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Long-term care is the support and care that an individual requires when they can no longer undertake the activities of their daily living. Who needs such care? They include those with injuries, disabilities, several mental illnesses, or those affected by the aging process. An individual may require LTC for the rest of his or her life. Though a higher percentage of people over 65 years of age are typically the ones who need long-term care, ailment and injuries can affect anyone regardless of their age.

States Scorecard on long-term care

According to a report by SCAN Foundation, Commonwealth Fund, and AARP Foundation, States are improving on long-term care. It also found out that many states are increasing the proportion of Medicaid regarding community and home-based services. The report also highlights that more states are building a support system for family caregivers and are enacting strategies that make nursing home placement a matter of last resort. The Washington, Minnesota Vermont Alaska and Oregon States are at the top the scorecard.

How can one get the long-term care covered?

Long-term care can be an expensive affair, with reports saying that family caregivers spend about 20 percent of their income to costs related to this care. This is because Medicare and other hospital insurance programs do not cover long-term care. For example, in the state of Washington, Medicaid only covers individuals who possess less than $2,000 in total assets. It is such concerns that have led to the introduction of a bipartisan legislation that will soon be enacted in Washington state. The Long-Term Care Trust Act establishes an insurance program that will provide an alternative to Medicaid and make long-term care accessible and affordable.

Cover under the Long-Term Care Trust Act

It will be open to all employees of over 18 years of age, though non-eligible employees can join the program and gain coverage. The insurance program will cover beneficiaries for 365 consecutive or non-consecutive days. A benefit of $100 per day is to be reimbursed to the caregivers. The cover will be on services provided by a certified provider and in settings like adult family homes, skilled nursing facilities, in-home care aides or assisted living.

Benefits of the legislation

Many individuals lose their income by leaving the workforce to provide care and support for their family members. The program will increase workforce and productivity and in turn, benefit the state’s economy. It will also eliminate the financial burden for many individuals to use their savings is that they can meet the requirements of Medicaid. Finally, if proven successful, such bipartisan legislature may be extended to other states, thus providing relief to others in similar situations.