How Are Day Programs for Disabled Individuals Funded?

Day programs are essential, especially for disabled adults, to help them grow, gain independence, and give caregivers a much-needed break. But day programs are expensive, and when you add that expense to ongoing medical care, durable medical equipment (DME) in the home, and more, it can be challenging to afford a day program. Luckily, each state has some resources available to help pay for day programs. There are some federal resources and even private sources that help fund these services.


Medicaid is a program funded by the states and the federal government designed to provide health coverage for people with disabilities. It is likely that your loved one will be eligible for some sort of Medicaid coverage for an adult day program. Medicaid is a collection of different programs provided by the state and federal government, and each state has rules on how Medicaid benefits are applied. So you will have to work with your caseworker or people at the department that handles developmental disabilities in your state to figure out what you are eligible for.

Day program participants using durable medical equipment (DME) in Providence, RI

Medicaid Waivers

These are state Medicaid programs that are often used to fund adult day programs. These waivers are also known as HCBS Waivers, 1915(c) Waivers, 1115 Demonstration Waivers, or Home and Community Based Waivers. Originally Medicaid was used to provide long-term care within nursing homes. The Medicaid waivers allow the states to offer Medicaid services for individuals who still live at home but still require a nursing home level of care and supervision. Medicaid waivers do have some limitations, though. For example, if other state programs provide funding for adult day programs, you need to use those programs instead of the Medicaid waivers.

Historically, long-term care for Medicaid was provided only in nursing homes. However, Medicaid waivers now allow states to offer long-term care Medicaid services outside of nursing homes to individuals who generally require a nursing home level of care but who live at home. It is under these waivers that most individuals receive assistance from Medicaid for adult day programs.

Department of Veteran Affairs

If your loved one is a veteran, the US Department of Veterans Affairs runs its own adult day care programs for veterans in most states. Some of these programs are free for veterans, while others accept payment on a sliding scale. Check out for more information.

Ask for Help from the Day Program Provider

Some day programs receive funding from private or public funds such as grants which they can use to help families in need to help pay for the program. The day program director will likely be aware of any funding resources available that you might be eligible for to help you figure out ways to pay for the program.  

Looking for Durable Medical Equipment (DME) for Your Day Program?

Give us here at Lift and Care Systems a call. We have been serving disabled individuals and their caregivers in the states of Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island for over 20 years now. We have the name-brand durable medical equipment that you need such as Surehands Lift Systems, Bruno Stair Lifts, and Best Bath accessibility products (just to name a few). Contact us today for a free consultation at (508) 465-5254 or fill out our online contact form to speak to one of our durable medical equipment specialists today.