For workers who will be providing informal care for spouses, parents or other loved ones, long-term care (LTC) planning may be a form of income protection.
Analysts at Genworth Financial Inc. (NYSE:GNW) have published a look at how caregiving can affect the caregivers’ finances in a summary of results from a survey of 1,200 U.S. care recipients, care providers and relatives of recent care recipients.
Genworth presented the data at an LTC symposium on Capitol Hill. The company organizes the meetings each year to get policymakers’ thinking about LTC issues.
Analysts reported at the symposium, for example, that only 48 percent of the care recipients said they had thought about the possibility of needing long-term care before they needed care. Just 12 percent made any kind of plan to handle LTC needs, and only 5 percent said they had made adequate plans for LTC needs.
The analysts also presented data showing that, like a serious disability, the need to provide care for a loved one may be a serious threat to an individual’s ability to earn an income.
About 83 percent of the caregivers said they had at least some positive feelings about providing care, but even many of those reported feeling an extremely high level of stress.
In Japan, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has made supporting working caregivers a key part of his strategy to decrease stress levels in his country and improve the working caregivers’ productivity.
See also: LTCI Watch: Elder care scandal