Interview with Barbara Smith, CEO, Ask Barbara
Situation: Many executives in their 50s and 60s have parents in their 80s and 90s. When parents can no longer take care of themselves, there are important decisions to make regarding long-term care. What considerations are important to these decisions?
- The most important challenge is that we often don’t want to think about these decisions.
- There are three legs of the stool when it comes to later life planning.
- Regular life insurance for family and final arrangements.
- Financial planning to assure that you will have the assets to provide for yourself in later life.
- Long-term care insurance can expand alternatives and help defer the cost of later life care.
- Also, an estate planning attorney can shield assets if Medicaid will cover the expense of later life care.
- The aging population is rapidly changing the demographics of later life care provision.
- In Santa Clara County, California 16% of the population is currently 60+. This will go up to 25% by 2040.
- Baby Boomers who waited longer to have children may have small children and aging parents at the same time. If a family member currently cares for elders, what will happen if they return to the workforce?
- Medicare and Medicaid cover hospital and skilled nursing, but not assisted living. Long-term care insurance is important for those in their 50s and 60s and is less expensive if purchased earlier.
- Needs and alternatives are changing as the generations change.
- In contrast to their parents, Baby Boomers are more open to late stage options. They look for amenities and social environments that will enable them to stay active.
- The village concept is gaining momentum – communities of like-minded seniors who will move into a community, often at a younger age than earlier generations.
- Current elders are healthier than Boomers, and even more so than younger generations due to better diet and exercise habits. This has implications for both the care needs and options available to the younger generations as they age.
- Technology will come into play in new ways. Current products assist in tracking and dispensing medications. There are also fall-alert devices and nanny cams to monitor parents in case of emergencies. Many more will be developed.
You can contact Barbara Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org
Key Words: Long-term care, Generations, Planning, Urgent, Insurance, Financial Planning, Long-term Care Insurance, Estate Planning, Demographics, Baby Boomer, Depression, Family Care, Assisted Living, Village, Health