Over half a million Americans are expected to apply for long-term care insurance before the year concludes according to a projection from an industry trade group.
This marks significant continued growth in awareness and action among consumers explains Jesse Slome, executive director of the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance http://www.aaltci.org. "In 2010 the Association reported that 475,000 Americans obtained long-term care insurance coverage either on an individual basis or through their employer an increase over the prior year."
According to the projection, interest and sales continue to trend up which can be attributed to several factors. "Consumers in their 50s and young 60s are more aware than ever of the risks involved in living into their 80s and 90s," Slome explains. "The millions of pre-retirees understand that government programs will not be sufficient to deal with the burgeoning number of aging baby boomers and that new federal programs will be more suited to those with existing health limitations."
The Association director notes that significant growth in sales will result from the thousands of federal employees signing up for coverage through the Federal Long-Term Care Insurance Program (FLTCIP) where open enrollment closes June 24. "I would expect tens of thousands of newly covered individuals in the program with an equal number who searched and compared coverage on an individual basis," Slome adds.
Over eight million Americans currently have long-term care insurance protection and roughly 200,000 received benefits from their coverage in 2010 according to the 2011 Long-Term Care Insurance Sourcebook. The majority (56 percent) of individual applicants are between the ages of 55 and 64. "People increasingly understand the need to look into this protection prior to retirement age," Slome concludes. "That is when costs are more affordable and you are still most likely able to health qualify for coverage."