A recent proposal put forth by Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett includes the creation of a state appointed long term care commission to establish an integrated long term care system.
The plan, called “Healthy Pennsylvania”, was introduced by Governor Tom Corbett two weeks ago and has sparked controversy amidst already heated public debates about health care and long term care.
Brian Duke, the Pennsylvania Secretary of Aging, wrote an article in the Philly Burbs today in support of the new plan. Focusing on the elderly population in the state, Duke emphasizes the importance of “Healthy Pennsylvania” as he lays out the mechanics of the state’s hypothetical long term care commission. He ensures that members would hear from doctors, patients, and industry experts, and explains why it’s so important to listen, something he says the “government doesn’t do often enough”.
Help Senior Population
Pennsylvania is home to a large senior population, which according to the U.S. Census Bureau, makes up approximately 16% of the state population, compared to the national average of 13.7%. The annual Genworth Cost of Care Survey places the cost of a private room in a nursing home costs, on average, at more than $104,000 annually.
As aging-in-place becomes more common, nursing homes are no longer considered the “norm”, but even a room in an assisted living facility in Pennsylvania costs an average of $38,100 a year. Preparing for these costs is no easy task, and it requires some serious thought and consideration.
Chance of Success
Though planning for your future long term care needs is important, it’s hard to say whether another commission will shed any new light on the subject. The federal Commission on Long Term Care just concluded their meetings this month and though they presented a final report to Congress and the public, the issue of financing remains largely unsolved due to its complexities and far reaching implications.
Whether the proposal succeeds or not is hard to predict; it must first be approved by the Obama administration before it can be implemented. Regardless of whether the plan goes into effect, though, it should act as yet another signal of the importance of planning for long term care.
Many states, including Pennsylvania, already have partnership programs in place to help residents plan for the potentially devastating cost of long term care. States partner with private insurers to offer policyholders a possible Medicaid spend down waiver, should they ever exhaust their policy and require more benefits. Pennsylvania’s Long Term Care Partnership was signed into law in 2007 and helps Pennsylvanians plan for their future health.
Make Your Own Plan
Long term care insurance offers coverage for services received in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, or even in your home when you need help with daily activities like dressing, bathing, and eating. When buying a policy, be sure to compare multiple companies and strike a good balance between substantial benefits and affordable premiums. At LTC Tree, we offer clients an apples-to-apples comparison of the top providers and policies.
We will send the information to you in the mail for you to look over on your own time – no sales meeting and no pressure. Educating yourself about your long term care options is crucial to securing a happy retirement and ensuring you will be covered in case anything happens. Read more about long term care insurance or request your comparison today.