It would be tough to keep up with the price hikes for long-term care for anyone, much less those on already tight budgets.
According to Genworth’s 15th annual Cost of Care Survey, over the last 15 years, the costs of all types of care — nursing home, adult day care, assisted living — have risen 19% to 67%. And who among us has gotten a pay raise of 67% to keep pace?
Genworth says that the “blended annual median cost of long-term care support services has increased an average of 3% from 2017 to 2018, with some care categories exceeding two to three times the 2.1% U.S. inflation rate.”
LTC Price Hikes Not Over
There’s likely more news of that variety to come, since a shortage of skilled workers is yet another force pushing prices up.
Other factors affecting the cost include more overtime (thanks in part to that scarcity of staff); higher minimum wages and changes in overtime rules; recruiting and retention challenges; issues faced by home care agencies including compliance obligations and caregiver certification issues; rising instances of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia; and the need for more specialized (and thus more expensive) care, thanks in part to people waiting too long to get care.
Private Nursing Home Room Costs Rise 54%
So it should come as no surprise that care is growing ever more expensive. Still, says Genworth, over the last 15 years of its survey, that 67% figure we mentioned earlier is how much the cost of long-term care in assisted living facilities has risen. Private nursing home rooms have gone up by 54%.
And in case you were wondering, the report says that “a private nursing home room now costs 1.6 times the national median annual household income, which was $62,685 in August 2018.”
The only good news (sort of) is that in-home care costs have stayed relatively flat over the life of the study, with price increases accelerating only recently. Home health aide costs are up 19% since 2004, while homemaker services are up 26% over the same period.
Check out the gallery above for the 15 most expensive states for long-term care.
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