Employee Benefit Research Institute’s recent finding that workers and retirees both have low confidence in their ability to pay for long term care costs is scary.
The study found that the percentage of retirees who are very confident about their ability to pay for LTC costs has fallen to 15%, from 24% in 2008, and that the percentage of workers who are very confident about this has fallen to 10%, from 13%.
[That's based on a telephone survey of 1,001 U.S. workers ages 25+ and a related telephone survey of 256 retirees. See our recap here. To view more details, visit EBRI's retirement survey section here.]
Those aren’t encouraging numbers, especially since the percentages have trended down since 2004, the first year of the survey. In 2004, the percentages were 15% and 30%, respectively.
The 2009 results likely reflect the overall erosion in confidence brought about by the recession. That’s understandable. Still, the figurs demonstrate an awful fact, that many people are losing their sense of security concerning their retirement years.
One has to ask, where will this lead?
Specialists in LTC insurance should definitely be asking that question. After all, the planning they help facilitate and the insurance products and services they sell are, or should be, antidotes to declining confidence.
No one LTC plan and no one LTC product will lift the spirits of people who do not believe they will be able to afford long term care. But, when combined with other plans and financial products, such planning and products can certainly help.