Caring for a loved one with dementia or other healthcare needs can be overwhelming. If you are looking for long-term care for your loved one, it may be difficult to know when is the time to transition. Beyond that, you may not understand long-term care insurance or what it covers or costs.
Ben Green, President of Insurance Advantage, joins us to explain long-term care and give us a preview for our webinar, Senior Living LIVE! Long-Term Care: Qualifications, Costs, & Coverage Options.
Watch the video for a preview of the webinar and then visit ArborCompany.com/LongTerm to register!
- Hello everyone and welcome into senior living life. My name is Melissa. As always it is so good to see you again. And for those of us who are listening via a podcast, welcome back. Today we are previewing our upcoming webinar, October 28th at noon Eastern. That is all about finding ways to help you decide if long-term care coverage is the right option for you or your family. Ben Green, he will be our special presenter for that webinar. He is a fantastic resource for this topic and for many others. Ben, welcome back.
- Melissa, thank you very much for having me back.
- Yeah, well you know, you have shared your knowledge with us on many topics related to senior living on our platform via video, and those, I believe have been turned into podcasts as well. So you have been a familiar face or voice to a lot of our viewers, but for those who may not know a lot about you or your background, can you give us a little bit of an insight take of who you are and what you're about?
- Sure, sure. So name's Ben green, I'm president and COO of Insurance Advantage. And we've been a business for 12 years. We started out really ironically working with younger folks, folks under 35, getting them health insurance plans. And then we sort of transitioned into helping folks of really of all, all ages get health insurance. And a lot of the folks that we help get health insurance, they started transitioning into Medicare and turning 65. And so we went into the Medicare market because we also found that that market was underserved and folks were undereducated about what Medicare covered and what it did not cover, which we'll get to later. And so we've been doing that now for Medicare for the last five or six years and in the last four years or so, we've found that a lot of families were coming to us asking about both life insurance and then also long-term care insurance, cause they did not have a good understanding of it, and a lot of folks thought that Medicare covered long-term care costs. And so today we offer kind of that wide range of Medicare, but we do a lot of work helping families get long-term care insurance coverage and, and making sure that they're completely taken care of for their retirement years.
- Yeah. And these are the tough things. These are, these are topics that can be very convoluted, that can have a lot of, a lot of things written about, written about them that people may not understand very well. And so you are the guy that kind of does the dirty work. You dive in deep, you know what, what everything means and people come to you for that knowledge. And you have been able to share that with us, as I mentioned on many topics but, specifically this particular repertoire is all about long-term care and the choices out there as it relates to this type of coverage. So first what exactly is long-term care Ben? And who needs it and when does somebody need it?
- Yeah, so I want to start with what it is not first of all. So a lot of folks get it, get long-term care insurance coverage, confused with long-term disability coverage, that they may have, they may have during their working years, you know. That kind of long-term disability protects your paycheck essentially protection though that your income stream long-term care insurance is for, for things like coverage in a nursing home or an assisted living facility, or even a, if you're going to have home health care for a certain amount of time, a long-term care insurance policy can help to take care of that cost or even supplement the cost of coverage.
- Yeah. And it's one of those things that you, you don't really know that you need it until you really, really need it. And we'll talk more about that as we have this conversation, but you will be available during our webinar to answer questions, which of course is the beauty of our webinars. And when people come to you about this particular type of coverage, what are some of the questions that they ask and the answers that you give them?
- So a lot of folks come to us and say, well, I thought that thought that was covered by Medicare. Okay. And we say, you know, tell them, unfortunately, Medicare does not cover long-term care insurance coverage. Medicaid can cover long-term some long-term care, but for you to qualify for Medicaid, you essentially have to be destitute. Okay. You have to have know under $15,000 in assets, essentially, to qualify for Medicaid in most states. And if you do utilize Medicaid for your long-term care coverage, then when you, after you pass away, the government may take all of your assets essentially. And so that's one question just clearing up the confusion around Medicare and what it does and does not cover. The other question of course is how much does long-term, how much does long-term insurance long-term care insurance costs. And it really kind of all depends on when you get it. So if you come to us, when you're at age 40 or 45, he had some, some forethought, he had some planning and you come to us at that age, it's going to be a lot cheaper, of course, that if you come to us age 70, and we can still get you a long-term care insurance coverage at age 70, or maybe even age 70 to 73, but it's going to be more, more expensive of course. They do like to ask, how long it can cover so, how long of a span you can cover long-term care insurance. Can range from two years, for example, up to about, we have some policies that we can offer through companies, for example, that will last up to six years of coverage. So for example, it will give $4,000 a month for up to six years as an example. And so those are the typical questions around what Medicare covers, the costs and then how long policies can last. And then the other question of course is how do, how do we qualify? You know, do we qualify would we qualify for coverage? And it really all depends on your health. And so it is, it is very important if you're thinking about it and everyone should be thinking about it to take a look at it and get start, start working on it early on.
