Financial Planner: Preparing for long term care


Tim Moomey, with the FSB Investment Center, said a large number of people will need long term care at some point in their life.

He talked with NTV about ways to prepare.

"According to the National Clearinghouse for Long Term Care Information, which is a part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, about 70 percent of individuals over age 65 will require at least some type of long-term care services during their lifetime. Over 40 percent will need care in a nursing home for some period of time. Factors that increase your risk of needing long-term care are:

  • Age - The risk generally increases as you get older.
  • Marital Status - Single people are more likely to need care from a paid provider.
  • Gender - Women are at a higher risk than men, primarily because they tend to live longer.
  • Lifestyle - Poor diet and exercise habits can increase your risk.
  • Health and Family History - also impact your risk.

"It is difficult to predict how much or what type of care any one person might need. Again, according to the National Clearinghouse for Long Term Care Information, on average, someone age 65 today will need some long-term care services for three years. Service and support needs vary from one person to the next and often change over time. Women need care for longer (on average 3.7 years) than do men (on average 2.2 years). While about one-third of today's 65-year-olds may never need long-term care services, 20 percent of them will need care for more than five years.

"Many people who need long-term care develop the need for care gradually. They may begin only needing help a few times a week, gradually moving to needing more and more help. Some people need long-term care in a facility for a relatively short period of time while they are recovering from a sudden illness or injury, and then may be able to be cared for at home. Others may need long-term care services on an on-going basis, for example someone who is disabled from a severe stroke. Some people may need to move to a nursing home or other type of facility-based setting for more extensive care or supervision if their needs can no longer be met at home."

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