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Pennsylvania is a senior-friendly state – all retirement income for residents 60 and older is exempt from state taxes, and the sales tax rate of 6% is lower than average. According to the United States Census Bureau, 21.8% of the state’s population is elderly. Many of the elderly in the state live on fixed, limited incomes and need assistance in paying for and locating affordable assisted living facilities.

Directory of Assisted Living Facilities in Pennsylvania

When starting the search to find a quality assisted living facility for yourself or an elderly loved one, it’s important to compare each facilities amenities, the type of care services they offer, and what financial assistance is available to help pay for the services you or your loved one. The directory below gives details and in-depth information on over 150 facilities in the state of Pennsylvania.

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How to Pay for Assisted Living in Pennsylvania

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 Pennsylvania and 101 additional cities within Pennsylvania.

How Inflation Has Impacted the Cost of Assisted Living in Pennsylvania

Inflation spurred a significant spike in senior living costs between 2022 and 2023. In Pennsylvania, the cost of assisted living jumped 19%, nearly double the national average increase of 10.5%. Assisted living costs in neighboring states varied. While costs in New York jumped 15% from 2022 to 2023, costs in New Jersey fell from $5,857 in 2022 to $5,175 in 2023.

Projections show that assisted living costs may continue to increase in 2024. In Pennsylvania, these costs are expected to jump to $5,016, while the average national costs could rise to $4,802.

Location 2022 Cost (Historical) 2023 Cost (Current) 2024 Cost (Estimated)
Pennsylvania $3,908 $4,653 $5,016
U.S. Average $4,070 $4,459 $4,802
New Jersey $5,857 $5,175 $5,992
Maryland $4,613 $5,091 $5,153
Ohio $4,110 $4,478 $5,268
New York $4,091 $4,699 $5,431

Assisted Living Costs in Pennsylvania's Top Cities

Assisted living costs vary across the state. For instance, costs in the eastern city of Philadelphia are $5,346 per month, while costs in Pittsburgh, on the other side of the state, are $367 less per month. Costs in both cities are higher than the state average of $4,653. Assisted living costs in Erie and Harrisburg show only a $70 difference, with monthly costs of $4,891 and $4,821, respectively.

The Cost of Other Types of Senior Living

Various factors determine the cost of senior living, including the types of services provided and the level of care required. In Pennsylvania, independent living is the most affordable senior living option, with an average monthly cost of $3,215. Those requiring more supportive care may prefer assisted living care, which averages $4,653 per month in Pennsylvania. Due to the specialized services required, memory care is the most expensive senior care option, with a monthly average cost of $5,201.

Financial Assistance for Assisted Living in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania Aging Waiver Program

The Aging Waiver is the division of the Pennsylvania Department of Aging that services frail elderly who are eligible to receive nursing home care but prefer to live and receive care in their home or communities. There are no caps, but some counties may have a waiting list.

Assisted living residents interested in the Aging Waiver must complete an in-person assessment to determine eligibility. If eligible, the resident, along with his or her representatives, will create a care plan with an Area Agency on Aging manager. It’s important that the care plan includes all the services the resident will need, as well as how often he or she will need them. If the services needed are not included in the care plan, they won’t be covered by the Aging Waiver.

Who Is Eligible?

Applicants need to qualify for Pennsylvania’s Medicaid and meet certain income, asset limits and functionality requirements. If you’re 60 or older and will be the only one in your home, the qualifications for Medicaid include:

  • Must meet the level of care needs for a Nursing Facility
  • Be a legal U.S. resident who lives in Pennsylvania
  • Annual income must not exceed $2,250 (in 2018), and your assets must be $8,000 or less

How to Apply

To get more details about eligibility requirements and start an application, contact your local Area Agency on Aging office. You can also call (918) 933-4900 or (800) 435-4711.

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 Pennsylvania

In Pennsylvania, 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
Pennsylvania Area Agencies on Aging The Pennsylvania Department of Aging oversees the operations of Area Agencies on Aging throughout the state. These agencies provide a range of services to seniors, including legal assistance, Medicare counseling, and prescription assistance. They also offer information on financial exploitation, protective services, and the long-term care ombudsman program. Seniors can also receive support with housing and meals. The agency also runs the Senior Community Service Employment Program, which is available to eligible Pennsylvanians aged 55 and above.

