Learn about senior care insurance. Seniorly explains that although few people take advantage of it, long-term care insurance can make a big difference.
If your elder loved one recently fell ill or experienced an injury, then you might know how valuable respite care can be. By providing them with specialized services and round-the-clock attention, respite care can turn a difficult situation into a manageable one and help your loved one regain their health. However, it can also be expensive, particularly when your loved one requires several months of care. This is why senior care insurance (or long-term care insurance) can pay off in the long run by covering added medical care expenses.
Understanding this type of coverage and considering your options beforehand will help make sure you’re not stuck trying to figure out how to pay expenses at the last minute.
Long-term care insurance (LTC or LTCI) for seniors is insurance that will cover a variety of expenses associated with long-term stays, such as at a hospital, nursing home or a respite center. Long-term care insurance generally covers additional expenses not covered by Medicare or Medicaid and can be used as a supplemental insurance for seniors.
Although it is not a widely used type of insurance policy (only 8 percent of Americans currently purchase it), a LTCI policy can help protect against the rising costs of long-term care and keep you from being burdened with any unexpected expenses.
Whether or not you qualify for a LTCI policy will depend on your health, age and current living situation. In general, the younger and healthier you are, the more likely you will be able to purchase an inexpensive policy. If you have a pre-existing health condition, are not in good health or are at an at-risk age (sometimes the cutoff for long-term care insurance is 75), you may either not qualify for long-term care insurance or your rates will increase.
The following are some commons reasons why your loved one may be unable to purchase long-term care insurance:
Whether you are interested in purchasing long-term care insurance for respite care or simply to be safe, the following are some important factors worth considering when evaluating term care insurance policies.
When considering the right senior care insurance to purchase, understanding the differences between short-term and long-term care insurance is helpful.
Short-term care insurance (STCI) for seniors typically provides coverage for 1-year or less. There are some major differences in terms of an older cutoff age for short-term care insurance and no medical exam to be approved for coverage. Also, most long-term care insurance includes an “elimination period” where benefits may not be paid out for 90 days where short-term care typically pays benefits immediately.
Here are some key differences between short-term and long-term care insurance for seniors:
|Long-term Care Insurance||Short-term Care Insurance|
|Coverage Over 1 Year||X|
|Elimination Period of Benefits||X|
|Required Medical Exam||X||X|
There are a variety of long-term senior care insurance companies on both the federal, state and local levels. Additionally, many seniors opt to carry private insurance plans for LTCI.
Here are some of the major long-term care insurance providers:
Additionally, consider the following resources to find a policy that fits your needs:
Another option is the ARCH National Respite Network, which has a resource for where you can find information about state funding sources for both caregivers and seniors.
Seniorly’s Senior Living experts created a comprehensive handbook to help people age happily while ensuring they love where they live. Enter your email address below to receive your copy and learn more about Healthy Aging and Senior Living.*