Long Term Care is a must topic of discussion for families with older members. The timing couldn’t be better. Throughout the holiday season, families join together to share traditional festivities and reminisce of holidays past. This family-focused time presents an ideal opportunity to talk with aging family members about their wishes concerning long term care.
Due to advances in medical technology and health care, people are living longer than ever before. In addition, the traditional family, which once included built-in care for elderly family members, is fast becoming obsolete. Today, it is common for adult children to reside in locations far from their aging parents. At the same time, the costs for long-term care services continue to increase.
Long term care insurance typically covers the costs for in-home care, assisted living, and nursing home care. According to industry sources, eight million Americans currently have long term care insurance coverage, with some 400,000 new policies issued in 2007 alone. In addition, roughly 180,000 Americans with long term care insurance policies received benefits amounting to 3.5 billion dollars.*
According to the American Association for Long Term Care Insurance, 50% of those who applied for long term care insurance were between the ages of 55 and 64. Another 26% were between the ages of 45 and 54. As consumers—76 million baby boomers in particular—become aware of the cost-saving benefits of securing health discounts and obtaining more affordable coverage, the age of buyers continues to decline. In 2011, when baby boomers begin turning 65, the number of older people will dramatically increase between 2010 and 2030. In 2030, the older population is projected to be twice as large as in 2000.**
Therefore, it is important to raise awareness, assess risk, and stress the need for proper planning. The need for adequate coverage, especially for those who currently have no coverage, is fast becoming a national issue.
The Long Term Care Awareness Campaign continues to grow, involving a growing number of national organizations and government agencies. The expansion of this campaign allows more time to promote awareness and to provide in-depth educational programs.
We hope that you will take the time to analyze your needs, as well as the needs of close
family members, for long term care.
* Source: American Association for Long Term Care Insurance, 2008 LTCi Sourcebook.
** Source: American Association for Long Term Care Insurance, October 2009.