Cash Assistance Programs

In Pennsylvania, financial aid programs are available to support low-income seniors in maintaining their home-based living. These programs offer tax relief, essential service discounts, and assistance with home heating and cooling expenses.

Program Name Phone Number Description
Pennsylvania Lifeline Program 800-234-9473 The LifeLine Program provides discounted telephone service, allowing participants to maintain communication with their loved ones via landline or mobile phones.

Financial Assistance for Senior Care and Senior Living

Seniors in Pennsylvania, whether residing independently or in a senior living facility, have access to various local financial aid options. These entities assist in offsetting certain in-home or long-term care expenses and link them to beneficial community resources.

Program Name Phone Number Description
Pennsylvania Living Independence For the Elderly (LIFE) LIFE (Living Independence for the Elderly) is a care program in Pennsylvania that provides a comprehensive range of medical and supportive services to seniors aged 55 and above. These services include dental care, audiology, in-home assistance, and medical transportation. To qualify for LIFE, seniors must reside in an area served by a LIFE provider and meet the required level of care typically provided in a nursing home.
Pennsylvania Nursing Home Transition Program 800-753-8827 The Nursing Home Transition waiver is intended for Medical Assistance recipients residing in nursing homes who wish to return to their homes and communities.

Food Assistance Programs

In Pennsylvania, 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
Pennsylvania Senior Meals 717-783-1550 The Senior Meals program by the Pennsylvania Department of Aging offers free congregate noontime lunches at 500+ senior centers. Homebound seniors can also receive meal deliveries. Eligibility requires individuals to be 60 years or older, or married to someone who meets the age requirement. Donations are accepted but not mandatory.
Pennsylvania Meals on Wheels Meals on Wheels offers complimentary home meal deliveries to elderly individuals with the help of community volunteers.
Pennsylvania Senior Food Box Program 800-468-2433 The Pennsylvania Senior Food Box Program offers additional shelf-stable food to eligible individuals aged 60 or above, improving their nutrition and diet. Boxes may include pantry essentials like pasta, peanut butter, canned fish, and dry beans. To qualify, Pennsylvanians must meet specific income criteria. Approved applicants can receive the boxes through their local food bank.

Free Used Medical Equipment

In Pennsylvania, 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
Pennsylvania Assistive Technology Foundation (PATF) 484-674-0506 This nonprofit organization assists seniors in accessing essential assistive technology. It offers information on various financial assistance options, including private and public grants. Additionally, PATF provides zero-interest loans of up to $7,000 to eligible seniors, which can be used to purchase assistive technologies like hearing aids and vision devices.

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
Pennsylvania Health & Wellness Programs 717-783-1550 The Department of Aging in Pennsylvania provides a wide range of Health & Wellness Programs for older adults. These programs cater to the physical and mental well-being of seniors, offering fitness programs that address nutrition, strength, balance, and fall prevention. Additionally, there are programs available to assist with medication management and coping with chronic illnesses or pain. Seniors can also access mental health programs to prevent depression and make lifestyle changes for overall wellness.
Pennsylvania PACE and PACENET Prescription Assistance Programs 800-225-7223 Prescription Assistance Programs in Pennsylvania provide affordable access to prescription medications for older residents. Qualified seniors can benefit from reduced out-of-pocket costs by paying a small copay for each drug. Additionally, PACENET offers low-cost prescriptions to seniors who exceed the income limits set by the regular PACE program.

Home Repair and Modifications

In Pennsylvania, 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
Pennsylvania Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) The Weatherization Assistance Program in Pennsylvania offers financial assistance to enhance energy efficiency and lower energy expenses. Eligible participants may receive support for minor repairs, insulation for attics or windows, caulking, replacement of heating/cooling systems, and other weatherization services.

In Pennsylvania, numerous agencies provide affordable or complimentary legal assistance to the elderly. They offer counsel on matters like estate management, living wills, and power of attorney. Some even serve as advocates for seniors’ rights in long-term care facilities.

