The American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance (AALTCI) announced Tuesday that it had released its first Long-Term Care Insurance Almanac and Book of Facts, intended to help insurance and financial professionals address the increasing number of questions raised by prospective clients and professionals who may refer clientele.
According to Jesse Slome, executive director of the Association, “As awareness grows, so does the complexity of questions pertaining to long-term care and LTC insurance. We wanted one easy-to-use resource that an agent could leave with an inquiring prospect without having to do hours of research.”
The almanac divides information into six categories: aging and need, home health care, assisted living, nursing home care, claims and federal and state protections. “Few, if any, consumers considering long-term care insurance have heard of the state guaranty associations that exist for their protection,” says Slome.
Much of the data comes from proprietary research conducted annually by the Association, he says. “The rest comes from countless hours of reading detailed government studies and pulling the most relevant data that pertains to this field,” he explains. Such facts as the two main reasons for women to seek home health care (arthritis, 18%, followed by Alzheimer’s disease, 17%) and the percentage of those over 65 requiring between 2 and 5 years of long-term care (20%) are readily accessible.
Slome acknowledges that inundating a prospective client with data isn’t an effective way to convince them to purchase a policy, but he points out that not being able to address questions with specific factual information will kill any chance of appearing as a knowledgeable expert.
“Google has created a very active consumer who wants more information. Where two years ago we used to get one consumer phone call a month, today we get anywhere from 3-5 a day. They want to know facts and figures, and they want to validate what they've heard or read.”
While “the consumer doesn’t expect anyone to have all the data memorized,” he points out, “Google's made these very smart consumers, and if you're going to be successful you have to be a step ahead of them. Google requires it!”