Chances of Needing Long Term Care

Contrary to most American's thinking, high percentages of seniors will need some form of long term care.

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The Risk of Long Term Care is Significant

Consider the following…

  • Consultants Conning & Company published a study indicating that almost two-thirds of those individual reaching age 65 will need long-term care at some time in their lives.¹
  • The Wall Street Journal, in a 2000 article, observed that “. . . a couple turning 65 [has] a 75 percent chance that one of them will need long-term care.”²

The chart below³ illustrates the risk of needing Long Term Care compared to the risks of an automobile accident or fire in a home, events that most people typically insure themselves for…

While the risk of an auto accident or home fire is less than 1%, the risk of a Long Term Care event is currently 50%.

And according to the table below4, 56% of individuals 85 and older can expect to require Long Term Care in a nursing home environment, and these figures are expected to increasing significantly in the years ahead…

¹ Conning & Company, Long-Term Care Insurance, Baby Boom or Bust (self-published, 1999).

² Wall Street Journal (June 2000).

³ National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, 1999.

4 C. Murtaugh, P. Kemper, B. Spillman, and B. Carlson, “The Amount, Distribution, and Timing of Lifetime Nursing Home Use,” Medical Care, 35 (3) (1997): 204 – 218.

4 Lewin-VHI, Long-Term Care: Knowing the Risk, Paying the Price (Washington, DC: Health Insurance Association, 1997).

4 Murtaugh, 204-218.

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