Long term care is a looming crisis that lawmakers have tried unsuccessfully to remedy. Despite the recent conclusion of the federal Commission on Long Term care, people are still confused about exactly what long term care entails and how to prepare. Adding to the confusion, a new poll found that many Americans are also mistaken about who pays for most of the nation’s long term care.

Who Pays? long term care insurance

Throughout the month of September this year, just over 2,000 adults in the United States were asked about various aspects of long term care and the associated financing. It was discovered that although the majority of people see the issue of long term care as a problem, they wrongly believe that the bulk of long term care services are paid for out-of-pocket by individuals.

49%  of study participants answered this way, while another one-third of the group believed Medicare pays for most of the long term care costs. Only 19% of people answered correctly and said Medicaid.

Cost and Confusion

This poll reveals how uninformed Americans are about the different long term care options and emphasizes the need for more awareness about long term care across the nation. As Baby Boomers enter retirement, the number of people receiving long term care is set to significantly increase over the next few decades. Unfortunately, this type of care is so expensive that the average American simply can’t afford to pay for it out of pocket.

A recent John Hancock study gauged the average cost of various long term care services and found that costs continue to rise annually, costing anywhere from $20,000 to $100,000, depending on what type of and how much care is needed.

For those who have not established a financial plan to pay for long term care, the costs can quickly eat up your retirement savings. In the end, most people are forced to spend through their assets and enroll in Medicaid in order to keep receiving care. This reality is something that many Americans seem blissfully unaware of, an ignorance that can end up costing thousands, or even hundreds of thousands, in the long run.

Learn the Different Options

Understanding how long term care works and establishing a plan to help you pay for it is a step in the right direction for a stress-free retirement. Long term care insurance can help you pay for the services you receive and ensure that you get the care you deserve. Policies can be very affordable if you do your research.

LTC Tree agents can provide you with a side-by-side comparison of the top companies and policies for you to review on your own time. We stress a no-pressure approach, which means no sales meetings and no pushy sales tactics. Buying the right policy for your situation is important, so read these long term care insurance buying tips or request a quote today.