior living arrangements.

The Cost of Other Types of Senior Living

The costs of senior living will depend heavily on the type and level of care required. At $3,506, independent living is suitable for largely autonomous seniors. Memory care costs nearly double at $7,706 and includes tailored programming and caregivers trained in dementia treatment. Assisted living costs $5,599 and promotes independence while providing 24-hour medical supervision and other supportive services. It’s vital to consider needs and preferences when selecting the type of senior care.

Financial Assistance for Assisted Living in Massachusetts

MassHealth, the Medicaid program in Massachusetts offered by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, does not finance assisted living. Most of the assisted living residents in the state pay privately. However, MassHealth has certain programs that finance a part of assisted living services for MassHealth members who have limited resources.

Group Adult Foster Care

MassHealth offers the Group Adult Foster Care program (GAFC) to facilitate long-term care services for seniors who have limited finances. The program is one of the Senior Care Options managed by the state’s Executive Office of Elder Affairs. The Group Adult Foster Care program reimburses GAFC-certified assisted living facilities for personal care services provided to MassHealth residents.

Group Adult Foster Care pays only for the personal care services a resident receives at an approved assisted living residence. The housing cost like the apartment, room, or board rent must be paid by the resident. Not all assisted living facilities are certified by the Group Adult Foster Care programs nor do all assisted living facilities accept MassHealth payments.

Who Is Eligible

Applicants for the Group Adult Foster Care program must be 65 years or older and must be residents of Massachusetts. The maximum monthly income for a single applicant is $1,012 with countable assets up to $2,000. The maximum monthly income for a joint application by a married couple should be $1,372 or countable assets up to $3,000.

Applicants eligible for this program must require help with medication management, administration, and at least one activity of daily living. Individuals who are intellectually disabled, are diagnosed with chronic diseases, or are inpatients of a rehabilitation center do not qualify.

How To Apply

Applicants can fill the Application For Health Coverage for Seniors and People Needing Long-Term-Care Services and mail it to the MassHealth Enrollment Center or fax it to (617) 887-8799.

Supplemental Security Income

In addition to the federal Supplemental Security Income program managed by the Social Security Administration, the Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance provides the State Supplemental Program – a cash benefit program for low-income seniors and disabled individuals. Both supplemental programs offer financial aid commonly referred to as SSI-G for assisted living.

Beneficiaries of the Group Adult Foster Care program who are eligible for the federal and state Supplemental Security Income program usually use the SSI-G to pay for assisted living housing expenses.

Who is Eligible

To qualify for the State Supplemental Program, individuals should be eligible to receive the federal Supplemental Security Income payments, be a part of the Group Adult Foster Care, and live in a state-certified assisted living facility. The monthly income limit is $1,195, and the asset limit is $2,000.

How To Apply

Individuals must first apply for Supplemental Security Income by contacting the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213 or visiting the Social Security Administration website. To apply for the State Supplemental Program, individuals can call the SSP Assistance Line at 1-877-863-1128.

More Ways to Finance Assisted Living

Some additional ways to finance assisted living costs include:

  • Veterans Benefits: Veterans can take advantage of several different pension programs to help cover the cost of assisted living. For more information, see the article on
  • Life Insurance Policies: Even if a spouse or loved one hasn’t died, certain types of life insurance policies can be used to pay for assisted living. More information is available at
  • Long-Term Care Insurance: Long-term care insurance is a type of insurance policy that pays for long-term care when it becomes necessary, including the cost of assisted living. For more information on the benefits and drawbacks of this financing method, visit
  • Reverse Mortgages: Reverse mortgages allow seniors to access the equity from a home that they own, and these funds can be used to pay for assisted living. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development offers a federally insured reverse mortgage program.

Free Assisted Living Resources in Massachusetts

In Massachusetts, a multitude of resources are available to support seniors during their retirement years. has gathered data on various local entities, initiatives, and agencies, and organized them according to the type of care they provide for effortless navigation.

Area Agency on Aging

Your local Area Agency on Aging is a valuable resource for retirees, offering guidance on financial aid, in-home care, and long-term care planning. They also link seniors and caregivers to community resources.

