Healthcare News

Protecting The Value Of Long-Term Care Insurance

July 21, 2017

Today, U.S. Senators Mel Martinez (R-FL) and Herb Kohl (D-WI) of the Special Committee on Aging examined the long-term care insurance industry. The high cost of long-term care and the current economic instability are creating significant financial planning challenges for baby-boomers, seniors, and individual states. The committee discussed the industry's current limitations and how to prepare for the growing number of seniors who will be in need of long-term care.

"When planning their financial future, many Americans overlook the possibility of long-term care," said Martinez, the lead Republican on the Senate Special Committee on Aging. "The number of seniors requiring long-term care is on the rise, and these expenses could cause a person to quickly deplete their finances and become dependent on Medicaid. Personal planning, such as purchasing a long-term care insurance policy, offers a viable way to save seniors' assets and reduce a potentially large future financial burden."

The Department of Health and Human Services estimates that about nine million men and women over the age of 65 are in need of long-term care. By 2020, that number will be close to 12 million. Presently, only about 10 percent of seniors have chosen to purchase long-term care health insurance. To encourage more people to purchase long-term care insurance, the federal government has joined states in the Long-Term Care Partnership Program.

"The Long-Term Care Partnership Program offers enhanced insurance products that use Medicaid as a form of re-insurance and asset protection for consumers, while also saving states money," said Martinez. "As this industry continues to evolve, states should determine whether private long-term care insurance is sufficient to help each individual afford long-term care."

The Special Committee on Aging