It’s a fact: People today are living longer. Although that’s good news, the odds of requiring some sort of long-term care increase as you get older. And as the costs of home care, nursing homes, and assisted living escalate, you probably wonder how you’re ever going to be able to afford long-term care.
What is long-term care?
Most people associate long-term care with the elderly. But it applies to the ongoing care of individuals of all ages who can no longer independently perform basic activities of daily living (ADLs)–such as bathing, dressing, or eating–due to an illness, injury, or cognitive disorder. This care can be provided in a number of settings, including private homes, assisted-living facilities, adult day-care centers, hospices, and nursing homes.
Long-term care refers to a host of services that aren’t covered by regular health insurance. This includes assistance with routine daily activities, like bathing, dressing or getting in and out of bed.
A long-term care insurance policy helps cover the costs of that care when you have a chronic medical condition, a disability or a disorder such as Alzheimer’s disease. Most policies will reimburse you for care given in a variety of places, such as:
- Your home.
- A nursing home.
- An assisted living facility.
- An adult day care center.
Finding a Policy
Here are some criteria you should look at when considering LTC insurance for your spouse and yourself.
Find out whether your LTC insurance:-
- Provides an adequate minimum benefit per day/ week/month while confined in a nursing home or hospital.
- Covers you for intermediate care as well as skilled care.
- Requires prior hospitalization in order to receive nursing home benefits.
- Offers lifetime benefits -although you may want to reduce your premium cost by buying a policy with a lesser benefit period.
- Provides home health-care benefits. (But be aware that policies offering this benefit will cost more.)