Program Name Phone Number Description
Massachusetts Area Agencies on Aging Massachusetts houses numerous Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) that offer valuable support services to older adults. These agencies aid seniors in accessing local programs that cater to their daily requirements, such as caregiver assistance, transportation services, meal programs, and health and wellness resources. AAAs also play a crucial role in combating elder abuse and fraud, empowering seniors to lead lives filled with safety and dignity.

Food Assistance Programs

In Massachusetts, various local initiatives are dedicated to promoting senior health through balanced nutrition. They offer services like meal delivery, communal dining, and food banks, ensuring elderly residents have access to affordable, nutritious food.

Program Name Phone Number Description
Massachusetts Meals on Wheels Massachusetts Meals on Wheels provides around 30,000 meals daily to seniors in the state. Meals can be delivered to their homes or enjoyed as congregate meals in the community. Over 20 agencies manage local and regional programs. Eligibility is open to seniors who have difficulty preparing meals. Costs are determined on a sliding scale.
Massachusetts Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) 877-382-2363 The Massachusetts Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, managed by the Department of Transitional Assistance, offers monthly funds on an electronic benefits card to support seniors’ food budget. Eligibility requires proof of residency, Social Security number or similar documentation, and proof of income, including veteran’s benefits and Social Security payments. Seniors enrolled in SNAP can also receive cash back on their EBT cards by purchasing local produce through the Healthy Incentives Program.
Massachusetts The Charity Guild Food Pantry 508-583-5280 The Charity Guild Food Pantry in Brockton provides perishable and nonperishable food to seniors, families, and individuals in need. As a part of The Greater Boston Food Bank, the pantry welcomes anyone, regardless of their location. Seniors can visit the pantry on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, as well as every other Saturday. Homebound individuals can also arrange for food parcels to be delivered to their doorstep.

Free Used Medical Equipment

In Massachusetts, numerous groups are addressing the steep expense of new medical equipment. They gather gently used items like wheelchairs, ramps, and walkers, providing them to local seniors and individuals in need.

Program Name Phone Number Description
Easterseals Massachusetts Long-Term Device Loan Program 800-244-2756 Easterseals Massachusetts offers a long-term device loan program for individuals with low incomes who cannot afford medical equipment for home use. This service provides assistive technology, including phones with large tactile buttons, wrist-cuff blood pressure monitors, and screen reading devices.
Massachusetts Compassionate Care ALS 508-444-6775 Compassionate Care ALS is a nonprofit organization dedicated to assisting individuals diagnosed with ALS. Alongside support services, the organization offers a range of new and gently used equipment, such as voice amplifiers, speech communication devices, and wheelchairs, to enhance the quality of life for those affected by ALS.
Massachusetts Hospital Equipment Loan Program 781-322-1052 The Hospital Equipment Loan Program offers free loans of medical equipment for home use. Seniors can request a range of devices, including electric lift chairs, exercise bikes, rollators, and under mattress supports, subject to availability and donations.
Massachusetts REquipment Inc. 800-261-9841 REquipment is a platform that links individuals with reconditioned mobility items, accessibility aids, and assistive technology. Equipment can be reserved conveniently online or via phone. All items are provided at no cost, and delivery or pickup options are available for a small fee.

Health Insurance & Prescription Drug Coverage for Seniors

Seniors in {} with specific income levels can tap into local resources for prescription drug cost assistance. They may also qualify for health insurance and other schemes offering free or discounted medical services.

Program Name Phone Number Description
Massachusetts ConnectorCare ConnectorCare plans are designed to assist individuals whose incomes do not exceed 300% of the federal poverty level. It is important to ensure that a plan meets your medical care and prescription drug requirements, as multiple insurers offer ConnectorCare plans.

Home Repair and Modifications

In Massachusetts, numerous programs are available to aid seniors and individuals with disabilities in financing home modifications and repairs. These programs, offering grants or loans, have diverse eligibility requirements specifically designed for retirees.

