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Do I Need Long Term Care Insurance?

Should you buy long-term care insurance? Where do you start to look for answers? At Ieuter Insurance group, we think education on this topic is very important. Let’s look at the map for long-term care created by one of the nation’s largest insurers this coverage, Genworth. The map reflects the average cost, by state, of a semi-private room in a nursing care facility for one year.Researchers have recognized long-term care as “one of the largest uninsured financial risks facing the elderly in the United States.” Despite this only 10 percent of people over age 60 were covered in 2000.

According to a Wall Street Journal article on the topic, there are both pros and cons to weigh when making the decision. It’s tough to choose whether to buy long-term care coverage because there are so many unknowns! For example: what is the long-term care insurance you’re paying for now going to provide you in the future? If you do need it, how long will you need it and at what age? What kind of plans are available and what are premiums?

For many, the choice is a financial one. If you are well-off, insurance is often less necessary due to the ability to afford nursing facilities or home visits costs out of pocket. If you have a lower income, Medicaid programs may pay for services and care. However, for a majority of Americans - the middle-class - the decision becomes a very important one.  

Bob Bua, president of Genworth’s Care Scout customer division, encourages people to keep two things in mind: Neither Medicare nor traditional health insurers cover long-term care in a facility. “There’s no one else on your side other than a long-term care policy.” In situations that require lengthy stays, many Americans are put in bad financial circumstances by going through assets much more quickly than planned. A majority of visits to a nursing facility are for a short period of time. For example, one may stay for recovery following surgery. The Medicare program will pay claims for the first 100 days with a copayment from the individual. Nevertheless a copayment, if not accounted for, may still diminish one’s savings. The strain can then spread to loved ones who contribute to paying for care or providing for a family member.

Some things become clear with even a basic discussion such as this: long-term care is a complicated. It is not like purchasing home or auto insurance and can have a long-lasting impact on your family. Please call us today, we have plan options available at many price points. We’re here to help you do the right thing for yourself and your family.