Confusion Over Real Costs
by: Dan Fogel
According to a recent study that was completed by AARP (American Association of Retired People), there seems to be a great gap in most people's knowledge about the costs of senior care.
Worse yet, most people have misconceptions about those costs and how they will be paid.
According to AARP, the national average monthly cost for a nursing home is over $4600.00 Less than 15% of people over the age of 45 could come within 20% of that figure with more than 50% of the total, guessing very low.
This of course can be quite a shocker to people when they find out what the real costs are. Nearly 60% of those surveyed said that they thought Medicare pays for long-term nursing home care when in fact it does not.
There was also a great deal of confusion over whether Medicare and Medigap insurance covers the costs of assisted living. More than 40% indicated that they thought those costs were covered, but again, they are not.
Homecare was the third area that seemed to cause confusion. While Medicare covers the costs of home visits by a registered nurse, many people didn't understand the difference between a nurse and a home health aid. Home health aid costs are only covered if they are medically necessary. Yet more that 50% thought that Medicare covers those costs completely.
Subjects were also asked whether they had insurance to cover long-term care. Approximately 30% indicated that they thought that they had such coverage, the Health Insurance Association of America indicates that only about 6% have such coverage. This can obviously lead to a sense of false preparedness.