Program Name Phone Number Description
Massachusetts Home Modification Loan Program (HMLP) 866-500-5599 The Home Modification Loan Program offers interest-free loans to older residents, enabling them to customize their homes according to their requirements. Repayment is made upon property sale or title deed transfer.
Massachusetts Weatherization Assistance Program The Weatherization Assistance Program aims to enhance energy efficiency and safety in seniors’ homes, resulting in lower utility expenses. By improving insulation and addressing potential hazards, this program helps seniors enjoy comfortable and secure living spaces.

Senior Centers

In Massachusetts, senior centers serve as a hub for older adults, providing recreational activities, events, and valuable resources. These centers also offer wellness programs, nutritional guidance, and assistance with senior-related concerns.

Program Name Phone Number Description
Massachusetts Councils on Aging 413-527-6425 In Massachusetts, 350 Councils on Aging and Senior Centers offer local assistance to seniors, including transportation, meals, outreach, and companionship services. Qualified seniors living at home can access these services, many of which are provided free of charge.

Senior Engagement

In Massachusetts, a variety of programs and resources are available for seniors to stay engaged and active. These include wellness initiatives, volunteering options, and support networks, all aimed at fostering community involvement and enhancing life quality.

Program Name Phone Number Description
Massachusetts North Shore Community College Tuition Waivers 978-762-4000 Massachusetts residents aged 60 and above can enjoy a categorical tuition waiver at local educational institutions. North Shore Community College offers a wide range of in-person and online courses that seniors can take advantage of. Please note that course fees are still applicable.
Massachusetts Worcester State University Categorical Tuition Waiver 508-929-8051 Adults aged 60 and above in Massachusetts can attend public university classes without tuition fees. However, certain classes may not be covered, and additional campus and class fees may apply. To check availability, please reach out to the bursar’s office of the specific college.

Social Security Offices

In Massachusetts, Social Security offices provide essential services to seniors and individuals with disabilities. They offer guidance on retirement benefits, disability allowances, and Supplemental Security Income.

Program Name Phone Number Description
Massachusetts Social Security Social Security provides income for retirees and individuals unable to work due to disability. Funding is derived from payroll taxes paid by employers, employees, and self-employed individuals. Upon retirement, monthly payments are determined by previous earnings.

Tax Assistance

Numerous tax aid resources are available in Massachusetts for senior citizens and individuals with disabilities. These include potential exemptions on medical costs, property tax reductions, and other tax relief initiatives.

Program Name Phone Number Description
Massachusetts Age 65 or Over Exemption 800-392-6089 The exemption amount for a single adult is $700. If both members of a married couple are aged 65 or older before the end of the tax year, they may each be eligible for a $700 exemption.

Utility & Energy Bill Assistance

Organizations are available to aid low-income seniors in {} struggling with home maintenance costs, including utility and energy bills. Emergency funding may also be accessible for those at risk of utility service termination due to unpaid bills.

Program Name Phone Number Description
Massachusetts Fuel Assistance Programs 617-573-1100 Massachusetts Fuel Assistance Programs provide support to seniors in covering home heating expenses during harsh winters. Eligible residents receiving SNAP or other low-income benefits can apply for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) and avail discounted utility rates. LIHEAP applications open on October 1. Seniors may also qualify for emergency funding from the Salvation Army Good Neighbor Fund or Joe-4-Oil.
Massachusetts Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) 617-573-1100 The Massachusetts Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) helps eligible seniors pay for their home heating bills. To qualify, residents must have income equal to or below 60% of the estimated state median income. Applications can be submitted online starting October 1 or in person at local LIHEAP agencies. Required documents include a photo ID, a list of household members, income proof, and a copy of a heating bill.

Veteran’s Services

Veteran services in Massachusetts offer invaluable assistance to retired military personnel. These local entities guide veterans in utilizing their rightful benefits and provide counsel on diverse matters.

Program Name Phone Number Description
Massachusetts VA Benefits and Health Care Massachusetts VA Benefits and Health Care provides medical care and practical assistance for senior veterans, as well as overseeing three national cemeteries. Medical treatment is available at four medical centers in Brockton, Leeds, Jamaica Plain, and West Roxbury, including the Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial Veterans Hospital. Additional medical care is offered at community-based outpatient clinics. Seniors can also access financial assistance and community supports through seven vet centers.

