With a record number of Americans continuing to enter their senior years, there is a greater need for care options. In addition to the routine medical checkups and prescriptions, one often overlooked area of aging needs is long-term care.
Nearly 70 percent of people turning age 65 will need long-term care at some point in their lives, according to the U.S. Health and Human Services Agency. While most people associate long-term care with nursing homes or skilled medical assistance, long-term care is actually a range of services and support you may need to meet your daily personal care needs. Some of these needs may be non-medical Activities of Daily Living (ADL), which include bathing, toileting, dressing and eating. Others may include housework, taking medications and shopping.
These necessary activities may become increasingly difficult with age, and relying on family and friends, or even an aging spouse, is not always a viable solution. Long-term care insurance is designed to provide the funds necessary to ensure the necessary medical and non-medical support, ranging from in-home assistance to nursing homes.
“From what I’ve seen as a provider of senior services, the common misconception is that Medicare will pay for long-term care,” said Troy Tice, owner of Amada Senior Care North Houston. “Medicare will not pay for help with ADLs, which is the biggest type of assistance we see seniors needing. Long-term care insurance is the best bet for getting your needs met. Most of my clients purchased a policy many years ago and don’t remember exactly how much care it will cover.”
With nursing homes averaging around $6,000 per month, assisted living communities around $4,500 and skilled workers around $20 per hour, the out-of-pocket costs of long-term care could be astronomical and an extreme burden to a family. The monthly cost of long-term care insurance depends on your age at the time of enrolling and the type of plan you choose, but could be a worthy investment toward enjoying your retirement.
“Fortunately, we are living healthier and longer lives nowadays, but with that comes an increased demand for health care services aimed specifically at senior citizens,” said Tice. “I’ve seen mostly middle-class families affected, as their care will not be paid by Medicare or Medicaid, and the unexpected costs of long-term care typically deplete their hard-earned retirement accounts very quickly.”
Long-term care insurance can help you plan for the future, knowing that aging will not cause undue stress on yourself or loved ones. “Having a long-term care insurance plan in place helps seniors enjoy their long-awaited retirement years with peace of mind,” said Tice. “Knowing you have the resources to enjoy a long and happy retirement allows for more time and energy to spent doing the things you love – you’ve earned it. The best advice I can give to someone with a long-term care policy is to make sure that everyone who would be involved in an aging decision sit down together to understand the policy. If it becomes to stressful just call us and we can help you understand it.”
Amada Senior Care North Houston provides non-medical in-home care that is highly personalized and cost-effective. For more information, call (832) 209-8844 or visit www.amadanorthhouston.com, www.amadacentralhouston.com or www.amadasugarland.com.