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Top Reasons People Require Long-Term Care

These are the most common reasons people need care even though there are many other medical conditions causing others to need long-term care services.

Fractured bones or head injuries, commonly caused by falls.

Recovering from an illness, injury, or surgery

Rehabilitation following a hospital stay

Alzheimer’s disease and dementia

Multiple Sclerosis (MS)

Parkinson’s Disease

Heart Disease


Other chronic or terminal medical conditions

Obesity in Americans is one of the fastest growing reasons people need care.

Truth or Consequences
What Is Your Chance of Needing Long-Term Care In The Future?

The internet provides many statistics by the government and independent researchers whether you will need long-term care in the future.

You see this figure everywhere and even on my website.

70% of people will need long-term care services after the age of 65. 


However, this number based on government studies may be accurate, but the definition for long-term care is quite encompassing, and not always relevant to the actual percentage of people over age 65 who will need assistance with at least a couple of activities of daily living, such as eating, dressing, or bathing with the possibility of even a higher level of care.

For example, someone spending 10 days recovering in a rehabilitation or skilled nursing facility following a hospital stay would be considered by the government as having “needed long-term care.”  Yet they would not meet the standard 90-day waiting period and qualify for long-term care insurance benefits.

Several statistics arrive at the conclusion

that the percentage might fall between 50–70%.


Needing long-term care services is a real risk, and if you own a long-term care insured solution with a 50/50 likelihood you’ll use your policy is a high probability event to the insurance company.  This is why long-term care insurance is not inexpensive, but then again the cost of paying for long-term care services is not inexpensive either.

The percentages may be more or less depending on younger ages verse older ages and the waiting period selected before receiving benefits.

Critics will argue that most owners of long-term care insurance will receive no benefits assuming the standard 90-day waiting period as some will recover and some will die.

Who wants to play those odds, when the fact is that many people who need long-term care require it for at least a year or two?

Note: Traditional stand-alone long-term care insured solutions offer a 0 day waiting period for home care services and linked or hybrid life insurance solutions will provide a death benefit.  Plus peace-of-mind comes with every policy.


Let’s look at RISK factors for NEEDING CARE in the future. 


Your chances of needing long-term care services are either going to be zero (0%), you won’t need it, or 100%, you will need it.  Though the odds are significantly greater that you will need care rather than winning the lottery!

For many, the risk of needing care is an easy issue to ignore and therefore just as easy to avoid having THE IMPORTANT conversation.  For more info see “The Must Have Conversation And The Easiest One To Put Off Until It Becomes Too Late.”  People are generally aware that the possibility of needing long-term care at some point exists, but are unwilling to acknowledge they might need protection for that possibility.  In turn, they will just take care of it at the time when the need arises.

Here are some questions and thoughts regarding the probability of needing care in the future.

We all know family and friends who required care.

An accident or chronic illness that causes a disability are statistical probabilities requiring long-term care services and can occur regardless of age.

What ages did your parents live to and did they require long-term care services?

What are your own personal risk factors?

Our health care system has many issues and may be expensive, but one thing it does very well is keeping you alive at a considerable cost.  Medical conditions that used to cause death are treated now creating chronic conditions requiring care services in the future.

Longevity — live a long life (frailty) and chances are substantially increased you will require long-term care services.  It is not a matter of if you will need care, but when and for how long?  The other fact that women outlive men also creates a greater need for care.

When Does A Majority Of Care Or Insurance Claims Occur?

The need for care or a claim can occur at any time, but the majority of claims for men and women happen at 80 + years of age reports the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance Claimant Study.  According to AALTC research most long-term care insurance claims run (23%) between ages 70 – 79 with over two thirds (67%) starting after age 80.



Every 66 second someone the United States develops Alzheimer’s.
1 in 3 seniors dies with some form of dementia.
When the first wave of baby boomers reached age 85 (in 2031), it is projected that more than 3 million people age 85 and older will have Alzheimer’s.
By 2050, it’s estimated there will be as many as 16 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s.
One-third of Americans over age 85 are afflicted with the illness.
Typical life expectancy after an Alzheimer’s diagnosis is 4-to-8 years.


In 2017, Alzheimer’s cost the United States $259 billion.

By 2050, costs associated with dementia could be as much as $1.1 trillion.  


2010 – Ages 65+:  4.7 Million

2020 – Ages 65+:  5.8 Million

2030 – Ages 65+:  8.4 Million

2040 – Ages 65+:  11.6 Million

2050 – Ages 65+:  13.8 Million

Alzheimer's on the white background, red illustration


Nearly one-fourth of Alzheimer’s and dementia caregivers are “sandwich generation”

Caregivers – caring for both someone with the disease and a child or grandchild.

More than 40% of family caregivers report that the emotional stress of their role is high or very high. 

More than 1 in 6 Alzheimer’s and dementia caregivers had to quit work entirely either to become a caregiver in the first place or because their caregiving duties became too burdensome. 

74% of caregivers of people with Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias reported that they were “somewhat concerned” to “very concerned” about maintaining their own health since becoming a caregiver.

SOURCES:  Centers for Disease Control / 2017 Alzheimer’s Disease Facts and Figures / World Alzheimer’s Report


How Long On Average Do People Require Long-Term Care Services?

On average between 2.5 to 3 years.  Does anyone know if you will need care below the industry average or for a longer period of time lasting 4 or 5 years?  What about Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s could require care up to 10 years or longer, e.g., Ronald Reagan (Alzheimer’s) Michael J. Fox or Muhammad Ali (Parkinson’s)?

Remember most long-term care is actually received at home.  However, it is not uncommon for someone to receive care at home for several months to a couple years, followed by a couple years in an assisted living facility or additional time spent in a skilled nursing facility.  It depends on the medical condition, types of care required, as well as one’s personal and family situation.  It’s important to plan for a variety of potential scenarios.

Dollar Swimming Pool

Remember with a long-term care insured solution and upon approval, you’re creating a large pool of money to provide for all levels of care, including home, assisted living and nursing home.


Consider in 2017, Fidelity Investments estimated a healthy, 65-year-old couple retiring this year will need $275,000 to cover their health-care costs for Medicare Parts A, B, and D, Medicare Supplement and Drug coverage premiums – and does not include other health expenses such as over-the-counter medications, dental, hearing, or visions costs.  In 2016, the estimate was $260,000.

This is a reality check spent on healthcare related costs not including expenses for long-term care services during the same retirement years.

For more info see “What Can A Long-Term Care Insured Solution Do For You Today?”

Is planning with a long-term care insured solution a better financial move?  I’d rather say, “isn’t it smarter to do a little planning because it’s easier to budget a premium than an unknown expense, and when you consider all the other problems faced when long-term planning is not considered or implemented.  Hope is simply not the best strategy!”

Marc Maretsky Personal Insurance Services based in Beverly Hills, serves all of California and the United States.  I help my clients acquire life, disability, long-term care, and critical illness insured solutions, as well as enroll them into Medicare when eligible.

“No matter how fast technology changes our world and everything around us.  I believe the personal touch and a human voice are more important than ever.”

The purpose of MY WEBSITE is to provide insurance concepts and ideas of interest to my clients, favorable introductions, other professionals or anyone else who may be viewing this information.  The content is general in nature and subject to change.  It should not be considered complete advice on any company, product or ideas described.  Your appropriate attorney, CPA or tax advisor should be consulted for legal or tax reasons regarding your personal situation.

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