By the time you're 65, chances are you will require assistance at some point of your life. The older you get, the more frequently you’ll need to see your doctor, pay for medical bills as well as cater for long-term care expenses.
If you pay for these services out of your pocket, it will cost you a pretty penny which can wipe out your lifetime of savings in a short period of time.
Why Long-Term Care is Growing in Popularity
Although your loved ones would like to help you face your health challenges, this is not always possible. To fill this gap, long-term care organizations like Mom’s Home Care exist to help with your day to day non-medical needs.
Some of the tasks they help with include running errands on your behalf, taking you to your doctor’s appointment as well as assisting with dressing, bathing, housework, and laundry. They also remind you of important tasks such as taking your medicine.
Even though your family might offer to stay with you and provide care, you might still prefer professional caregivers because you don't want to inconvenience them. When your family is providing you with long-term care it means they're putting their lives on hold for an undetermined amount of time. You might also not feel comfortable with close family members helping you with personal activities such as bathing and toileting.
Professional caregivers assist patients by keeping them warm, preventing them from falling, and discouraging them from activities that might make their conditions worse. As experts with years of experience, they are very knowledgeable in the field. They’re also compassionate, empathetic, patient and always willing to do everything in their power to make your life more comfortable.
To afford the services of these professional caregivers, it’s a good idea to sign up for long-term care insurance coverage.
Why You Need Long-Term Care Insurance
Remember how financial experts always encourage you to save for a rainy day? The same concept is applicable when it comes to your health. As you age, you will increasingly experience health challenges. These could range from mild issues such as fatigue to serious ones such as a terminal illness.
They don’t necessarily have to be caused by old age. You could suffer a handicap while working, or require surgery even if you’re not yet considered a senior. These challenges will severely affect you, not just physically and emotionally but financially as well.
To solve this problem, long-term care insurance (LTCI) enables you to pay manageable amounts of money every year towards a special fund. This will ultimately ease the financial burden on you when you need assistance the most.
Recent Trends in the LTCI Market
As opposed to traditional insurance policies that used to have one-size fits all approach, LTCI is becoming increasingly segmented. This is aimed at customizing insurance policies towards meeting specific needs. As a result, there are a lot of combination or hybrid insurance plans available.
Insurance providers have also shown an increasing willingness to innovate as far as pricing is concerned. If you’re worried about paying for a plan that you might end up outliving, you can always pick an option that allows you to access your benefits when you need them the most.
Another exciting trend concerns the attraction of even younger people towards LTCI. Insurance companies used to market these plans mostly to seniors but younger people who are more concerned about their long-term wellbeing are showing a keen interest in them.
Policyholders are also signing up for asset-based LTCI plans in more significant numbers. These types of plans have several benefits, such as offering guaranteed premiums without haphazard increases, as well as more flexibility in the payment of said premiums. They also provide the option for a beneficiary receiving your benefits in the form of life insurance benefits, in case you pass on without making use of them.
Some insurance companies are beginning to experiment with more extended elimination periods. These will ultimately reduce the overall amount one pays in premiums.
If these positive trends continue, LTCI will increase in popularity and see increased uptake from people who might need long-term care services in the future.
Benefits of Long-Term Care Insurance Coverage
Although Medicare and Medicaid offer some health coverage, they still fall short of solving your most pressing long-term healthcare needs. Long-term care insurance goes a step further and covers costs associated with activities that other insurance plans don’t.
These activities include taking care of your hygiene, monitoring you to prevent falls and other injuries as well as special medical dietary needs. If covered from your pocket, such costs can quickly drain your finances.
Another benefit of LTCI is the peace of mind you gain. This coverage does away with the stress you would have otherwise experienced if you’d paid out of pocket. Your family can also rest easy knowing you’re being taken care of by professionals.
LTCI also allows you some independence, which in turn enables you to live your life with dignity. Instead of depending on family for your medical needs, some of whom might brand you a nag, you can keep living in relative comfort even while tackling your health condition. This is especially beneficial for seniors who need regular medication.
With this kind of insurance, you also have more choice concerning where you want to receive care. This gives you the power to choose a venue you’re most comfortable with. Your professional caregivers can visit you at home, at an assisted living facility, and a nursing home. Other options such as Medicaid don’t give you a lot of choices regarding this critical requirement. They provide a nursing home as your only option for receiving long-term care.
As a bonus, you might be eligible for income tax deductions if you sign up for an LTCI plan. Depending on your age and the state you live in, this tax relief will provide some much needed financial boost towards your future healthcare needs.
