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Study Finds Affluent Far More Likely to Purchase Long-Term Care Insurance

  • April 26th, 2011

Private insurance to cover long-term care needs remains relatively rare, but coverage rates are nearly twice as high among those with annual incomes in excess of $100,000, according to a new report by the Urban Institute.

The report found that although only 10.7 percent of Americans age 55 and older had private long-term care insurance in 2008, coverage rates increase with income, reaching 19.3 percent for those whose annual incomes exceeded $100,000. By contrast, only about 3 percent of those age 55 and older with incomes below $20,000 had private coverage. While 12.4 percent of non-Hispanic whites had long-term care insurance policies, only 3 percent of African Americans and only 2.4 percent of Hispanics had them.

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Still, the report found that coverage rates have increased somewhat in recent years. In 2002, 9.1 percent of Americans age 55 and older had private long-term care insurance.

Meanwhile, overall sales of long-term care insurance policies increased in 2010 according to the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance, an industry trade group. The Association reports that individuals who purchased long-term care insurance protection in 2010 continued to favor limited-duration policies, with more than half of new purchasers selecting policies with a benefit period of four years or less. (For more on this option and on considerations in purchasing long-term care insurance in general, click here.)

To read the Urban Institute report, "Who Purchases Long-Term Care Insurance?" click here.


Last Modified: 04/26/2011

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