Just a few months ago Al was enjoying his wife, family and traveling. An acute health event occurred – an aneurism, I think. Now Al will need a tremendous amount of long-term care, for a long time. His family was unprepared for this.
While the circumstances are not that unusual, this particular story hit me hard. Al is my age, only about 68; he was my high school classmate.
This couple had successful careers and saved for retirement. They were constructive, active, engaged, intelligent, business-literate people. But they didn’t prepare properly for long-term care (LTC). If their situation is like most I encounter, an ethical and wise professional, like me, probably knocked on their door many years ago asking to introduce them to how LTC insurance works. They decided they didn’t need LTC insurance and were comfortable enough to self-insure for LTC. After all, they probably wouldn’t need it.
They are now stoically in reactive mode, cobbling together Al’s plan of care, under duress. I bet they do have the money to self-insure for Al’s LTC but they’re reluctant to use it, especially because Al’s need for care could last decades.
Al may need round the clock care. If they had LTC in place, it would pay enough to at least offer respite, possibly changing the wife’s caregiver role enough so that she had opportunity to enjoy her husband’s company.
The following is his wife’s post, the names have been changed: