ong-Term are Is merica’sTrue Health are risis
n the next decade, the healthy lifestyles that will enable mil-lions of Americans to live well beyond age 100 may also posethe greatest threat to their financial security, retirement, andlegacy. Our biggest challenge in the field of health care will be tophysically and psychologically care for those who have managedto live well beyond today’s life expectancy.It has been estimated that the number of people requiringlong-term care will double in the next three decades. This meansthat more than 28 million people could need help with thebasic activities of daily living, or some level of supervision dueto memory loss. Tasks such as getting dressed, which are nowperformed with ease by most, will require the assistance ofothers. Unable to live independently, these large numbers of peoplerequiring care will create tremendous demand for new healthcare solutions in the first half of the twenty-first century. This newchallenge—accommodating those needing long-term care—willdwarf our current problems regarding the financing of physicianand hospital care.Who will provide this care? Where will the care take place? Whowill pay the bills? The long-term care industry is working to find theanswers to many of these questions. Soon, planning ahead for long-term care will become as common as creating a will.One option for paying for care is long-term care insurance. Wedevote several chapters of this book to a discussion of this option.If you haven’t already purchased long-term care insurance, weencourage you to wait the few hours it will take to read this book.After doing so, you should then consult with an
rather than an insurance agent. They will assist you inplanning ahead for long-term care by guiding you to resourcesand information that help you understand your options within thecontext of your personal and financial objectives.