Long-term care costs set to rise another 5% over the next six months

The cost of providing long-term care services has increased faster than the rate of inflation since 2004, according to a report released this month by the Bipartisan Policy Center, with annual costs ranging from $ 19,240 for care day for adults at $ 105,850 for a private. room in a retirement home.

The cost increases – which the report said are expected to increase by at least 5% over the next six months – were linked to increased demand and labor shortages, amplified by the pandemic.

Long-term care spending reached $ 426.1 billion in 2019, representing 13% of all national spending on personal health care that year, according to the report.

The Report’s Solution – Congress To Establish A Caregiver Tax Credit For Long-Term Care Expenses And Standardize Private Long-Term Care Insurance As Part Of Long-Term Care Retirement Insurance (LTCI).

The authors of the Bipartisan Policy Center also suggested to Congress to urge employers to offer the LTCI and automatically enroll employees aged 45 and over, while offering a penalty-free withdrawal from retirement savings accounts to pay off retirement savings. LTCI premiums and make it easier for employees to convert their life insurance to long-term life insurance. term care.

“As the number of people with unmet needs increases, the long-term cost to Medicaid and Medicare also increases through increased and fragmented use of acute care and institutional facilities,” the report says. “This study was undertaken to estimate the federal costs associated with subsidizing an LTSS ‘purchase’ from the Medicare program or alternatively, as a purchase from Medicaid benefits.”

The report also cites an expected 34% increase in home health assistance and personal care jobs over a decade, a finding echoed in a national PHI study earlier this month.

These jobs are growing faster than the average for all other occupations, according to the report, and with a median hourly pay rate of $ 13.02, finding workers for these positions will become increasingly difficult over time.

“By comparison, social workers and social services – a similar profession with similar educational requirements – earn a median wage of $ 17.29 per hour,” the bipartisan report said; these workers are also reimbursed by Medicare and Medicaid.

The Bipartisan Policy Center was formed by Democrat Tom Daschle and Republican Bill Frist, former majority leaders in the Senate; former Secretary of Health and Human Services and Governor Tommy Thompson (R); and Alice Rivlin (D), former vice president of the Federal Reserve, director of the Office of Management and Budget and director of the Congressional Budget Office.

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