Assisted Living Laws and Regulations in Massachusetts

Assisted Living Service Plans

Assisted living residences are required to create an individualized service plan for each resident before admission. The Executive Office of Elder Affairs states that a Service Coordinator and a nurse are responsible to develop a comprehensive service plan and review it periodically based on a current assessment and screening by the resident’s physician or an authorized medical practitioner. The service coordinator and the nurse should review the service plan within a month of the resident’s admission.

The service plan must include:

  • Services that will be provided to the resident like bathing, dressing, assistance with mobility, medication management, and amenities like beauty services
  • Types of units that will be allotted to the resident
  • A detailed description of the resident’s medical, physical, emotional, and social needs
  • The assessment findings of the medical evaluation
  • The duration of all services provided and the service package

Assisted Living Admission Requirements

The Department of Elder Affairs has specified eligibility criteria for admission of individuals to assisted living facilities.

An assisted living facility is not allowed to admit individuals who:

  • Need skilled nursing care services like injections of insulin or drugs that are to be routinely administered as a part of treatment or therapy unless the facility has a licensed hospice or is a certified provider of Ancillary Health Services
  • Have psychological or psychosocial issues that can pose a risk to the health and safety of the resident or others

Assisted Living Scope of Care

Assisted living facilities offer a home-like, social environment for the elderly. The services include housing, meals, assistance with daily activities, help with medications, and personal care. An assisted living residence is required to provide 24-hour care. The range of assistance a resident will receive is specified in the service plan developed at the time of admission.

An assisted living residence in Massachusetts is allowed to have a Special Care Residence or a Special Care Unit to assist residents with special needs like Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, Huntington’s disease, or other mental issues.

Assisted Living Medicaid Policy

Massachusetts’s Medicaid policy, known as MassHealth, does not completely finance the long-term care an individual receives at an assisted living facility. However, a MassHealth member with less income or assets as defined by MassHealth’s policy can be eligible for certain programs that can support assisted living facilities.

The Group Adult Foster Care and the Supplemental Security Income provided by the state of Massachusetts only finances personal care services for adults who reside at an assisted living facility certified by the Department of Elder Affairs. The programs don’t support housing and other expenses.

Assisted Living Facility Requirements

The Department of Elder Affairs has listed structural requirements that make an assisted living facility eligible for Certification of an Assisted Living Residence. An assisted living residence must provide:

  • Single or double units with lockable doors at the entry of each unit
  • A private bathroom equipped with a lavatory, a toilet, and a bathtub or a shower stall for each unit if the assisted living residence was built after 1995
  • A private half-bathroom equipped with a washstand and a toilet for each unit and one bathing facility for every three residents if the assisted living residence was built before 1995
  • A kitchenette or access to a refrigerator, a sink, and a heating element for all residents unless the access is limited in the resident’s service plan
  • Facilities that comply with the federal and state laws and regulations regarding the sanitary codes, the building and fire safety codes, and disability access

Medication Management Regulations

An assisted living facility must provide assistance and supervision with medications. Massachusetts allows assisted living residences to offer two types of medication management programs:

  • Self-Administered Medication Management (SAMM) lets residents administer medication independently. The staff can only maintain the medication schedule, remind the residents, and assist in opening bottles or containers. The staff is restricted from directly administering medication including applying medicated creams or helping consume medicines.
  • Limited Medication Administration (LMA) allows assisted living facility to provide an advanced level of assistance with medication. According to regulations, a nurse or an individual designated by the resident can assist in the direct administration of medication like creams, eye drops, and medicines.

Staffing Requirements

The Department of Elder Affairs in Massachusetts has made it mandatory for assisted living residences to appoint qualified staff at each staffing level. The facility must have sufficient staff to attend to the needs of all residents at any time.

