Long Term Care
Long Term Care Awareness Month 2012
Many people mistakenly think that their health insurance or Medicare will cover long-term care services. If you develop a chronic illness or become disabled for an extended period of time, you may need long-term care. The cost of long-term care can quickly deplete your life savings.
Who Needs It?
If you can afford long-term care insurance, you should consider it. Anyone could be affected by an accident or illness that leaves them unable to care for themselves. Having long-term care insurance can ensure you will not be dependent on others or a burden to your loved ones. It also will ensure you have access to first-rate care when you need it most.
How Much Does Care Cost?
Long-term care services can be considerably high. While the prices range based on your area, the average annual nursing home cost is $69,000 to $78,000. A home health care aide can cost $20,000 annually.
What are the Types of Care?
There are three main types of long-term care: skilled, intermediate, and custodial.
Skilled care is daily care that is meant to help you get better. It is typically used when you have an illness or injury that you can recover from. With skilled care you have a treatment plan that may consist of many different types of treatment meant to get you back to good health.
Intermediate care is the same as skilled care only it is not administered on a daily basis. If you needed to visit a physical therapist 4 days a week, that would be intermediate care.
Custodial care is meant to help with activities of daily living. These activities can include bathing, toileting, feeding, etc. Custodial care can be administered in your home or in a health care facility.
When Should I Buy?
It is best to buy long-term care insurance when you are relatively young. This will allow you to lock in a lower rate. Most insurance companies will offer coverage to individuals between the ages of 18 and 84.