By Ulla-Undine Merritt (Dee) National Producer Number (NPN) 8853366
No one knows if they will get any disease, but the best course of action is always being prepared for the unknown. It is never too early to sit down with an attorney and have a Will or Trust and Living Will (Advance Care Directive), drawn up. Most attorneys have a free ½ or 1 hr. consultation, it is well worth the money having your wishes documented and drawn up correctly. We have a list of attorneys we have done business with and would be happy to give you some names if you don’t know any. Why is this so important? You would not want your rights taken away. If you have dementia (or other medical conditions), you no longer can act for yourself on your best behalf. Maybe you wanted your sister to care for you or to hand handle your affairs but your brother stepped up, and now he has control of your assets and what will happen to you. Or maybe even a complete stranger now who has been assigned your Guardian. You should choose what you want while you still can. I think a family get together to discuss each other’s wishes is a great thing to do, then put pen to paper and have your attorney finalize your wishes. What a relief to have this off of your shoulders.
Everyone should have great health insurance and a prescription drug plan. As we get older our medical needs increase and access to the best care at a price you can afford is invaluable. It is a misconception that your health insurance or Medicare is meant for Long Term Care, such as a “Alzheimer’s disease is a degenerative brain disease and the most common cause of dementia. Dementia is also caused by other diseases and conditions. It is characterized by a decline in memory, language, problem solving and other cognitive skills that affect a person’s ability to perform everyday activities. This decline occurs because nerve cells (neurons), in parts of the brain involved in cognitive function have been damaged and no longer function normally. In Alzheimer’s disease, neuronal damage eventually affects parts of the brain that enable a person to carry out basic bodily functions such as walking and swallowing. People in the final stages of the disease are bed-bound and require around-the-clock care. Alzheimer’s disease is ultimately fatal.” www.alz.org/facts”
Skilled Nursing Facility. In special situations it does cover a limited time. Medicaid is often used to fund Skilled Nursing, but if you have assets you may need to spend them down.
Long Term Care Insurance is available starting in your 40’s, you should be thinking of this now. Remember the earlier you start the lower the premium. Long Term Care is NOT only for a nursing home, you can use it to stay in your home and have minimal care to extensive 24 hour home health service. “70% of the people turning 65 can expect to use some form of long-term care during their lives “ www.LongTermCare.gov.
Also remember when moving, getting married or divorced, adding to your family…to check your wills, trusts, and make sure they follow Florida’s laws and guidelines. Establish yourself with a local attorney, CPA, Financial Planner / Insurance Agent. An annual review is very important. Too many times people assume. Don’t assume. Ask a professional, most of the time your first consultation is at no charge.
Some average costs for healthcare in the United States (in 2010) were:
• $205 per day or $6,235 per month for a semi-private room nursing home
• $229 per day or $6,965 per month for a private room nursing home
• $3,293 per month for care in an assisted living facility (for a one-bedroom unit)
• $21 per hour for a home health aide
• $19 per hour for homemaking services
• $67 per day for services in an adult day health care center
The cost of Long-Term Care depends on the type and duration of care you need, the provider you use, and where you live. Costs can be affected by certain factors, such as:
• Time of day – Home health and home care services, provided in two-to-four-hour blocks of time referred to as “visits,” are generally more expensive in the evening, on weekends, and on holidays.
• Extra charges – Services provided beyond the basic room, food and housekeeping charges at facilities, although some may have “all inclusive” fees.
• Variable rates – In some community programs, such as adult day service, it’s provided at a per-day rate, but can be more based on extra events and activities.
To learn more schedule an appointment contact:
Logical Insurance Solutions