Study Gives LTC Brokers Some Facts Their Clients Need To Know
A recent study by CNA Group Benefits outlines the average cost in 2000 of room and board at nursing care facilities across the country as well as ancillary services not always covered by long-term care policies.
Both pieces of information are useful to brokers, says Cheryl McNamara, vice president, product management, group long-term care, of the Chicago-based company.
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“It helps someone figure out how much insurance they should buy,” she says. “Some people want to retire in a different location; the study will show them if the average cost in those areas looks like the cost in their area and the broker can advise them that way.”
McNamara says the discussion of ancillary services should be a reminder to brokers to guard against creating false expectations in the buyer by having a clear understanding of the contract language.
A broker can take the study to an insurer to find out exactly which ancillary services are covered under a policy, McNamara says.
Policies often include wording about covering “reasonable charges,” according to McNamara. But she adds that a broker should not assume this means it will pay for ancillary charges.
“If it says it will pay the reasonable charges, you just dont know,” she says. “Some companies will [pay ancillary charges], some will not. The broker can take the study, show it to the insurer and ask, Which do you pay?”