Nearly 4 in 10 Americans age 65 and over – 37 percent – say they haven’t had conversations with anyone about preparing for their possible need of long-term care (LTC).
The proportion was similar to American adults overall, 38 percent of whom said they hadn’t had such conversations.
A recent survey conducted online by The Harris Poll on behalf of OneAmerica® asked 2,006 adults age 18 and over1 whether they’d had conversations with a family member, spouse or partner, friend, health care professional, financial planner, insurance agent, attorney, clergy member, accountant or someone else about preparing for their possible need of LTC.
62 percent of Americans say they have had these conversations, with adults age 65 and older more likely than younger adults (18-64) to have talked to their spouse/partner (38% vs. 27%) and/or a financial planner (17% vs. 7%). Interestingly, 65 percent of adults age 18-34 say they have had conversations about their possible LTC needs.
Many Americans turning 65 today – 70 percent – can expect to have an LTC need at some point in their lifetimes, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services2. For about 20 percent of Americans, LTC will be needed for longer than 5 years, due to conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, Parkinson’s disease, and other chronic conditions.
Planning ahead for the possibility of LTC can ensure assets are best positioned for any need that arises, and can reduce the burden on family members and loved ones when the time comes.
Americans with annual household incomes of $100K or more are more likely to say they’ve had conversations about LTC than those in lower income households, with 70 percent of those in $100k or higher households saying they’ve talked with someone compared with only 56% of those whose annual household income is less than $75K. Still, only 15 percent of those with annual household incomes of $100K or more say they’ve had such conversations with a financial planner, and 10 percent with an insurance agent.
For individuals and financial professionals, it’s important to start those conversations, said Tracey Edgar, vice president of sales, Care Solutions, at OneAmerica.
“Regardless of income, it’s important to have conversations about the possibility of long-term care,” said Edgar. “Asset-based LTC protection is a solution that may be more within reach than people realize, especially if they’re nearing retirement and have assets to reposition. And everyone can benefit from understanding each others’ wishes and expectations for care.”
OneAmerica offers asset-based LTC solutions, which can help protect retirement income from the drain of unexpected expenses, while providing a death benefit if LTC benefits aren’t fully used. With asset-based LTC protection, premiums are guaranteed, and policies come with a return-of-premium guarantee in case of cancellation.*