During the year I receive calls asking if Medicare covers long-term custodial care. Medicare does not cover custodial care. The up to 100 days in a skilled-nursing facility is not for long-term/custodial care; it is for skilled care as defined by Medicare. Should someone be placed in a skilled nursing bed based on their need for specific daily skilled care/services but then plateau, they will no longer fit the requirements of a skilled nursing bed. Should they wish to remain in the nursing facility, they will be responsible for the full cost of the nursing home bed, unless they have a long-term care policy in place.
Under a long-term care policy, if you are unable to perform at least 2 of the daily activities of living (i.e., bathing, dressing, eating, etc.) for 90 days or more, or if you have Alzheimer’s, a long-term care insurance policy can assist with covering the expense of caregivers, with the monthly cost for assisted living, or with the cost of care in a nursing home. The coverage will vary by the plan/benefit coverage the individual selected when enrolling onto the long-term care insurance.
Should someone not currently have long-term care insurance, when they apply to the insurance carrier(s), they will have to undergo health history underwriting and could be declined coverage.
Long-term care insurance, like any insurance, you enroll onto coverage in hopes that you will not need it, but you are glad that it is there when you do need it.