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|Other Aging News…
Scientists continue to examine theories that may hold the keys to longevity, according to an article in The New York Times.
Testing for Driving Safety
Behind-the-wheel driving tests in New Hampshire help to weed out aging drivers whose driving skills have deteriorated to unsafe levels, according to an article in The Boston Globe.
Cutting Repeat Hospital Trips
Follow-up efforts and continued vigilance by healthcare professionals can help reduce costly hospital readmissions for older adults, according to a recent article in The Wall Street Journal.
Work Longer, Stay Sharper
Several factors attract older adults to remain longer in the U.S. workforce, according to an article in The Boston Globe.
As life spans and healthcare costs increase, expenses associated with long-term care understandably continue to focus older adults’ concerns on how they’ll manage medical expenses, particularly if those expenses extend over a period of years. From recently compiled statistics, it appears that planning certainly pays off.
A study conducted by the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance based in Westlake Village, CA, indicates that the largest claims to date have surpassed the $1 million mark, and one in 10 claims begins before the subscriber reaches the age of 70. Some 400,000 individuals purchased long-term care insurance protection in 2008. Of those, 84% were younger than the age of 65. In fact, in 2008, 53% of individual buyers were between the ages of 55 and 64 compared with 50% in the previous year.
Admittedly, long-term care insurance isn’t for everyone. But for those whose medical and financial circumstances find it offers a viable solution, it creates welcome peace of mind. And it appears buyers recognize the importance of purchasing at earlier ages when premiums are more palatable than they would be for policies purchased later in life.
Boomers are exploring the options available for their future lifestyles and healthcare. Long-term care insurance may find a place in their plans and preparation. Of course, individual circumstances and preferences will dictate their decisions.
We welcome your comments at AWeditor@gvpub.com. Visit Aging Well’s enhanced and improved Web site at www.agingwellmag.com for news, articles, and information important to professionals in the field of aging. Subscribe to Aging Well.
— Barbara Worthington, editor
|Aging’s Safety Net
By Barbara Worthington
As Americans’ life expectancy continues to increase, it’s nearly impossible to keep thoughts of our own prospects for frailty and dependence from crossing our minds. Debilitating diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular conditions, and Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases often require intensive and specialized care. And long-term care for older adults with mental or physical disabilities comes with a hefty price tag. How can we pay for personalized care that can extend for years or even decades?
Many older adults mistakenly believe that Medicare will serve as a safety net if and when long-term care becomes a necessity. However, Medicare covers only a limited amount of long-term care and typically pays for little or no home healthcare and no assisted living care.
An alternative whose evolution mirrors the lifestyles and needs of the aging baby boomer demographic is long-term care insurance. Although less than 10% of the U.S. population currently subscribes to long-term care insurance, according to Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger, its product improvements and enhancements contribute to continuing growth.
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Technology at Home: Innovations for Aging in Place
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|Ask the Expert
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