Many members of Generation X say they feel unprepared for the cost of long term care and think they are not taking the steps necessary to prepare for their future, according to America’s Health Insurance Plans.

Researchers at AHIP, Washington, have based that conclusion on results from a recent survey of about 1,000 U.S. residents born between 1960 and 1980.

Among Gen-Xers responding to the survey, 52% said they feel somewhat or entirely unprepared for long term care. Retirement is a more pressing concern for many, with 44% ranking the need to save for retirement as their first or second priority, according to AHIP.

Although 68% of the participants said they believe it is likely that they will need long term care in the future, 53% said they are not knowledgeable about LTC insurance coverage.

Half of respondents estimated the average annual nursing home bill is between $20,000 and 60,000 per year. The actual average cost of a year of long term care is more than $75,000, according to the National Caregiver Alliance, San Francisco.

The current economic downturn has only worsened the financial situations of survey respondents, with 57% saying they have been hurt. Of those who said they were affected by the economy, 51% said they have been forced to stop planning for their long term care and another 33% said they are spending less time planning for long term care.