Genworth's 7th Annual Cost of Care Survey Finds that the Cost of Americans' Preferred Setting for Long Term Care is Rising Far Less than Other Options
Costs rise slower for in-home care than nursing homes or assisted living
Richmond, Va. (April 27, 2010) /PRNewswire/ — While long term care costs continue to rise nationally, the cost for in-home care is rising at a much slower pace. According to Genworth's 2010 Cost of Care Survey, the cost to receive care in the home has risen at an annual rate of just 1.7 percent over the past five years. That compares to annual increases of 6.7 percent for assisted living facilities, and 4.5 percent for a private room in a nursing home, over the same period.1
This is important to note given that a majority of Americans say they wish to receive care in the home. According to another Genworth survey conducted earlier this year, when asked to identify the setting most preferred to receive long term care, 78 percent chose the home, 18 percent chose assisted living, and only 2 percent selected a nursing home.2 For most people, the ability to live independently is critical to maintaining quality of life. Many may be surprised to learn that in-home care could even be their most cost-effective choice.
"Long term care is not just about nursing homes anymore. Care options have expanded dramatically over the past several years to include a far greater choice of settings that reflect the ways in which individuals prefer to receive care," said Buck Stinson, President, U.S. Life Insurance Products at Genworth. In fact, 73% of Genworth's initial benefit claims are for home health care.3
Nearly two-thirds of Americans over age 65 will need long term care at home or through adult day health care, or care in an assisted living facility or nursing home. And while most people think of long term care as impacting only those in their senior years, 40 percent of people currently receiving long term care services are ages 18 to 64.4
Now in its 35th year as a leading provider of long term care insurance, Genworth's Cost of Care Survey helps raise public awareness of the various options available beyond just nursing home facilities, and the costs associated with each.
2010 Cost of Care Survey: Key Findings
Looking across the long term care services landscape, Genworth's 2010 Cost of Care Survey identified some key trends that have emerged in the last five years. Overall, while the cost of care among facility-based providers has steadily increased, home care costs remained relatively flat.
Nursing Home Costs Continue to Rise
In 2005 the median annual rate for a private nursing home room was $60,225, compared with the 2010 median annual rate of $75,190. This means that Americans can expect to pay approximately $14,965 more per year today for a nursing home than they had to pay in 2005.
Home Care Costs Holding Steady
In contrast, rates charged by home care providers for "non-skilled" services have not experienced significant growth over the past five years. The national hourly private pay median rate charged by a licensed home health agency for a home health aide was $17.50 in 2005, while the 2010 hourly rate has gradually risen to $19. Home care rates have remained in check partly due to increased competition among agencies, the availability of unskilled labor, and the absence of costs associated with maintaining stand-alone health care facilities.
The Least and Most Affordable States for In-Home Care
Genworth's 2010 Cost of Care Survey revealed that Alaska, Minnesota and Rhode Island are the most expensive states for home care, at a median rate of $25 per hour for a home health aide provided by a state-licensed agency. The most affordable states are Alabama and West Virginia, at a median rate of $15 per hour.
The site offers a variety of educational tools to help consumers:
- Find specific cost information by state and care type, for 436 regions
- Compare costs side-by-side for up to four locations
- Calculate the cost of care 10, 15, 20, 25 and 30 years out
- Share comparisons and calculations with family, friends, or a financial professional
Let's Talk: Conversations That Make a Difference
To help families plan more effectively for potential long term care needs, Genworth Financial launched its national "Let's Talk" campaign in 2009. "The first step in developing a comprehensive long term care plan is to speak with loved ones about the impact that a long term illness would have on them, emotionally and financially," added Mr. Stinson. "Genworth's 2010 Cost of Care Survey, when used in conjunction with the resources available at caringtalk.com, provides families with a complete tool kit for mapping out a long term care plan that addresses these concerns."
About Genworth's 2010 Cost of Care Survey:
Genworth's Cost of Care Survey, is the most comprehensive study of its kind, covering nearly 13,000 long term care providers in 436 regions nationwide. It surveys the cost of long term care across the U.S. to help Americans plan for the potential costs associated with the various types of care available in their preferred location and setting. CareScout, acquired by Genworth in June 2008, has conducted the survey since 2004. Genworth's 2010 Cost of Care Survey was conducted during January, February and March 2010.
About Genworth Financial
Genworth Financial, Inc. is a leading Fortune 500 global financial security company. Genworth employs approximately 6,000 people with a presence in more than 25 countries. Its products and services help meet the investment, protection, retirement and lifestyle needs of more than 15 million customers. Genworth operates through three segments: Retirement & Protection, U.S. Mortgage Insurance and International. Its products and services are offered through financial intermediaries, advisors, independent distributors and sales specialists. Genworth Financial, which traces its roots back to 1871, became a public company in 2004 and is headquartered in Richmond, Virginia. For more information, visit Genworth.com. From time to time Genworth releases important information via postings on its corporate Web site. Accordingly, investors and other interested parties are encouraged to enroll to receive automatic email alerts and Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feeds regarding new postings. Enrollment information is found under the "Investors" section of Genworth.com.
Headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts, CareScout helps Americans across the United States find quality care providers for their long term care needs. As an objective source for this provider information, CareScout, now part of the Genworth Financial family of companies, developed the nation's first quality-of-care ratings system for certified nursing homes and home care providers. Large employers, risk underwriters and families rely on CareScout's proprietary ratings system, the CareScout network and its database of more than 90,000 providers including nursing homes, assisted living facilities and home care agencies to help find and arrange the most appropriate care for loved ones. For more information, visit carescout.com.
1Percentage increase represents the compound annual inflation rate for surveys conducted from 2005 to 2010.
2America Talks: Protecting Our Families' Financial Futures, an online survey of 2,939 U.S. consumers, conducted between January 12 -15, 2010, by Age Wave/Harris Interactive, and sponsored by the Genworth Financial companies.
3Genworth Financial companies Long Term Care Claims Experience Data, December 1974 through 6/30/09.
4U.S. Department of Health and Human Services National Clearinghouse for Long Term Care Information, 10/22/08.