What are caregivers' top concerns regarding long-term care and financial planning?


Q: Mom has several health conditions that make it impossible for her to continue living alone safely. We need to look into long-term care, but don't know where to start. What concerns regarding long-term care do you hear from caregivers?

A: The top concern Genworth's Care Advocates hear from caregivers again and again is that they want in-depth, unbiased information about their options for caregiving and long-term care. They want objective advice and guidance. Long-term care is a major life decision, so understandably, caregivers have a long list of concerns. Some of the common issues are explained below.

  • For many families, it takes an urgent event, an unforeseen illness or accident, or an unexpected health diagnosis before they realize a loved one suddenly needs care. But they never thought much about it, and quickly become overwhelmed with the complexity of planning for long-term care.
  • Many families never planned ahead for the expense associated with long-term care, either. Numbers in the thousands, or tens of thousands of dollars, are being discussed, leaving the family to wonder, "Where is the money going to come from?"
  • Coinciding with that trauma is the realization that the caregiver needs to find a place where mom or dad will get the level of care they need. Suddenly, they are faced with deciding among many types of care options, such as in-home care, assisted living facilities, nursing homes, continuing care retirement communities, and adult daycare centers.

Beyond that, caregivers are looking for a trusted advisor, someone to stand by them as their advocate as they navigate the important steps of assessing care needs, making a care plan, and choosing a provider.

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I have found that when all these financial plannings are mentioned, it is always about people's parents. Which I have gone through with my MIL. My situation right now is not dealing with parents, but with a spouse. It is much worst to have to figure out your own finances, rather then your parents, when dealing with a dementia family member who is your spouse.