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Researchers organize LTC finance workshop

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Researchers seem to be organizing a workshop on long-term care (LTC) finance without high-level input from members of the private long-term care insurance (LTCI) community.

The behavioral and social sciences division at the Board on Health Sciences Policy, part of the federal Institute of Medicine, is planning to start the one-day workshop at 9 a.m. Wednesday.

At press time, the workshop agenda was not available.

Some of the members of the behavioral and social sciences division advisory committee are economists, but the words “actuary” and “insurance” do not appear in the members’ biographies.

In a description of the purpose of the workshop, organizers said there is a disconnection between the medical system and the social services system when it comes to keeping seniors and adults with disabilities in the setting of their choice in the community.

“Underpinning all aspects of successful community living and independence for people who are aging and/or with disabilities is the importance of a holistic person-centered planning process that addresses health and long term services and support needs in a manner that reflects individual preferences,” organizers said.

LTC finance has become a significant issue both for the people who need the services and for the country as a whole, organizers said.

“Medicare plays no role in financing [long-term services and supports (LTSS)], and relatively few people have purchase private long term care insurance (about 6-7 million policies currently),” organizers said. “With the projected demographics for the aging of our population, these numbers are expected to increase exponentially.”

The workshop speakers will talk about LTC financing trends and “consider the role of families, business, and government” in LTC finance, organizers said.

Workshop organizers said they also want to focus attention on matters such as personal savings for LTC needs, “intergenerational transfers” (estate planning), and “the role of short- and long-term disability insurance plans.”

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