Medicare vs. long-term care insurance

Medicare vs. long-term care insurance

Have you factored long-term care into your retirement planning? If you just have Medicare, don’t expect it to cover long-term care. Medicare covers the following:

  1. Nursing facility for recovery: Your stay at a facility is covered after you are in the hospital for a few days. Once you are recovered, Medicare stops paying for your stay.
  2. Short-term home health care: If you are temporarily homebound by an affliction or injury, then Medicare will pay for someone to assist in your care for up to 35 hours per week.
  3. Hospice: Medicare covers the costs that make you comfortable if you are in the last stage of a terminal illness.

Medicare does not cover long-term custodial care such as in-home care, in which the patient remains at home and is visited by caregivers to assist with bathing and other day-to-day tasks, nor does it pay for assisted living, in which nursing home residents have apartment-like living quarters.  To pay for those options, many people rely on long-term care insurance. To find out more, check out this Do You Need Long-Term Care Insurance? infographic from Angie's List.

For custodial care, you must purchase a different policy that specializes in that kind of protection. These policies can be complicated and hard to navigate around, so the earlier you start your long-term care insurance search, the better. A valuable long-term care policy should coved the following:

  1. Home Care: Costs for you to be able to stay in your home, get the care you need, and have the proper modifications made to your home will all be covered by your long-term care policy.
  2. Assisted Living: If you end up needing the care provided by an assisted living facility, then those costs will be covered with a consistent stay.

When you are shopping for a long-term care policy, make sure you are following the know the steps to searching for insurance. Doing your research and starting at the right age -- experts say 45 -- can help you get the cheapest premium possible. If your family has a history of health problems, then that is yet another reason to get a head start on this process. Another way to save time and stress is to find one of the nursing homes in Dallas with top rating froms Angie's List member early on, since you will be trusting them with your care. Getting this taken care of efficiently can help you secure a future that is protected and free of worry.

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Should your retirement prep include long-term care insurance?

Even if you are still in your '40s maybe it’s time to start thinking about life after retirement. Where will you live? Who will care for you? Get the truth about purchasing long-term care insurance, and decide if it is a viable option for you.


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