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Long Term Care FAQs


  1. What is long term care?
  2. Is long term care only provided in nursing homes?
  3. Is long term care just for the elderly?
  4. What does long term care cost?
  5. Will Medicare or major medical insurance cover long term care costs?
  6. How will I pay for long term care if I need it?

  1. What is long term care?

    Long term care provides certain personal care services when you need help to take care of yourself for an extended period of time. Care can range from simple home care to intensive nursing home care. Some common conditions that might create a need for long term care services include:

    • Alzheimer’s Disease
    • Parkinson’s Disease
    • Cancer
    • Stroke
    • Arthritis
    • Diabetes
    • Serious injury from a vehicle or sporting accident

  2. Is long term care only provided in nursing homes?

    Care doesn’t have to be given just in a nursing home. It can be provided in a number of other places, including:

    • Your home
    • An adult day care facility
    • An assisted living facility
    • An Alzheimer’s unit
    • A hospice unit

  3. Is long term care just for the elderly?

    Many people think long term care is just for the elderly, but accidents and illnesses can happen at any age, and young people may require long term care services too. In fact, 40 percent of people currently receiving long term care are adults 18 to 64 years old.* 

    *U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2008 (www.longtermcare.gov External Link)


  4. What does long term care cost?

    Long term care services can be very expensive. Consider these national averages from 2006*:

    • The average cost for a semi-private room in a nursing home was $186 per day ($68,000 per year).
    • The cost for a Home Health Aide was $346 per week ($18,000 per year for periodic personal care from a Home Health Aide three times a week).

    And long term care costs rise at the rate of about 4 percent per year**, so long term care will continue to get more expensive over time.

    *U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2008 (www.longtermcare.gov External Link)
    **U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Consumer Price Index Detailed Report, September 2009


  5. Will Medicare or major medical insurance cover long term care costs?

    Medicare will  cover the first 100 days of care in a nursing home if certain conditions are met, and it also provides some limited coverage for skilled home care. However, in general, Medicare and major medical insurance plans do not cover most long term care expenses.


  6. How will I pay for long term care if I need it?

    If you’re not sure you’ll be able to afford long term care services, then purchasing long term care insurance should be part of your financial security strategy. It can provide the coverage you need for services not covered by Medicare or major medical insurance, and it can help protect the savings and assets you have worked a lifetime to accumulate.


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Policies issued by COUNTRY Life Insurance Company®, Bloomington, IL. Coverage not available in all states. Read our full disclaimer.

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