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Feds to study LTCI attitudes

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The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is getting ready to conduct a long-term care insurance (LTCI) awareness survey.

HHS officials want to get about 15,000 Americans ages 40 to 70 to spend about 45 minutes each answering questions about how much they know about long-term care (LTC) needs, how they’re planning for general retirement and LTC needs, what information they’ve gathered about LTCI, how they’re making decisions about LTCI, and specific LTCI policy preferences.

HHS had an outside vendor, RTI, develop the two-part survey. The vendor tested the survey on small groups of consumers in Durham, N.C., and Washington in late 2012, according to a routine information collection review notice published in the Federal Register.

HHS wants to do the survey because the country spent $211 billion on LTC services in 2011, LTC services already account for 8 percent of national health expenditures, and public LTC spending already eats up 1 percent of U.S. gross domestic product, officials write in the notice.

Given how much more governments expect to have to pay for LTC services in the future, as the baby boomers age, “the government has an increased need for information on the general public’s knowledge about long-term care and how people plan to organize and pay for their possible long-term care needs,” officials say.

HHS “is particularly interested in the views of the public on different potential public policies on long-term care financing and in what design features of long-term care insurance are most important,” officials say.

The notice lists Darius Taylor, a deputy information collection clearance officer, as the contact person. 

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