Linda DeGraffenreid, Unlimited Care of North Texas, Inc., Collin LIVING WELL Magazine (formerly SENIOR Magazine)
Plan, Prepare, Protect and Face Reality against a very HIGH RISK of needing some form of Long-Term Care Services.
The long-term care services that you or a loved one may need some day vary from in-home personal care, home health care, adult day care, respite care, assisted living, nursing home care and caregiving support. Without looking into all the available options and by not taking time to plan accordingly, you or a loved one may be faced with serious financial, emotional or physical devastation. The KEY POINT is to take the time to plan. Today, there are only limited ways to pay for long-term care services in our society. Primarily, the only three ways to pay for these services in our country today are: A. Cash (Yours), B. Public Assistance, (if you are broke) or C. Long-Term Care Insurance, (other people’s money). Facts and figures also show that there are a growing number of families concerned about eldercare issues. These issues may be in any area of financial, emotional, physical or just supportive.
Consider these facts:
Seventy percent of retirees (65 and over) will require some sort of long-term care before they pass (in home live-in care, adult day care, Alzheimer centers, assisted living facilities, nursing homes). Regardless of which one they will need – it’s going to cost a lot of money! How would you pay for it?
- Before 1900, only one in 10 people lived to age 65.
- Today, nine out 10 people live to be 65 years in age.
- The fastest growing segment of our population is the group over the age of 85.
- Three of four or 75% of all seniors 65+ will need some form of home care during their lifetime.
- There are four people who receive home care for every person in a nursing home.
- For those persons that reach the age of 85, there is a 70% chance that he or she will need long-term care.
- Sixty-seven percent of children who become caregivers become clinically depressed.
- Fifty percent of women 65 years of age will need long-term care before they pass.
- Thirty-three percent of men 65 years of age will need long-term care before they pass.
- Seventy percent of all couples over the age of 65 will have one spouse that will need long-term care before they pass.
- By age 65, 10% of the population already has Alzheimer’s disease or a similar form of irreversible dementia.
As you can see, the odds are very high that you will need some form of long-term care in your lifetime. These services will have to be paid by someone and that someone is usually you until you “spend down” your life savings to the poverty level. Just think about an economic way to pay for the services that you may need in the future by purchasing long-term care insurance while you are healthy enough to qualify for it. Do yourself and your family a favor. Take the action to preserve what you have worked a lifetime to accumulate. Long-term care insurance may not be for everyone – but it is everybody who has either income or assets (or both) worth protecting.
As the administrator for Unlimited Care of North Texas, Inc., I have seen the benefits to patients when a family has the financial means or the availability of long-term care insurance. It allows their loved ones to remain in their own home, where home might be, where they feel safe, secure and comfortable with a trusted caregiver. It allows the children to remain children and to spend quality time with their loved ones rather than having to worry about their daily care and needs. As we enter into our 15th year of providing 24-hour live-in care for over 500 families in the North Texas area, we take pride in our trusted staff, employees and our integrity.
Our agency also has registered nurses on staff to monitor medications and advise caregivers and families of any medical changes that might occur. We are licensed, bonded and insured, and take all long-term care insurances and are willing to provide all the paperwork necessary that the insurance companies require to make that process much smoother. It is our goal and mission to treat our patients like family.
Author Linda DeGraffenreid is the CFO/Administrator of Unlimited Care of North Texas, Inc., which is entering its 15th year in business, and may be reached at 940-390-0493.