The long-term care insurance (LTCI) industry may be going through a rocky phase, but future growth in demand for long-term care (LTC) seems to be about as obvious as a freight train heading straight at consumers.

Humana Inc., Louisville, Ky. (NYSE:HUM), has acted on that assumption by agreeing to acquire SeniorBridge Family Companies Inc., New York, a company founded in 2000 that generates about $72 million in annual revenue by providing home health care services.

Senior Bridge provides home LTC services with a staff that includes 1,500 care managers. The company employs social workers, licensed nurses, home health aides, nursing assistants, licensed practical nurses and companions. The services provided range from transportation and meal preparation services to management of ventilators and tube feeding machines.

Humana is not saying how much it plans to pay for SeniorBridge, and it has not given details about how it wants to fold the company into its own operations, but it says SeniorBridge would become part of the Humana Health and Well-Being Services segment.

Humana hopes to get the federal and state regulatory approvals it needs to complete the deal by June 30, 2012.

Humana notes in a discussion of the deal that it already provides home health care management services.

Acquiring SeniorBridge “will enable Humana to provide care services directly, particularly to support activities of daily living (i.e. eating, dressing) and instrumental activities of daily living (i.e. housework, money management, grocery shopping),” the company says.

SeniorBridge has been serving “private-pay” customers, or customers who pay for care from their own resources.

Humana would like to offer SeniorBridge services to its own health plan members, including members of ordinary Medicare plans and the Medicare special needs plans that serve people with disabilities, the company says.

Humana believes providing high-quality home health care for seniors can help seniors stay in their homes while reducing emergency room use, hospital admissions and overall health care costs, the company says.