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Consider many factors in long-term care planning

Many Texas residents believe they have invested wisely for the future and that they are prepared to handle any medical expenses they may incur in their retirement years. However, a certified care resource specialist, who has recently studied America's aging demographic, believes that many in the elder population will be ill-equipped to handle their financial burdens. He suggests a careful evaluation of long-term care issues and their effects on the elderly.

The specialist recounted the situation of a successful businessman who thought he had sufficient investments to cover his medical expenses and those of his wife. However, the businessman experienced illness that led to extensive surgery. His wife also became disabled after an automobile accident and required ongoing nursing care. The money he had invested was used to cover their medical expenses. In addition, they received help from family members and Medicaid.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services projects a significant increase in the number of people who use facilities for elder services, such as nursing homes, assisted living homes and home care services. The agency also states that over 70 percent of Americans over age 65 will require some sort of long-term care services in their lifetimes. As more people use these types of services and facilities, the costs for long-term care are expected to increase significantly.

It is recommended that all members of a family be involved in long-term care planning. Texas residents need to thoroughly understand what coverage government programs may provide in addition to what costs they may have to pay themselves. Seeking the advice of an experienced elder law attorney can be a beneficial step in the process of establishing financial security in the retirement years.

Source: swtimes.com, "Family Caregiving: Long-term care requires planning", Bob Meister, Jan. 28, 2017

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