Why Don't People Plan for Long-Term Care? - Part 1

Reason #1 – People don’t understand the payment sources of long-term care

I am always amazed how many people are under the misconception that Medicare will pay for all long-term care services.

The truth is that Medicare does not pay for ongoing long-term care (although it will pay for intermittent stays at nursing facilities). Yet, according to a Genworth Cost of Care Survey in 2015, 34% surveyed thought Medicare would pay for long-term care while 27% were unsure.

Furthermore, Medicare doesn’t typically pay for much if any care in the home. However, 36% of those surveyed thought it would and 27% reported that they were unsure.

As for private insurance, most health insurance plans will not cover long-term services like a nursing home or ongoing care provided at home by a licensed home health care aide. Yet, 18% of Americans age 40 and older believe that their insurance will cover the costs of ongoing nursing home care. 25% believe their plan will pay for ongoing care at home. About 1 in 5 people surveyed were unsure of the coverage provided for these types of long-term care services.

The reality is that there are several sources of payment for long-term care, but Medicaid is the largest payer. In 2013, Medicaid paid for 51% of the national long-term care bill totaling $310 billion. However, 51% of Americans age 40 and older reported that they don’t expect to have to rely on Medicaid to help pay for their ongoing living assistance expenses as they age.

I hope this information is helpful for you. Although not a popular topic amongst many, long-term care is an increasingly important one. Massih Law, LLC is in the business of providing legal options for people in planning for their potential long-term care needs.

If you, a loved one or a client needs help figuring out their options, please think of us. We can help and we are always happy to hear from you. You can reach us at (203) 651-5521.

Categories: Elder Law, Medicaid