An assisted living facility should:

  • Have a manager who is at least 21 years old, has a Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience in human services, housing, or nursing home management, and possesses experience in administration, supervision, or management
  • Have a service coordinator who has a Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience, is trained to develop, implement, and maintain individualized service plans, has at least two years of experience working with the elderly or the disabled, and has knowledge about aging and disability issues
  • Have appropriately qualified and trained staff to perform their jobs faultlessly
  • Have experienced and qualified Special Care staff available 24 hours per day to respond to emergencies if the assisted living has a Special Care Unit.

Staff Training Requirements

The Executive Office of Elder Affairs has described a training and an in-service education program that must be conducted at an assisted living residence to inform and guide its staff. The department has provided instructions to assisted living facilities to submit proof of the training programs completed by the staff every year.

Training requirements include:

  • A 7-hour general orientation program should be conducted for staff who will have direct contact with the residents which include the facility’s policies, rights of residents, elder abuse, communication skills, problems of each resident, and emergency responses.
  • The service coordinator and resident manager should receive an additional 2 hours on dementia care.
  • A minimum of 10 hours of ongoing education and training must be conducted annually for all employees including at least 2 hours on Alzheimer’s, dementia, and common cognitive impairments. Residence managers should complete an additional 5 hours of training.
  • Personal care service staff are required to complete an additional 54 hours of training before attending to residents, which include topics like self-administered medication management, mental health, nutrition, mobility, and aging conducted by a registered nurse with a valid Massachusetts license.
  • Special Care staff must complete a 7-hour training program in addition to the general orientation on specialized care and needs of residents including interpreting distress manifestations and creating a therapeutic environment, and an additional 4 hours on medication management and communication skills with residents suffering dementia or other mental issues.

Background Checks for Assisted Living

Every assisted living residence is required to run a complete background check on every potential employee at every level. The Department of Elder Affairs clearly states that any individual convicted of a felony related to illegal handling or theft of a controlled substance, or declared by an administrative court as a violator of any local, state, or federal law related to safety or well-being of a resident of the facility should not be admitted as an employee.

Requirements for Reporting Abuse

The Elder Protective Services investigates cases which involve abuse of an individual aged 60 or over and who lives in a community. Elder abuse includes physical, sexual, or emotional abuse, financial exploitation, neglect by the caretaker, or self-neglect.

Elder abuse reports can be filed 24 hours a day online at or by calling the Massachusetts Elder Abuse Hotline at (800) 922-2275. A case of abuse by assisted living facilities can also be reported to the Assisted Living Ombudsman at (617) 727-7750.

Any suspicion regarding the certification of an assisted living facility or its compliance with the state’s regulations must be reported to the Executive Office of Elder Affairs. The office can be reached at (617) 727-7750 or (800) 243-4636.

Massachusetts COVID-19 Rules for Assisted Living Facilities

Note: The following information was compiled and most recently updated on 2/8/22. Since COVID-19 is a rapidly evolving crisis, be sure to contact your assisted living facility or local Area Agency on Aging for the most up-to-date information.

COVID-19 Rules in Massachusetts
Are loved ones allowed to visit residents in their assisted living community? Yes (Conditions Apply)
Are residents required to quarantine after their loved ones visit? No
Are loved ones required to wear masks when visiting residents? Yes
Are Hairdressers and other non-medical contractors allowed in assisted living communities? Yes
Are visitors screened for elevated temperatures before entering the assisted living community? Yes
Are residents allowed to leave the assisted living community for non-medical reasons? Yes
Are residents who leave required to quarantine when they get back to the assisted living community? Not Available*
Are assisted living communities required to cancel all group outings? No
Are assisted living communities allowed to host group activities within the community? Yes (Conditions Apply)
Are staff members regularly checked for elevated temperatures? Yes
Are staff members regularly tested for COVID-19? Yes (Conditions Apply)
Are residents regularly screened for COVID-19 symptoms? Yes
Are residents regularly checked for elevated temperatures? Yes
Are residents regularly tested for COVID-19? Yes (Conditions Apply)



*Note: This information was not available for this state, contact your local area agency on aging or senior living facility for more information.

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