Extended medical care and assistance can quickly become costly. Long-term care insurance (LTC) is one of the most important parts of a long-term care strategy, which the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services defines as “everything from long-term services and supports and finances.” For individuals who are aging or worried about the financial impact of an emergency, long-term care insurance can provide coverage for necessary medical care and daily assistance.
What’s Covered by Long-Term Care Insurance?
Long-term care insurance typically provides coverage if an individual becomes cognitively impaired or is unable to conduct activities of daily living (commonly abbreviated as ADL), such as bathing or eating. The types of care covered under long-term insurance generally include, but may not be limited to, intermediate or comprehensive care in a licensed nursing facility, as well as home health care services provided through a licensed agency.
A policy may also provide coverage for assisted living, adult daycare or respite care for family caregivers. Depending on the individual’s needs, they may qualify for coverage for “alternative care” or a specialized treatment plan developed in conjunction with a licensed care provider. This may include modifications to the individual’s home to accommodate physical disabilities.
Why Long Term Care Insurance?
If you are unsure of how you may fund long-term care in your home, a nursing home, assisted living or modifications to your home to accommodate physical disability, you could benefit from long-term care insurance. A policy will protect your financial assets from out-of-pocket costs, which can be in excess of $50,000 per year for skilled nursing home care. In addition, a long-term care policy can provide you and your family with more choice and autonomy when selecting a long-term care facility based on quality, proximity and other important factors.
Do I Need to Invest in Long-Term Care Insurance?
An estimated 40 percent of senior citizens experience a need for long-term care–and 54 percent will require care for more than one year. Factors that could impact the likelihood that you require care services include health risk factors and family history.
Individuals approaching 65 years or older are more likely to need long-term care, but anyone can experience accidents or health events at any stage of life that necessitate ongoing assistance with daily activities. In fact, 37 percent of individuals receiving long-term care are 64 years or younger.
Who needs a long-term care policy? Anyone concerned about the financial burden of long-term nursing home stay or home health care. Health needs can be unpredictable, but a long-term care policy can provide security and peace of mind.