Do You Need Long Term Care Coverage?
Many people wonder if LTC Insurance is appropriate for them. Here are some concerns our clients have raised:
"I don't need long term care insurance. My health insurance covers me now, and Medicare and Medicare Supplement will cover me later."
This is a very common misconception. Medicare, conventional health insurance and HMOs do not cover most long term care. They generally cover only skilled care, and most long term care is not skilled care—it is custodial care.
Disability insurance does not cover long term care either.
"I don't need long term care insurance now. I am healthy and won't need the coverage for several years."
Many applicants are turned down for LTC Insurance because of a medical condition. The best time to buy coverage is when you're young and in good health. It's also likely to be more affordable. Also, if you wait to buy the insurance you have to get a larger amount, because care costs are going up every year.
"I will pay the cost of long term care myself."
Annual nursing home costs are averaging $140,000 and more in many metropolitan areas, according to the Health Insurance Association of America. The costs are going up every year. How long could you afford to pay for it out of your pocket? And why would you want to?
"My spouse and/or children will take care of me."
They might want to care for you, but will they be able to? And for how long? Family caregiving has changed dramatically. Time, distance and both spouses working make it much more difficult for many families to provide all the care needed. They may need help from professionals, which LTC Insurance can pay for.
"I will never need long term care."
Everyone hopes they will never need long term care. But, according to the American Health Care Association, nearly half of all people over age 65 will spend some time in a nursing home. And if you’re younger, 40% of all long term care is actually provided to people under age 65.
"Long term care insurance costs too much. I cannot afford it."
It's true—LTC Insurance can be expensive. But the cost of not having it can be much greater. Today, the national average cost of a private nursing home room is over $140,000 in many metropolitan areas. The average hourly cost for a visit by a home health aide is $21. Which is more expensive for you: having the insurance, or not having it?
"Medicaid will take care of me."
Medicaid is the Federal-State health insurance program for the poor. If you are poor, Medicaid will pay for a nursing home, but it also takes away many choices. Where, when and how you get your care is up to Medicaid, not you.
Give yourself the peace of mind and take control of your care needs by purchasing Long Term Care insurance.