Life expectancy continues to grow. Today, 65-year-olds in Canada live, on average to age 87 for men and 89 for women. As people age their health care needs continue to rise.
Long Term Care Insurance is designed to assist with the costs of aging. It is like Disability Insurance that pays a regular cash benefit but it is designed to cover the costs associated with diminished health; not to replace income.
Long Term Care Insurance is appropriate for people who are concerned that government healthcare benefits will not provide the type of care they desire. If you want increased flexibility to decide the level of care you receive and if you are concerned about increased healthcare costs, this is an option you need to consider.
What you Need to Know
Most Canadians would prefer to remain in the homes for as long as possible as they age and as their health deteriorates. The ability to perform Activities of Daily Living (ADL) lessens while placing added pressure on able-bodied spouses, adult children and other family members.
ADL include activities necessary for self-care:
- personal hygiene – bathing and grooming
- dressing – for both indoors and outdoors
- eating – consuming food and drink, not preparing or cooking
- transferring – moving, sitting, standing, in/out of bed
- locomotion – walking on flat-ground or gentle slopes and up/down stairs
- toileting – bowel and bladder control
The cost of in-home care or assisted-living facilities to counteract the loss of ADL can be substantial and can persist for a significant amount of time. As the impairment of ADL increases, increasing amounts of care will be required, and moving to a long-term care facility may be contemplated.
Long Term Care Insurance pays a monthly cash benefit if two of the areas of ADL are severely diminished; typically. Veteran Affairs Canada has an excellent explanation of the Impairment of Activities of Daily Living; http://www.veterans.gc.ca/pdf/dispen/tod2006/chapter_19_2006.pdf
The Bottom Line
Like all insurance plans, Long Term Care Insurance requires an application. There may be additional question based on your application, age or existing physical capabilities, and an interview could also be needed. I will guide you through the entire application process.