Will long-term care insurance cover the cost of staying in a nursing home?

Q:

Will long-term care insurance cover the cost of staying in a nursing home?

A:

This is a question insurance professionals hear a lot because many people are unclear about their long-term care coverage. The short answer is yes, long-term care insurance does cover the cost of putting the insured into a nursing home.

Long-term care insurance is a way of protecting the policyholder's financial resources (their nest egg) should something happen that would leave them unable to take care of themselves and require substantial assistance to perform activities of daily living. This coverage is becoming increasingly important as a larger and larger portion of Western society reaches retirement age and is expected to live longer and longer after they do.

Long-term care insurance pays out money that you or your family can use as you see fit, including moving the insured into a care facility or hiring someone to provide in-home care. Without long-term care insurance, there are really only a few options available: rely on whatever government assistance might be available in your jurisdiction or pay for the expenses yourself.

That being said, the decision between moving someone into a nursing home or providing them with in-home care depends on the complexity of their needs and the severity of their condition, along with personal preference. Some issues may be too serious to manage at home, and some patients feel more comfortable in a social environment of their peers. The great thing about long-term care insurance is that it provides you money to spend as you see fit, giving you the flexibility to choose the most suitable care options (see 4 Signs You Need Long-Term Care Insurance to find out if it's right for you).

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Written by Jacques Wong
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Jacques grew up around the insurance industry and began actively participating in 2013. Since then, he has gotten a Level 2 license, won an Insurance Council of BC award in 2015 for academic excellence in the insurance licensing courses and educates insurance professionals through PNC Learning.   Full Bio