Louisiana officials have announced the start of the state’s Long Term Care Partnership program.

Louisiana joins around 40 other states in offering the partnerships, which are mechanisms that states can use to coordinate Medicaid nursing home benefits with private LTC insurance benefits. Individuals can use partnership coverage to protect some of their assets if they exhaust private LTC benefits and end up needing to use Medicaid nursing home benefits.

In 2008, the average cost of a semi-private room in a nursing home in Louisiana was $118 a day, and care in an assisted living facility cost an average of about $2,500 per month, officials report.