Forbes has recently published some explicit, straightforward and accurate columns on long-term care (LTC). These columns are a great service to the public and a refreshing break from the typically neglected, error-riddled, negatively slanted coverage of LTC.
Mr. Pfau is my new LTC hero!
In his December 22, 2015 Forbes column on the importance of planning for LTC, he states most retirement income planning is focused on income needs and market volatility and longevity.
A major retirement risk, which receives far less coverage and is often ignored, is that of spending shocks: having to spend significantly higher amounts than planned. Mr. Pfau states, “Long-term care (LTC) spending represents one of the most severe spending shocks that can impact retirees.”
He continues, “An expensive LTC event could derail an otherwise well-built retirement plan. This problem is growing as people are living longer, since it becomes more likely that care will be needed for longer as well. Older individuals suffer from higher rates of physical and cognitive problems, and they may have fewer family members or friends who are in a position to provide sustained daily assistance.”
I love that Mr. Pfau also accurately describes the psychology of denial that causes the failure and refusal to properly plan for LTC. He goes on to explain that lack of LTC planning “can create strains as long-term care depletes household assets, bankrupts a surviving spouse, or adds burdens for other family members who may end up making large sacrifices to provide care.”
Mr. Pfau then continues to clearly, accurately describe what LTC is.
I am very grateful to Mr. Pfau and believe this column is of great value to readers.