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Long-term health care is probably the last thing on your mind. After all, you will not need way until retirement age of sixty-five. But the latest medical and financial data may leave you thinking twice.

Statistics show that up to seventy percent of people sixty-five years old and above will need long-term care. What exactly is it? Long-term care insurance provides custodial care to elderly or disabled individuals who can no longer perform basic daily activities by themselves. Long-term care kicks in when a person will need help with at least two basic functions like eating and bathing. It might be difficult to think this will happen to you, but forty-two percent of people aged sixty-five and above have reported the limited ability to take on daily tasks by themselves.

It is safe to say that the chances are high you will need long-term care. The decision to invest for your future must include a plan for assisted care after retirement, especially with the rising rates of assisted living and nursing homes.

The Cost of Long-Term Health Care Insurance

In 2012, the annual median cost of living in a semi-private nursing home was $73,000 USD. It rises to $81,030 per year for private nursing homes. Multiply that by how many years you can possibly need long-term care, and that is how much you have to prepare for to live your golden days.

The premium of long-term health care depends on your age and health, the daily benefit amount you choose, the length of coverage you foresee, and the level of inflation protection. For example, a five percent compound inflation protection means that your benefits will increase in value by five percent each year

According to the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance, a fifty-five year old single adult can expect to pay a premium of $2,065 USD per year for $160,000 USD in benefits. But with inflation protection, the amount of benefits will increase to about $300,000 USD by the time the person is eighty years old.

Investing In Yourself

Investing in long-term health care insurance is a means of taking care of your self. Some people shrug this concept off, thinking that Medicare will pay for their nursing home stay, but this is not the case.

Medicare will only pay for the first twenty days of your nursing home stay. The rest of the costs are up to you.

With these in mind, it is time to consider your plans for the future. When the time comes, how much family support do you foresee? At what age do you think you will need assisted care? What is your backup plan should you become disabled. The next step after thinking ahead is to make your wise move.