Who will need long-term care, when, and for how long?

A company that helps retirement planners think about acute health care costs is adding a tool planners can use to analyze long-term care costs.

HealthView Services Inc., Danvers, Mass., which is also known as HVS Financial, is building an LTC cost projector into the retirement health cost planning software tool collection it markets to financial institutions and advisors.

The LTC planning component can help advisors predict when a client will be most likely to need LTC, how long the client might use formal LTC services, and how much the services might cost.

The federal government has estimated that 70% of individuals over age 65 will eventually need some type of LTC, with formal, paid care costing an average of $20,000 to $150,000 per year in 2012 dollars, the company says.

Some clients could end up using well over $750,000 in LTC services, and advisors need a way to estimate what the costs might be and adjust the estimates for the effects of inflation, the company says.

Ron Mastrogiovanni, president of HVS Financial, says typical baby boomers are just starting to think about post-retirement acute health care costs and are still not thinking much about LTC costs.

LTCI calculators seem to be growing in popularity. Recently, the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance (AALTCI) posted a lifespan calculator on its site, to help consumers estimate how many years they might have to live.

The major LTCI insurers have been active at organizing LTCI cost surveys.