Vermont is known for its rural farms, healthy living, friendly people, and low crime, which makes it ideal for seniors who appreciate beautiful scenery and rural living. This guide summarizes the laws governing assisted living facilities in the state, explains the available financial assistance programs in Vermont, and compiles free resources for seniors.
Directory of Assisted Living Facilities in Vermont
Finding the right assisted living facility is a difficult, yet important task, and knowing where to start your search is the first step. The directory below gives details and in-depth information on over 50 facilities in the state of Vermont.
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Paying For Assisted Living in Vermont
The Cost of Assisted Living in Vermont
The monthly median cost of assisted living in Vermont is $4,500, about $500 more than the national average. According to Genworth’s 2018 Cost of Care Survey, assisted living in Vermont is also less expensive than the median in all but two nearby states, New York and Rhode Island.
While independent living is typically cheaper than assisted living in Vermont, senior living options that offer the same or higher level of care as assisted living are considerably more expensive. Nursing home care is more than double the cost of assisted living, and in-home care is considerably more expensive – even without factoring in the costs of living that aren’t included with in-home care.
Financial Assistance for Assisted Living in Vermont
Vermont Assistive Community Care Services
The Assistive Community Care Services (ACCS) program is a division of Vermont’s Medicaid that services elderly and disabled applicants who live in or plan to live assisted living facilities. It’s important to note that while ACCS covers the cost of care in assisted living facilities, it doesn’t cover the cost of room and board.
Who Is Eligible?
Applicants need to meet the following eligibility requirements:
- Vermont residents age 65 or older who need a nursing home level of care
- Live in or plan to move to a licensed Level 3 assisted living facility
- If single, monthly income cannot exceed $2,250 and assets must not be over $2,000
How to Apply
To apply for the ACCS program, following these steps:
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 benefits.va.gov.
- 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 longtermcare.acl.gov
- 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 longtermcare.acl.gov.
- 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 Vermont
Area Agencies on Aging
Area Agencies on Aging (AAA) is a network of hundreds of nonprofit organizations across America that provide federally funded services to adults over 60 in their local areas.
Vermont has five Area Agencies on Aging that offer comprehensive information on various kinds of programs and community supports for seniors.
|Area Agency on Aging||Address||Phone Number|
(Addison, Chittenden, Franklin, and Grand Isle Counties)
76 Pearl Street, Suite 201
(Lamoille, Orange, and Washington Counties)
59 N. Main Street, Suite 200
(802) 479-0531 or
(Caledonia, Essex, and Orleans Counties)
481 Summer Street, Suite 101
(Windham and Windsor Counties)
38 Pleasant Street
(866) 673-8376 or
(Bennington and Rutland Counties)
143 Maple Street
(802) 786-5990 or
Elder Law Project
The Vermont Legal Aid Elder Law Project helps assist, advise, and represent adults over 60 with power of attorney and advance directive documents, or with legal issues such as health care, home health services, government benefits, and more.
More than 5,000 ophthalmologists work with EyeCare America to provide free eye exams for the elderly who qualify. Eligibility requirements for EyeCare America’s Seniors Program include:
- You must be a legal U.S. resident who is 65 years of age or older.
- You must not belong to an HMO or have eye care benefits through the VA.
- Your last eye exam must have taken place three or more years ago.
Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program
Like many states, Vermont maintains a Long-Term Care Ombudsman program. The Ombudsman is tasked with:
- Educating the elderly and families on the residents’ quality of life and care
- Resolving complaints by residents or their family to ensure the resident’s rights are being upheld
- Advocating for residents who live in assisted living facilities, nursing homes, and residential care homes
- Protecting the health, welfare, and rights of residents living in long-term care facilities, as well as those who receiving home services through Choices for Care
Social Security Offices
Vermont’s Social Security Offices provide help for seniors looking for assistance with their social security benefits. By contacting or visiting a Social Security office, you can get a better understanding of your benefits. Below is a list of Social Security Offices in Vermont.
|Social Security Office||Address||Phone Number|
Burlington Social Security Office
58 Pearl Street
(877) 840-5776 or
Montpelier Social Security Office
1 Home Farm Way
(877) 505-4542 or
Rutland Social Security Office
88 Merchants Row, 330 Asa Bloomer Bldg
(866) 690-1944 or
As in most states, Vermont has VA centers to help veterans and their spouses with financing options for various kinds of care and other services. These offices can provide guidance on eligibility and direct you or your loved one to the best support options available.
|VA Center||Address||Phone Number|
South Burlington Vet Center
19 Gregory Drive Suite 201
White River Junction Vet Center
118 Prospect Street Suite 100
Assisted Living Laws and Regulations in Vermont
The Department of Aging and Disabilities enforces comprehensive regulations for assisted living communities in the state. These regulations cover the following topics, among many other things.
