Affordable Long-Term Care Solutions

 

Have you ever thought you might wake up in a hospital facing months or years of recovery? Then, suppose someone said it could have been shorter if you had an advocate with an Advance Directive helping you? Someone who would make quick decisions keeping treatments moving smoothly. Now, suppose instead you had an affordable long-term care solution ready? You can have a solution for emergencies.  With a little help.

Getting the right help is the beginning of a long-term care solution. Oh! But you thought all these costs and services were covered by Medicare? Well, Medicare covers medical costs – not care-giving or the related services you need while being cared for. Caregiving can be provided by family, friends, and other sources – some voluntary and some paid. Buying insurance to cover caregiving services is an important, but final step in the planning.

About Long-term Care

Let’s understand what long-term care is. There are many events that will put you into a care-giving situation. Events such as auto accidents, strokes, heart attacks to cancer and other diseases. Most events are unpredictable, even though your family history or profession may suggest some risks. And the kinds of care you may require are also unpredictable. Long term care is the combination of services needed to keep you healthy and preserve your assets while you are unable to care for yourself. So, you can only be prepared in a general, yet powerful way.

First Steps

First, care may require a few simple adjustments or cause major lifestyle changes. A few simple preparations can have substantial benefits. First which trustworthy person could you call to make medical and financial decisions for you? Would they be willing to accept that responsibility? If so, set up a Healthcare Power of Attorney and General Power of Attorney naming them as your representative. These documents should be prepared by an attorney because of the many issues involved. You want to grant enough power to provide adequate care without granting too much power. Your assets should be protected from possible abuse. An independent financial advisor can help with this.

First Insights

Next, sit down with your representative and a financial professional to go through a few scenes. These scenes should show what you want done and the resources you have for satisfactory care. Along the way, you’ will discover changes that are necessary to make your care possible. Insight– most care-giving is done in the home, not in nursing homes! Some of your resources are friends and family who are available to assist with chores and personal care. (There is more about this in a separate article)

Taking Inventory

Third, your analysis will indicate the kinds of services that you may need to pay for and the financial resources you have available. Your analysis may indicate when a change of residence will be needed. How will this change your financial picture and your lifestyle?  Are you feeling worried or relieved at this point? This is where a financial professional like me becomes invaluable. We can help you create affordable long-term care solutions for adequate care.

Your Support Team

Let’s talk about some important issues. The world birthrate is dropping. Therefore, the number of healthy, trustworthy people available to care for others, especially seniors, will decline. Is there a solution? Yes – improved healthfulness. American Medicare is shifting the emphasis to prevention and healthfulness. At-home health screenings and care, exercise programs, nutritional assistance and more are being added to Medicare Advantage plans. Insurers are creating plans with varying benefit combinations to provide a tailored solution for you. Our mutual survival may depend on developing trustworthy relationships with people who will come to each others aid. There are many charitable groups you can join and develop great relationships.

Create the Money

Now, let us talk about the sources of money that may be available for you. You may suspect I’m heading toward traditional long-term care insurance. That is only one of many sources of funds, each with its unique characteristics. Besides traditional long-term care insurance there are 1) Critical-Illness Insurance plans, 2) Annuities and Life Insurance with special riders, and 3) VA pensions for example. A financial professional knows how each of these works and how to weave them into a plan for you. This is when thoughtful planning balances affordability and possibilities. Is it possible to keep your home if you must leave for special treatment? Is it possible to get transportation if you cannot drive yourself? Again, a careful review will reveal possibilities! (Coming:  another two articles; financial resources explained, and strategies for life changes)

This sounds like a lot of work. It can be. However, being prepared to make that single call to your advocate takes a huge burden off your shoulders!

I know. I have made that call.

You can start your plan today. Just call me for an initial consultation.

 

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