Long-Term Health Care: 4 Things You Should Know
At some point, you’re going to need help doing basic daily activities you may take for granted. Even if it seems like a distant reality, the day you’ll need long term health care will eventually arrive, and you better start planning for it now.
Here are 4 things you need to know.
1. It is inevitable. Seven out of ten people older than 65 will need custodial care in doing their day-to-day tasks, according to recent statistics. Long-term care becomes necessary when a person needs help with at least two basic tasks such as eating or taking a bath.
2. It can be expensive. A lot of people take for granted the need to plan their long term care expenses, believing that this will be taken care of by the government. This, however, is not always true. Living in a semi-private nursing home may cost you around $73,000 each year, according to 2012 data. For private nursing homes, it may go up to around $81,000. These prices will most likely increase in the near future. We’ve included an infographic that illustrates the cost of long term care in BC.
3. Preparing for it is best thing you can do for yourself before you retire. Through a long-term health care insurance policy, you can start preparing for the kind of long-term care you will need, depending on your needs and lifestyle. Aside from getting your other retirement benefits in order, an insurance plan that includes assisted care after retirement means less worries in the future. Think of it as an investment for your own peace of mind, as well as your loved ones’.
4. There is no better time to start than NOW. The sooner you start, the more you can maximize a long-term care insurance policy. The premiums you pay will depend on a few factors:
- How old you are
- Your current health status
- How long you think you’ll need coverage
- How much you want to protect yourself from inflation.
With inflation protection, the value of your benefits can even increase over time. With a 5-percent inflation protection in place, for example, the value of your insurance benefits will increase by 5 percent as well.
While your family may be there to also support your needs, it is important to think about how you’ll live the rest of your years after without breaking the bank or financially burdening loved ones. Think about how old you think you’ll be when you need assisted care, or what financial safety nets you have in place in case of disability.
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