Monthly Education Focus: Long-Term Care

This month, we are focusing our educational series on long-term care. What are the risk factors that affect the likelihood of a person needing long-term care?

Long-term Care providers provide services that can take place in the home or in a facility. These services include.

  • Home-based and community-based carePersonal care to assist with Activities of Daily Living (ADL’s)
  • Homemaker services to help people stay in their home by providing assistance with activities like meal preparation, food shopping, laundry, and housecleaning
  • Home health care provided by trained medical personnel
  • Adult Day Care
  • Respite Care – to help relieve family caregivers when they are caring for loved ones with terminal or severe chronic illnesses
  • Hospice Care
  • Skilled nursing care facilities
  • Residential care facilities for the elderly (different from skilled nursing facilities in that they don’t provide medical care)
  • Continuing care retirement facilities and other retirement home communities

The costs of Long-term care depends on the area you live in and the type of services needed.  In California, for instance, today’s median annual cost for various types of long-term care services currently are:[2]

  • $52,624 for home health aide services
  • $48,000 for care in a residential care facility for the elderly (RCFE)
  • $91,250 for a semi-private room in a skilled nursing facility (SNF) Keep in mind that these are the amounts needed to pay for care today
  • These costs are rising rapidly at an annual compound rate between 2-5 percent inflation.

As one can see, the cost of long-term care expenses can be catastrophic to one’s financial situation.

  • Stand-alone policies that provide long-term care insurance only, or provide long-term care benefits as a rider to another policy like an annuity, life insurance, or critical illness contract
  • Group long-term care insurance (Check the group LTC insurance “Certificate of Coverage” to understand the benefits and insured’s rights under the plan)
    • LTC insurance premiums paid by the employer on behalf of the employee are 100% tax deductible, and the employee can exclude 100% of the premiums paid from their gross income.