Assisted Living Care Plans
If a resident requires or receives care, the assisted living facility, the resident or the resident’s legal representative (if applicable) must develop a written care plan that includes a description of the resident’s needs and supports the resident’s dignity, privacy, individuality, choice, and independence. This must be updated yearly, or when the resident’s needs change.
Assisted Living Admission Requirements
Assisted living facilities in Vermont cannot accept any resident with a serious acute illness, a resident who must have a ventilator or respirator, or a resident who requires two people to transfer him or her to their bed or chair, and/or to walk.
If a resident is already living in the ALF and the need for the aforementioned equipment, treatment or care occurs, or the resident becomes terminally ill, he or she will not have to move if the ALF can safely meet the resident’s level of care needs.
Assisted Living Scope of Care
Assisted living facilities in Vermont provide room and board and other services, including:
- Personal care
- Help with activities of daily living (e.g. preparing meals, housework, laundry, etc.)
- Intermittent skilled nursing services
- Medication administration, assistance, and management
- Skilled nursing care (if needed)
Assisted Living Medicaid Policy
Residents who require a nursing home level care may find financial assistance through the Vermont Assistive Community Care Services (ACCS) program. Vermont seniors who reside in an assisted living facility receive financial assistance for case management, nursing overview & assessment, personal care services, medication management, recreational activities, 24-hour on-site supervision, laundry, and housekeeping. This program does not cover expenses for room and board.
Assisted Living Facility Requirements
Unless a resident chooses to share their unit with another resident, assisted living facilities in Vermont must give the resident his or her own unit. Every unit is required to have the following:
- Sufficient storage and closet space
- A separate bathroom that includes a toilet, sink, grab bars, shower or tub, mirror, towel rack, non-skid surfaces, and grab bars in the showers and tubs
- A kitchen with food preparation and storage area
- Temperature controls for heating and cooling
- An emergency response system to alert on-duty staff
- A common, accessible dining space
- Two common, accessible areas that residents can use for socialization and recreational activities
Medication Management Regulations
If they are able to do so, residents may administer their own medication. If residents cannot self-administer their medications, then an RN or trained staff member, under the supervision of an RN, can give it to them. Residents do have the right to direct their own care and refuse medication.
Although there are no staff-to-patient ratios, assisted living facilities are required to have a minimum of one personal care assistant on-site and awake to assist residents 24 hours per day.
Staff Training Requirements
All Vermont assisted living facilities must ensure the staff they hire to care for residents is 18 years of age or older and properly trained. The training requirements for employees include the following:
- Staff must be trained in the philosophy and principles of assisted living.
- Any staff that provides personal care to residents must be trained in the provision of personal care activities (e.g. medication management and administration, behavioral management, documentation, transfers, infection control, toileting, and bathing).
- Direct care staff must be trained on how to communicate with residents who have Alzheimer’s or other types of dementia.
- Every year staff is required to receive at least 12 hours of training on a resident’s rights, fire safety, emergency evacuations, emergency response, policies and procedures regarding reports of abuse, neglect or exploitation, respectful and effective resident interaction, infection control measures, and general supervision and care of residents.
- Once a year, directors and administrators are required to complete 20 hours of training on the philosophy and principles of assisted living, in addition to the care of elderly and disabled.
Background Checks for Assisted Living
Vermont assisted living facilities are prohibited from asking applicants about their criminal history on job applications, and the facility is not allowed to run a background check until they have made a conditional employment offer.
When the assisted living facility does request the applicant’s criminal history from the Vermont Criminal Information Center (VCIC), they are required to do the following:
- Obtain the applicant’s written consent on a release form provided by the VCIC
- Let the applicant know if they plan to remove him or her from consideration based on the contents of the background check
- Provide the applicant with a copy of his or her background check
- Keep any information obtained from the background check confidential
- Let the applicant know they will not be hired for the position based on the report
- Give the applicant a chance to explain his or her past, including any post-conviction rehabilitation efforts
Requirements for Reporting Abuse
There are state and federal laws and regulations in place to ensure residents in assisted living facilities are not mistreated in any way. Report any concerns to the Vermont Department of Disabilities, Aging & Independent Living’s Adult Protective Services (APS).
There are five ways to anonymously report elder abuse, neglect or exploitation, but APS recommends you use their online complaint form for faster processing. If you are unable to file a report using the online form, you can contact APS through any of these methods:
Phone: (800) 564-1612
Email: [email protected]