The return of the long-term care services funding debate

According to an online article in Forbes on March 14, following the end of the CLASS Act last year, there has been a great deal of concern about the way that the needs for long-term care by the elderly and disabled younger adults, will be financed in the United States. Federal officials and about two dozen states have now taken a fresh step to rectify this problem, working with insurance company executives, advocates, and researchers in a meeting that lasted almost six hours for an idea exchange. The group was…

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John Hancock Financial raises rates on long-term care, sees backlash from consumers

John Hancock Financial, one of Colorado’s largest insurance companies, recently raised rates for long-term care coverage significantly. Some consumers saw increases as high as 90%, while other saw increases of half that number. The rate hikes have sparked the ire of consumers who say that these new rates are excessive. The state’s Department of Insurance is not being inundated with complaints concerning the matter, though regulators claim that the rates are somewhat justified. Long-term care insurance provides coverage for those that must take advantage of nursing homes or various types…

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Avoiding misconceptions about Medicare to sidestep financial struggles

Medicaid insurance plans standards

According to the outcome of a study performed by Bankers Life and Casualty Company Center for a Secure Retirement, a startling number of retired individuals in the middle-income bracket who are on Medicare either do not understand or they misunderstand the costs and coverage provided by the program, which can lead to unexpected expenses. The research, whose findings were included in the report entitled “Retirement Healthcare for Middle-Income Americans”, examined data regarding 400 pre-Medicare individuals in the baby boomer generation (aged 47 to 64), as well as 400 adults in…

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John Hancock announces re-entry into individual long-term care insurance in California

John Hancock has announced that it will be resuming its place as a part of the California individual long-term care insurance marketplace, starting on February 27, 2012, through both its Custom Care III (non-Partnership) and its new California Partnership policy. These two policies will provide comprehensive long-term care coverage for all circumstances, such as assisted living facilities, nursing homes, adult day-care centers, and at home, and will also provide the policyholder with care planning and care giving support. The president of John Hancock long-term care insurance, Marianne Harrison, expressed the…

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Survey shows long-term care services are increasingly expensive

Metlife Mature Market Institute has published a report of the outcomes of its annual long-term care services costs survey, which includes home care, adult day programs, assisted living facilities, and nursing homes. The survey showed that the cost of long-term care services is continuing to climb, and that this year it rose more quickly than the rate of inflation. The only exception to this rule was the cost of home care services, which was the same from last year to this year. The average cost of care in a private…

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Long-Term health care plan axed by the Department of Health and Human Services

Last week, the Obama administration announced that it will be cancelling the long-term care insurance program that would have been created from the Affordable Care Act. The program, known as Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS), would have brought aid to those suffering from chronic illness and disability, was determined to be a detriment to the overall economic health of the nation, leading Kathleen Sebelius, secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, to discontinue the program. Opponents of the Affordable Care Act claim this as a major…

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Department of Health and Human Services casts a wary eye at CLASS

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is currently reviewing a new report concerning the longevity of the Community Living Assistance Services and Support (CLASS) program. The long-term care program has generated controversy lately after the resignation of the program’s administrator and staff. As of now, the program will not receive any federal money in 2012. CLASS is designed to provide insurance coverage for those needing long-term care. The future of the program is currently in jeopardy but the HHS is not inclined to solve any of its problems…

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