Program Name Phone Number Description
Pennsylvania Health Law Project (PHLP) 800-274-3258 The Pennsylvania Health Law Project aids low-income individuals, including seniors and persons with disabilities, in accessing publicly funded healthcare services and safeguarding their rights. The project provides support on matters concerning managed care, Medicaid eligibility, and access to Medicaid services and long-term services and supports.
Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network 717-236-9486 PLAN provides free legal services to low-income seniors in Pennsylvania. Our services cover a wide range of civil issues, including age discrimination, unlawful evictions, and bankruptcy. We offer legal education and court representation to eligible seniors with an income that’s 125% or lower than the poverty level. Gain access to the assistance you need today.
Pennsylvania SeniorLAW Center Access Services 877-727-7529 The SeniorLAW Center offers assistance to Pennsylvania seniors in need of help with civil law matters. They provide direct representation and information on various issues, including housing problems, senior exploitation or abuse, powers of attorney, wills, advanced medical directives, and consumer concerns. However, they do not handle criminal matters, divorce cases, or lawsuits.
Pennsylvania’s Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program 717-783-8975 LTC ombudsmen serve as advocates for seniors facing issues with long-term care facilities. They investigate abuse and neglect complaints from seniors and caregivers, aiming to find resolutions. Ombudsmen also offer guidance on billing disputes, Medicare, Medicaid, and available resources. Additionally, they educate the community about the rights of seniors in LTC communities.

Senior Centers

In Pennsylvania, 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
Pennsylvania Help at Home (OPTIONS) 717-783-1550 The Pennsylvania Options Program assists seniors aged 60 and above in the state by providing financial aid for their care requirements, including home assistance, Meals on Wheels, and nursing home care. A comprehensive evaluation of the senior’s health and physical capabilities is conducted, followed by an exploration of funding options to cover a portion or all of their care expenses.

Senior Engagement

In Pennsylvania, 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
Dementia Friends Pennsylvania Dementia Friends Pennsylvania, inspired by the UK’s Alzheimer’s Society, aims to raise awareness about Alzheimer’s and create dementia-friendly communities across the state. Their flagship program, led by trained champions, offers a one-hour information session covering five aspects of dementia and providing insights into living with progressive memory loss. Virtual seminars are available online. The organization is sponsored by the Jewish Healthcare Foundation and boasts nearly 5,000 individual members.
Pennsylvania Life Long Learner 877-230-5547 East Stroudsburg University offers a tuition-free program called Life Long Learner, designed to keep seniors mentally sharp and connected to the local community. Since 1981, this initiative has welcomed Pennsylvania residents aged 60+ who are not employed full-time. Participants can enroll in up to six credits per semester (usually two courses) and maintain a non-degree status. It’s a great opportunity for seniors to continue learning and engaging with their community.
Pennsylvania Senior Citizen Policy 610-436-3541 West Chester University, situated just 15 miles from Phoenixville, provides lifelong learning opportunities for seniors. Individuals aged 60 and above can enroll in tuition-free courses, subject to availability. Offered subjects encompass art history, economics, and mathematics. Additional expenses, such as textbooks, may be the responsibility of the seniors.

Social Security Offices

In Pennsylvania, 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
Pennsylvania 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 Pennsylvania 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
Pennsylvania Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program 888-222-9190 The Pennsylvania Department of Revenue provides a property tax abatement program specifically designed for senior homeowners and tenants. Homeowners can receive a maximum rebate ranging from $250 to $650 per year, while renters are eligible for a rebate of $500 to $650. This program aims to alleviate the burden of property taxes for seniors in Pennsylvania.

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
Pennsylvania Heating Assistance/Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) 866-857-7095 LIHEAP provides financial assistance to low-income individuals in Pennsylvania for their energy bills. The program also offers emergency grants to address heating equipment issues, prevent service disconnection, and address hazardous conditions.

Veteran’s Services

Veteran services in Pennsylvania 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
Pennsylvania VA Benefits and Health Care The Pennsylvania VA Benefits and Health Care program provides eligible veterans and their spouses with access to a range of services and benefits. The program operates six senior living facilities that offer personal care, memory care, and skilled nursing services. Additionally, there are several VA medical centers and numerous VA health care clinics available to veterans.