- Yeah. And so when we get into the nitty gritty of it and people are wondering, well, what does long-term care insurance cover? I think the list could probably be pretty exhaustive. So maybe let's talk about what isn't covered. That people maybe have a misconception. You mentioned a few things already, but when we talk about the specific care, what isn't covered.
- Yeah. So it covers, you know, care in a nursing home facility and assisted living facility, you know, memory care for example, and it can cover home health care as well, but it's not going to cover, your medical costs, right. It's not going to cover medical costs. So you'll still have to have a Medicare or some sort of health insurance plan. So have to have a prescription drug plan. You'll still have to, you know, you'll still have to, depending on if you have home health care, you still have to take care of your, your food and, you know, and, and a rent and utilities and all that sort of stuff, if you go into a facility, of course the facility is gonna cover, gonna cover those, those costs. And so, you know, long-term care coverage is meant to take care of your care in the facilities for home health care.
- Gotcha. Okay. So, you mentioned kind of how you started with your business and how it's kind of developed over time with where people have come to you for needs. So I'm wondering if you could give us an example of a situation where you have seen where someone came to you asking for this type of insurance, they put it in place down the road, they contacted you in sort of a crisis situation, found themselves where they desperately needed this and they had it.
- Well. So I, I will, I will give you a personal example. Unfortunately, I have a personal example myself. So about 12 years ago before I actually was, was in, in the insurance industry and then started helping folks with insurance. We took a look at long-term care insurance, actually for my, my father and for my mom. And my mom was, was if you will compliant with, with the, the overall plan we had in place. And we were able to put coverage in place for her, but my father did not. He did not want to, he didn't think there was a need for it essentially. So he missed, he missed the appointments. He missed the, you know, the, the meetings that we had set up to go ahead and get some long-term care insurance coverage in place. And unfortunately, just two months ago, actually, we now put him into a facility. And thankfully he has enough, to right now to cover the, the monthly cost of about $4,500. Okay. But essentially it is all of that cost is being eaten up or is eating up his social security and his pension. So we do not have anything extra to cover, to cover him essentially, and a long-term care insurance policy providing an additional two or $3,000, $4,000 a month would have been exceptionally, exceptionally helpful right now. And that's exactly what we were trying to put in place. That's what we have in place for my mom. And so I'm glad we have it in place for her, but unfortunately I have a real-world example of why you need to consider long-term care insurance.
- Yeah. And that is a powerful example. I mean, when people consider or think about senior living or the next step, what am I going to do after I retire? If I need a little extra help the, the question is always about money. What can I afford? And so, and these are things that it takes a little bit of forward thinking, you know, to really get the ball going on this. And as you said, the earlier that you start these plans, the better off you are. So I really encourage anybody who is watching this, no matter your age, sign up RSVP for your webinar, October 28th, you will be there to provide answers to questions that people have. It is just, it is a really important topic.
- So I'm really glad we're covering this today, yeah.
- Finally, resources. Is there any place you can direct our viewers or listeners to who may be a part of this process right now that you, that could help them or a way that they can get in touch with you?
- Sure, sure so, if they want resource, if they want some information on how much long-term care may cost, I'll have a slide for them in the webinar, of course. But if they want to Google it themselves, you can just look up, you know, average costs of long-term care facilities. And Genworth has some really good resources around it. It's typically they'll show, Hey, you know, it's going to be $4,000 per month for home health care. On a national average, it's going to be, you know, $6,000 from assisted living, et cetera. So they can, they can give, they can get that resource. They're the they're long-term cure associations that provide studies that talk about the need for long-term care and how much, how long you may need long-term care of course. And then they can always contact us. My email is email@example.com. So that's firstname.lastname@example.org. They can always email me, help, happy to help folks wherever they are. We're licensed in numerous states, but we, we consult folks really all over the country and really look forward to providing great information webinar on Thursday. I'm excited about it, even though it can be a tough, tough topic and look forward to hopefully helping folks plan their futures.
- Yeah. It is a tough topic, but it's an important topic. And we certainly can't wait to, can't wait to unleash your knowledge on this particular topic and many others. I'm sure many people will have questions for you that kind of range run the gamut of, of all topics that you were able to provide knowledge on. And we can't wait for that. Then we will see you then.
- Thank you Melissa, I appreciate it.
- Look forward to it.
- Thank you.
- Yeah. And for those of you who are interested in joining Ben's presentation, you can head on over to www.seniorlivinglive.com. There you can RSVP for this webinar, October 28th at noon Eastern time. And while you're there at seniorlivinglive.com, you can check out the rest of our videos where you can see Ben breaking down numerous other topics, all related to senior living. As always we appreciate you watching senior living live, and we hope to see you October 28th at noon Eastern.