Seventy percent of 2019 long-term care insurance policy claimants received initial benefit payments for care at home, according to the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance. That 70% represents a 52% increase over 2014 claims data as reported by the AALTCI.

And the percentage likely will increase. “COVID-19 has made individuals increasingly desirous of the ability to remain at home, and more insurance professionals are focusing on the home care benefits available,” AALTCI Director Jesse Slome said.

Even so, he added, many consumers still associate long-term care insurance primarily with skilled nursing home care. “Agents really should explain that this is nursing-home-avoidance protection,” Slome said. “That is, funds to help cover costs associated with care services provided in your own home, where you’d prefer to be.”

For less than $100 a month, a 57-year-old man can currently purchase a policy that pays $5,100 monthly for home care services when he reaches age 85, he said. “If home care is then needed for two years, the policy would pay out over $122,000 in total benefits,” Slome said. Such a policy also would provide benefits should qualifying care be received in either an assisted living community or skilled nursing home facility.

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