1. What is long-term care?

Long-term care refers to the ongoing services and support needed by people who have chronic health conditions and disabilities.

There are three levels of long-term care:
– Skilled care-round-the-clock care by professional health care providers.
– Intermediate care-less frequent care
– Custodial care-personal care such as bathing, eating, and dressing which Perpetual Home Care provides with their CNA’s or nurses aides.

Long-term care is not just provided in nursing homes-in fact, the most common type is home-based care which is the care provided by Perpetual Home Care.

2. Why is it important to plan for long-term care?

a. The odds of needing long-term care are high:

– Approximately 40% of people will need long-term care after reaching 65*
– Approximately 14% of people age 71 and older have Alzheimer’s disease**
– Younger people may also need long-term care as a result of a disabling accident or illness

b. The cost of long-term care is rising

*National Clearinghouse for Long-Term Care Information, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2011
**Alzheimer’s Association, 2011

3. Doesn’t Medicare pay for long-term care?

Medicare ONLY provides limited coverage for skilled care of physical therapy. Medicare does not provide coverage for custodial or personal care which is the type of care provided by Perpetual Home Care and the type of care most elderly people need.

4. Can’t I pay for care out of pocket?

The cost of long-term care is high. You may have trouble affording extended care if it is needed.

5. Should I buy long-term care insurance?

Long-term care insurance can can help you preserve your assets and guarantee that you will have access to a range of care options. However, it can be expensive, so before you purchase a policy, make sure you can afford the premiums.

The cost of long-term care insurance depends on your age and the benefits you choose. Here are some key features to consider:

– Benefit amount-maximum amount your policy will pay for your care each day
– Benefit period-number of years your policy will pay benefits
– Elimination period-number of days you must pay for your own care before the policy begins paying benefits
– Types of facilities included-home care, assisted living, adult day care, and nursing homes
– Inflation protection-optional feature that enables your coverage to keep pace with rising prices

Perpetual Home Care would like to thank Remy W. Heskett, financial advisor with Waddell & Reed, for providing us with the above long-term care information. For further questions or information regarding long-term care insurance, please contact her at: rheskett@wradvisors.com.

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