Jeff Tyrakowski writes: I think it’s admirable that the industry has a long term care awareness campaign [see LTC e-Wire for October 2008, Insurers join forces in long term care campaign, and November 2008, The economy is no reason to go dark on LTC insurance.]

But I do not believe that a marketing campaign that provides rational arguments is ever going to work. Rather, I think people need to be confronted with the facts: Medicare does not pay for LTC services, and a LTC event can ruin them financially.

Our culture is far from living within its means and saving for a rainy day. People are not buying LTC insurance, and that’s because it’s not something they can eat, drive or sleep with right now. They’re not seeing the value in $3,000 spent now to avoid losing $500,000 or more later. So rational arguments about the need for coverage aren’t going to work. A better message might be: “Hey, you’re going to lose everything.”

I’m not suggesting we use unethical pressure tactics. I am suggesting that a sense of urgency is needed. A consultative and supportive approach is always desired. But when my kids are playing with fire, I’m not calm and nurturing-I yell that they’re going to burn the house down.