Assisted Living Laws and Regulations in Pennsylvania

Assisted Living Assessments

Documents required prior to admission to an assisted living facility in Pennsylvania include a medical evaluation as well as an initial assessment and support plan. The assessments can be completed 15 days after admission if the resident:

  • Is being admitted directly from an acute care hospital
  • Is escaping an abusive situation
  • Has no alternative living arrangement

Assisted Living Admission Requirements

Unless assisted living facilities have approval from the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services, they cannot accept residents who:

  • Are dependant on a ventilator
  • Have stage 3 and 4 bedsores and vascular ulcers that are not in a healing stage
  • Require continuous IV fluids
  • Have an infectious disease that requires isolation or special precautions
  • Have NG tubes
  • Require physical restraints
  • Need continuous skilled nursing care 24-hours a day

Assisted Living Scope of Care

Assisted living facilities are required to define the scope of services it provides to residents in writing. Assisted living communities in Pennsylvania typically offer the following services:

  • Assistance with instrumental activities of daily living (e.g. preparing meals, housework, laundry, shopping, etc.)
  • Assistance with activities of daily living (e.g. eating, bathing, dressing, toileting, etc.)
  • Personal care
  • Hospice care and services
  • Nutritious meals and snacks
  • Daily social and recreational activities
  • Basic cognitive support
  • 24-hour supervision, monitoring, and emergency response
  • Help with self-administration of medicine or medication administration
  • Skilled nursing
  • Occupational and physical therapy
  • Behavioral health services

Assisted Living Medicaid Policy

Medicaid does not directly cover the cost of assisted living. However, elderly who qualify for nursing home coverage from Medicaid can opt for assisted living and use the Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Aging Waiver. Although the waiver does not cover the cost of room and board, it will cover home and support services.

Assisted Living Facility Requirements

Rules for assisted living facilities in Pennsylvania include:

  • They must provide physical accommodations and safety equipment for residents with a disability.
  • Unless the resident agrees to share their living unit with another resident, he or she must have his or her own unit, and the facility cannot require residents to share a unit.
  • There must be accessible or adaptable doors for wheelchair use.
  • Lockable doors must be provided.
  • Living units and bathrooms must have an emergency notification system unless the resident has an alert device.
  • Safety bars in bathrooms and slip-resistant surfaces must be installed in bathtubs and showers.

Medication Management Regulations

In order for staff to be allowed to give residents their medications, they must be a registered nurse, licensed physician’s assistant, certified registered nurse practitioner, licensed practical nurse, or graduate of an approved nursing program under the supervision of a professional nurse or staff who has completed the medication administration training.

Staffing Requirements

Pennsylvania assisted living facilities are expected to provide enough staff to fulfill services identified in residents’ assessment and support plans. Additionally, a licensed nurse must be available in the facility or on call at all times.

An administrator’s responsibilities in an assisted living facility include administering and managing, providing assisted living services, or if the administrator cannot provide the services, he or she can direct qualified staff to carry out the services and supervise them. The administrator is also responsible for maintaining or supervising the maintenance of financial and other records.

Staff Training Requirements

Before an assisted living facility hires an administrator, the administrator is required to complete the following training:

  • An orientation program approved and administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services
  • A 100-hour standardized Department-approved administrator training course
  • A Department-approved competency-based training test with a passing score

The requirements for working as direct care staff in an assisted living facility are:

  • Must be at least 18 years of age
  • Must have a high school diploma, GED or be a nurse aide currently active on the Pennsylvania registry
  • Cannot have a drug or alcohol addiction
  • Must not have a medical condition that would keep him or her from providing the necessary assisted living services with reasonable skill and safety
  • Must have the ability to communicate in a mode or manner the resident can understand

Background Checks for Assisted Living

In accordance with the Older Adults Protective Services Act (OAPSA), applicants with prohibitive offenses (see § 10225.503 in the OAPSA) are not allowed to work in Pennsylvania assisted living facilities.

The assisted living facility is required to document all background checks on the Pennsylvania State Police Request for Criminal Record Check form or through the e-patch program.

Requirements for Reporting Abuse

Pennsylvania Assisted Living Facilities must follow the state and federal laws and regulations to ensure the safety and well being of all residents. If you suspect the facility is not in compliance with the laws and regulations, you can file a complaint through the Pennsylvania Long-Term Care Ombudsman by calling (717) 783-8975.

If you suspect your loved one is being abused or you are the one being abused, you should report any form of abuse (physical, mental, sexual, neglect, abandonment or exploitation) by calling the 24-hour elderly hotline at (800) 490-8505.

Pennsylvania COVID-19 Rules for Assisted Living Facilities

Note: The following information was compiled and most recently updated on 2/13/22. 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 Pennsylvania
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? No (Conditions Apply)
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)



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