Long-term care planning if you are under the age of 50

| Nov 17, 2020 | Long-Term Care Planning |

While the goal is to make it to the end of one’s life without having to live in a nursing home or require medical assistance for the last several years, the truth is many people end up needing those things. Michigan residents who do not prepare now by doing some long-term care planning may only hurt themselves. What type of planning one needs to do depends on one’s age. This week, this column will address what planning individuals under the age of 50 might want to consider doing, sooner rather than later.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, there are three things a person can do to prepare for long-term care if he or she is under the age of 50. The first is to learn how to reduce one’s risk of needing long-term care. Poor brain health is one of the biggest reasons people end up in care facilities when they are older. There are steps one can take to help keep one’s brain healthier longer.

The second is figuring out how one will pay for long-term care. It is extremely expensive, and Medicare will only cover so much. Some individuals may be able to afford to pay privately, but others may want to look into long-term care insurance and/or Medicaid planning.

The third is to prepare an Advance Care Directive. This is a document that allows a person to state who may make medical decisions for him or her in the event he or she no longer can. It also is a way for someone to leave instructions for what care and lifesaving measures they deem acceptable. Without an Advance Care Directive, anyone, even a judge, may be put in charge of making such important decisions.

Long-term care planning may seem like something that one can put off until later in life, but the truth is, it is impossible to know when such care will be needed. It is better to have a plan in place now rather than chance not having one at all. Michigan residents who would like to learn more about long-term care planning or who would like to go through the process can turn to legal counsel for guidance and assistance putting their plans together.