No one wants to think about spending their golden years in a nursing home or with round-the-clock nursing assistance for basic self-care tasks, such as eating, dressing, bathing and using the bathroom. Yet, according to AARP, approximately 52 percent of Americans turning 65 this year will require some sort of long-term care services and support (LTCSS) during their remaining years, with women making up a disproportionate share of LTCSS users.
First, it is important to clarify that the need for long-term care is not limited to individuals who are very old and frail or those living with chronic disease or cognitive impairments, such as dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Rather, as we age, the probability that we will develop long-term physical impairments increases, and the more likely we will have difficulties managing every-day activities on our own. How we will deal with those struggles and pay for the care we need is a challenge that women, in particular, must plan for far in advance of their 65th birthdays.
As mothers, wives and daughters, women tend to be the primary caregivers for their family members. The time they spend over their lifetimes worrying and caring for others often comes at a fault: they forget to consider and plan for taking care of themselves in their times of need. To address this problem and ensure qualified care over the course of their lifetimes, women must spend some time and effort establishing a safety net for their future.
Long-term care can be quite expensive, with annual national median costs ranging from more than $50,000 for a home health aide providing non-medical care in 2019 to more than $100,000 for a room is a nursing home. Not only can these prices vary based on level of services and location where services are provided, but one can also expect them to continue to rise at a five-year annual growth rate of more than 3 percent. These costs can be especially challenging for women, who are more likely to outlive their male spouses and be left with the responsibility of paying for their own care, often after serving as primary caregiver to a spouse. Moreover, contrary to popular belief, a significant portion of the costs for extended long-term care is not covered by Medicare.
Long-term care insurance has been and continues to be a valuable tool to help women afford the rising costs of care that they can expect during their retirement years. However, these policies may not be right for everyone. It is important for women to address these topics with early in their lives so that they can plan appropriately to ensure that they will receive the care they will need in the future without becoming a physical or financial burden to their family members. By seeking the assistance of qualified financial advisors, women can gain a better understanding of all the options available to them and the different strategies they can employ before retirement to enjoy their golden years in the style and manner they want for themselves.
About the Author: Olga Ismail is a retirement plan consultant in the Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., office of Provenance Wealth Advisors (PWA), an Independent Registered Investment Advisor affiliated with Berkowitz Pollack Brant Advisors + CPAs, and a registered representative with Raymond James Financial Services. For more information, call (954) 712-8888 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Provenance Wealth Advisors (PWA), 515 E. Las Olas Blvd., Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33301 (954) 712-8888.
Olga Ismail is a registered representative of and offers securities through Raymond James Financial Services, Inc., Member FINRA/SIPC. Raymond James is not affiliated with and does not endorse the opinions or services of Berkowitz Pollack Brant Advisors and Accountants. PWA is not a registered broker/dealer and is independent of Raymond James Financial Services. Investment Advisory Services offered through Raymond James Financial Services Advisors, Inc., and Provenance Wealth Advisors.
This material is being provided for information purposes only and is not a complete description, nor is it a recommendation. Any opinions are those of PWA and not necessarily those of Raymond James. You should discuss any tax or legal matters with the appropriate professional. The information contained in this report has been obtained from sources considered to be reliable, but Raymond James does not guarantee that the foregoing material is accurate or complete.
Long-Term Care insurance policies have exclusions and/or limitations. The cost and availability of Long-Term Care insurance depends on factors such as age, health, and the type and amount of insurance purchased. As with most financial decisions, there are expenses associated with the purchase of Long-Term Care insurance. Guarantees are based on the claims paying ability of the insurance company.