Planning for long-term care (AARP Magazine article and PDF webinar)

There’s an article in the March/April 2010 issue of the AARP Magazine about the extreme measures some have resorted to in order to provide long-term care to their loved ones. One of those extreme measures is getting a divorce so that the spouse in need of care qualifies for Medicaid. 

You can find a link to the article here: 

Here are some statistics given in the article: 

“Americans who live to 65 have a 40 percent chance of entering a nursing home during their lifetime. The average stay lasts 2.5 years and costs about $175,000. In 2008, the most recent year for which numbers are available, 9 million older people required long-term care. That number is expected to reach 12 million by 2020 as the boomer population ages. Currently, only about 8 million Americans have private long-term-care insurance, leaving the government to underwrite care at an enormous cost to taxpayers.” 

That ties in with a Parkinson’s Disease Foundation webinar I listened to last month. You can find the archived version online here:

Legal Issues: Planning Ahead When You are Living with Parkinson’s 

January 13, 2010 
Faculty: Janna Dutton, J.D., Eldercare Attorney, Janna Dutton & Associates 

Ms. Dutton made the point that we should all — healthy or not — plan our own long-term care. Much better to plan your own care than to have this hard work foisted on to a family member, especially if that’s a family member that you don’t see eye-to-eye with on all aspects of your treatment wishes. She said that we should each formulate our own care plan, exploring how we’ll pay for care, health insurance, etc. As part of that, we need to know what home health aides cost, the monthly cost of an assisted living facility, and the daily cost of a skilled nursing facility in our local area.