Factors that Influence Your Long-Term Care Insurance Premiums
The amount you pay as premiums will depend on some terms. Even though it’s not easy to pinpoint the specific amount of money you’ll pay, it’s good to be aware of the factors that determine your premiums.
These factors include:
The healthier you are, the lower your premiums will be. You should shun off lifestyle choices that put you at risk of falling ill earlier such as smoking and eating junk food. Pre-existing conditions such as heart disease also make it more likely that you’ll pay more.
- Benefit Period
You’ll pay premiums depending on how long your policy lasts. If it covers a longer period, you’ll generally pay lower premiums as opposed to a short span.
Younger people are less likely to suffer from the pre-existing medical conditions mentioned above. Statistically speaking they also have a longer time to live so this makes them eligible for lower premiums.
In some instances, gender also plays a role. Women generally have a higher life expectancy than men, they might benefit from lower premiums too.
- Financial Ability
Insurance plans also consider your financial strength. Depending on the policy you pick, you might be asked to pay more. In return, you’ll be eligible for more benefits than someone who chooses a lower priced insurance plan.
Generally, annual inflation reduces the value of money. Some insurers also adjust the amount of your benefit to reflect this reality. To avoid this depreciation, some of them offer you the chance to cover the cost of inflation by paying slightly higher premiums.
Your current or former occupation might influence how much you pay in the form of premiums. For example, firefighters and policemen are at a higher risk of dying than accountants. So high-risk occupations might attract higher premiums. Former occupations, such as coal mining, might still affect your health even in retirement.
- Medical and Family History
Your medical history will play a role in determining your insurance premium rates. If you had some condition as a child that will likely affect your health in adulthood and your life expectancy, you would most likely pay more in premiums. The same applies to your family medical history.
Types of LTCI Policies
Because they share some features with other health coverage plans, it’s easy to get confused when shopping for an LTCI policy. Long-term care plans generally fall under two broad categories:
- Traditional Policies
These are somewhat straightforward in their requirements and terms of service. Under these policies, you’re expected to pay regular premiums until the policy ends. If you don’t receive benefits during the policy’s active period, you will not be reimbursed your premiums when it ends.
However, some allow your beneficiary to collect any excess premiums in the unfortunate event of your passing. The amount received will be arrived at by subtracting your total benefits from total premiums paid.
- Hybrid Policies
These types of plans are more flexible as far as the options you’re offered are concerned. There are many varieties of hybrid LTCI policies in the market.
Due to the high number of insurers and the policies they offer, you need expert advice to choose the plan that best suits your particular needs.
How Mom's Home Care Helps You Choose a Suitable LTCI Plan
We realize how hard it can be to pick an insurer that has your best interests at heart. There is a wide range of confusing options in the market. Since this decision has a direct bearing on your health, you need a guide that understands all the nitty-gritty of both the long-term industry and long-term care insurance.
Mom’s Home Care has a proven track record in both industries. As a licensed home care agency, we have provided quality long-term care services for over three decades. This has enabled us to gain valuable insights into what exactly seniors and other patients requiring long-term care need to lead a comfortable life.
Our professional relationship with insurance providers also gives us a unique ability to offer guidance on a range of LTCI options that are most beneficial to your health. We understand the process of applying for insurance, the paperwork required as well as how to take care of any potential conflicts that may arise between the insurer and policyholder.
Our relationship with all LTCI providers means we can give you a genuine, objective review of the insurance provider you might be interested in picking. It also puts us in a position to negotiate the most affordable premium rates possible on your behalf. This has an overall effect of reducing your financial burden.
Depending on the urgency of your insurance needs, we’ll also advise on which plan you will start benefiting from soonest. We also accurately take care of all the necessary paperwork you need to file insurance claims. These include assessments, daily care notes, invoices, and other relevant documents. This reduces the amount of time it takes to receive your benefits, which could have a significant effect on your health.
Interested in Long-term Care Insurance?
If you’re looking for a home care company who also understands the inner workings of the long-term care insurance industry, Mom’s Home Care is your best bet. As leaders in the non-medical care industry, we offer a wide range of long-term care services to our clients.
These include companionship, running errands, live in care, light housekeeping, medication reminders, and appointment scheduling. Our highly trained caregivers are renowned for giving the highest quality of care. Clients have praised us for our compassion, patience, empathy and understanding nature.
This coupled with our years of experience working with LTCI providers, mean we can offer you options that give you the best of both industries. At Mom’s Home Care, our priority is to advise you on LTCI solutions that are in your best interests. If you’re in Los Angeles and would like to discuss these solutions, do not hesitate to call our Los Angeles caregiver at 323-244-4789.