November is Long-Term Care Awareness Month!

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November is Long-Term Care Awareness Month!

This November marks the 18th anniversary of Long-Term Care Awareness Month. With the holiday season nearly underway and thoughts of family on everyone’s mind, this is the perfect time of year to bring up discussions about the need to consider the important role that long-term care plays in one’s retirement plan.

The need for proper long-term care planning is more important now than ever. The cost of long-term care is high and rising – the median annual cost for a stay in a nursing home is over $85,000[1] – and a number of demographic trends suggest that this will not reverse course anytime soon. Consider the following:

Approximately 10,000 baby boomers turn 65 years old every day [2], and life expectancy at age 65 is now nearly 20 years [3]
3 out of 4 individuals age 65 and older will eventually need some type of long-term care services - home care, community care, or facility care [1]
Approximately 67% of adults age 40 and older say they have done only a little or no planning at all for their own long-term care needs [4]


These statistics show that the population of the United States is aging at a rapid rate, people are living longer than in the past, and many feel ill-prepared for the future. The challenge does not stop with these trends, however. Contrary to what many believe, the costs of long-term care are not covered by health insurance, disability insurance, or Medicare.

Long-Term Care insurance [LTCi] presents the perfect solution to help bridge this gap in coverage and ease the anxiety many feel about the future. By paying for the costs associated with needing care for an extended period of time, whether at home or in a long-term care facility, LTCi covers what many fail to account for when developing a retirement plan.

Whether it’s through their own caregiving experiences, or stories they’ve heard from others, many people understand the impact that a long-term care situation can have on a family and recognize that the biggest threat to retirement income is if the need for long-term care should arise. However, as the findings mentioned earlier show, many people may not be all that familiar with what goes into long-term care planning.

To get the conversation going, it is often helpful to break it down into the basics – the Who, What, Where, When, and Why:

WHO?
The need for care can affect anyone, not just the elderly.
WHAT?
LTCi pays for the costs associated with needing care for an extended period of time, either at home or in a long-term care facility.
WHERE?
LTCi pays for the costs associated with needing care for an extended period of time, either at home or in a long-term care facility.
WHEN?
The best time to buy LTCi is now - you may need coverage when you least expect it, and coverage is going to become more expensive as you age.
WHY?
LTCi is a vital part of retirement planning that provides you and your family with much needed financial security and peace-of-mind.

It is no coincidence that this is a time of the year in which carriers see a significant spike in the number of LTCi claims that are filed. People who travel to visit relatives for the holidays notice ways in which they’ve changed over the past year, and for some, it becomes apparent that their loved ones are in a position where they could benefit from, if not outright need, some form of long-term care services. Fortunately for those who planned ahead, LTCi allows them to access the services they need and receive the most quality care possible.

When you or a loved one is faced with a situation in which long-term care is needed, there is always a great deal of uncertainty. LTCi provides answers to the questions that are on everyone’s mind – What will I do should the need for care arise? How can I protect my retirement income, savings, and assets? If I end up needing care, how can I preserve my family’s financial, emotional, and physical well-being? Take advantage of the awareness raised throughout this month’s campaign to show clients how adding LTCi to their retirement plan can provide much needed security and peace-of-mind.

  1. “Health-Care Dilemma: 10,000 Boomers Retiring Each Day”, CNBC, 2017
  2. “Life Expectancy at Selected Ages”, Centers for Disease Control, 2016
  3. longtermcare.gov
  4. “Long-Term Care in America: View on Who Should Bear the Responsibilities and Costs of Care”, Long-Term Care Poll, 2017