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Should You Buy Long-Term Care?

An important part of healthcare that most people overlook is long-term care.

Long-term care is not something that people like to think or talk about, and usually the conversation comes up after there already exists a need for care. In this situation, it’s impossible to be proactive and therefore the sooner you begin thinking about long-term care options, the easier it will be long run for the person need long-term care and their loved ones.

What is long-term care insurance exactly and when does it come into play? Long-term care usually refers to the care being provided to assist with the activities of daily living which can include bathing, getting dressed, toileting, preparing meals, and transportation. When a person actually needs long-term care the costs can be astronomical if there is no insurance to supplement. Without adequate planning, many people find themselves paying out of their savings for the long-term care bills. These costs can add up quickly. According to the Wall Street Journal, 70% of those who reach the age of 65 or older will be in need of long-term care. The cost of an average of $250 a day will be required to care for a mature individual; a cost that not many families can afford without adequate planning.

Most industry sources like Kiplinger.com suggest that the best time to take out a long-term care policy considering risk and cost is in your 50s. Planning 30 years in advance may help you in the long run, because payouts are higher and premiums are lower when you enroll during this time. 

Relying on government programs may not be enough when you reach the need for long-term care services. Medicare does not cover long-term care, and while Medicaid does, we are seeing more and more states cut benefits. This means that if you are relying on state benefits only, your options may be limited. Additionally, these programs are to help those that don’t have high enough incomes and assets. People who have too many resources are required to use their savings to pay for care. This can all be prevented with long-term care insurance policies.

If you are reading this post, it means you are at least in the beginning stages of thinking about long-term care and potentially taking out an insurance policy. As you get older, it will be harder to be accepted by long-term care insurers, health conditions can occur and general health can decline. If you need long-term care, it’s generally too late. In regards to risk, there are people in their 60’s that require assisted living and skilled nursing. When this happens it can be very disruptive to a family if not adequately protected. Even if you think it might be too late, it is still worth speaking with an insurance agent to get all your options.

This was a guest blog post from Jacob Edward, the manager of Senior Planning in Phoenix Arizona. Jacob founded Senior Planning in 2007 and has helped many Arizona seniors and their families navigate the process of long term care planning. Senior Planning provides assistance to seniors and the disabled finding and arranging care services, as well as applying for state and federal benefits. 

Although Varney Agency does not provide Long-Term Care Insurance, John Rothwell, our Life & Health Account Executive, can refer you to the right source for your Long-Term Care options. Reach out to John today: jrothwell@varneyagency.com | 207.557.8963

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