Quite a few of my clients came to me with the impression that long-term care is just about nursing homes. But it's a much broader topic than that. In fact, there are lots of options that give you the help you need with daily activities such as bathing, dressing, and eating.
Let's take a look at some of your options, presented in Genworth's annual long-term care survey. You might not need this information now, but understanding it will help you make a solid plan for your future retirement expenses.
Types of Long-Term Care: A Reference
|Location||Type of Care||National Median Cost (2017)||% Increase (2016-17)|
|Your home||Homemaker services (licensed)||$3,994/month||4.75%|
|Home health aide (licensed)||$4,099/month||6.17%|
|Your community||Adult day care||$1,517/month||2.94%|
|Facility||Assisted living (1 bedroom)||$3,750/month||3.36%|
|Nursing home (shared room)||$7,148/month||4.44%|
|Nursing home (private room)||$8,121/month||5.50%|
What Do These Types Provide?
The kind of care that's right for you will depend on your wishes, your health, and your doctor's advice.
- Homemaker Services (Licensed). A homemaker helps you do the around-the-house chores you can't quite handle on your own anymore. These include grocery shopping, other errands, laundry, house cleaning, and help preparing meals. Getting help with these tasks allows many seniors to stay in their homes.
- Home Health Aide (Licensed). A home health aide helps you with daily personal hygiene chores, including bathing, grooming, and moving around the house. This is another type of care that lets you stay in your home. This person can't help with serious medical problems, but they can help with minor tasks such as changing bandages or applying topical medications or salves.
- Adult Day Care. These daytime-only centers offer social interaction, meals, classes, counseling, exercise programs, and physical therapy. They're ideal for folks who have a family member helping them at home on nights and weekends (but who needs to work during the day).
- Assisted Living. These full-time residential communities offer the kind of care a home health aide can provide, and the kinds of activities of an adult day care. They can't provide the kind of intensive and constant care of a nursing home. They're meant for folks who can't live by themselves, but who don't need daily medical care.
- Nursing Home. This is for folks who need medical care around the clock. You can get skilled nursing 24 hours a day, unlike an assisted living community.
No matter which type of care you need, you'll probably need help paying for it. Medicare won't cover most long-term care, which is why insurance may be your best bet. To learn more, check out the quick video below: