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How can families prepare for long-term care costs?
Unfortunately, individuals or their families bear most of the costs. Medicare doesn’t cover much. Saving for retirement is important, but families should also save for long-term medical expenses.
You can start doing this with a Health Savings Account, which shelters funds in a tax-free environment until age 65.
Most get help from their spouses, children, or siblings.
Other Ways to Pay
- Reverse mortgages for seniors
- Long-term insurance and life insurance policies
- Immediate annuities and deferred long-term care annuities
- Social Security Disability Income (SSDI) for workers under age 65
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Tax deductions and credits, such as the Household and Dependent Care Credit.
- Collect all financial and legal documents. Make sure to review the following:
- Bank and brokerage accounts
- Deeds, mortgage papers, or ownership statements
- Medical and durable powers of attorney
- Monthly bills and debt
- Pension and other retirement benefit summaries
- Social Security payment information
- Stock and bond certificates
Other Government Programs
- The Older Americans Act (OAA) assists with services such as meal and nutrition support, preventive health services, caregiver support, senior employment, and elder abuse prevention. You must be 60 and older to be elgible and meet low-income levels.
- Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE): Several states offer this Medicare option that provides services and care to those who would otherwise need nursing home care. PACE covers medical, social service, and long-term care costs that meet specific requirements. There may be a monthly charge. Learn more.
- Veterans may be able to receive long-term care or at-home care through The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). If eligible, check with the VA or get in touch with the VA medical center nearest you. To learn more call 1-877-222-8387, or visit the Veterans Health Administration or the Veterans Affairs Caregiver Support page.