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Each year, an increasing number of Baby Boomers become eligible for
A 2010 survey by
This apparent desire is changing the way seniors look at their future care, and it should be affecting their expectations about the coverage they receive from
“Now, more than ever, seniors making plans to spend their golden years in their own homes should be thinking about how that decision will affect their quality of care and their personal finances,” says Smith-Dewey. “
Seniors often have unrealistic expectations about
Some seniors and their caregivers mistakenly believe that
In truth, the vast majority of
What in-home care can seniors expect from
In-home physical therapy – In some cases,
Home health aides – Following acute care, a home health aide may also be covered under
Home safety –
“They’ll check for clear pathways and make suggestions about rearranging furniture to accommodate wheelchairs and walkers,” says Hanley. “They’ll make recommendations for elevated toilet frames for stability, installing grab bars and even creating a downstairs bedroom in older homes when patients can’t make it up the stairs.”
Durable medical equipment – Physical and occupational therapists can secure durable medical equipment – hospital beds, bedside commodes, canes, walkers and wheelchairs – for the patient’s use in the home with a doctor’s order. In most cases,
But Hanley notes that recipients should be aware that the covered equipment is limited.
What about other long-term care expenses?
For the foreseeable future, seniors will have to look outside of
Her advice? Think about long-term care insurance for coverage of in-home care. Depending on the policy, long-term care coverage could include skilled nursing care, physical therapy and assistance with activities of daily living (custodial care).
Also, check out the offerings of local social services organizations and – if you’re a veteran – become familiar with VA benefits. But definitely don’t wait.
“It’s so important to people to buy long-term care insurance and to get in early,” Samotin says. “If you buy in your 40s, 50s and 60s, your coverage may cost a few thousand dollars a year. If you wait until you’re older or the point when you need it, the premiums are going to be much higher, or you may be uninsurable.”
Tools on the site include an interactive Medicare Smarts Self-Diagnosis tool – at http://medicare.healthinsurance.org/quiz/ – to help visitors test their understanding of their
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