If you’re under 55, it’s unlikely. Even over 55, only a small percentage of the population will need long-term care before they are in their 70s or 80s.
However, according to research published in the journal Inquiry by Kemper, Komisar, and Alecxih, most people who turn 65 in 2005 will, in their lifetime, need some level of long-term care.
|LTC need:||None||Some||1 year or less||1-2 years||2-5 years||More than 5 years|
Columns 3 through 6 show the distribution of people in column 2. Note that this study defines LTC need as having one or more ADL limitations, four IADL limitations, or using formal LTC services other than post-acute care under Medicare. As such, it indicates somewhat greater usage of LTC services than most long-term care insurance policies would pay for.
Recent trends suggest that 50 percent or more of the people who might have gone into a nursing home for long-term care will in the future go into an assisted living facility. Assisted living facilities generally cost less than nursing homes. For example, in mid-2005, a MetLife Mature Market Institute survey found a national average daily cost of assisted living facilities of $100, with a range from $55 to $155 across the U.S.
The good news is that people are living healthier longer—that, in other words, the need for long-term care is diminishing and, when it occurs, the onset of need for long-term care is, on average, occurring later and later in life and starting closer to death (so that future periods of long-term care needs may be shorter than at present). In part, this is due to the adoption of better prevention strategies and better medical practices. Even so, if you do need long-term care services, they can be expensive.
The information in this article was obtained from Insurance Information Institute and is not all inclusive regarding the subject matter. This content is offered for educational purposes only and does not represent contractual agreements, nor is it intended to replace manuals or instructions provided by the manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional. The definitions, terms and coverage in a given policy may be different than those suggested here and such policy will be governed by the language contained therein. No warranty or appropriateness for a specific purpose is expressed or implied.