"I am extremely optimistic about the next four years for the long term care insurance industry," declares Jesse Slome, executive director of the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance http://www.aaltci.org, the national trade group based in Los Angeles, CA. "Everything we see points to more awareness of the need to plan for this very likely risk and the fact that private insurance is a viable option for millions of Americans who are approaching their retirement years."
The national long term care insurance expert based his exuberance on several dynamics. "First, the economic outlook for many Americans has stabilized and that reassures people that we are not all going over the cliff," Slome notes. "When people feel secure they start to save and plan for their future, something we are already witnessing."
Slome notes that ultimately the Congress will need to tackle the out-of-control growth of Medicare and Medicaid. "Everybody in Washington has been dancing around this hot potato looking for the other political party to make a misstep but ultimately the issue is going to have to be addressed during this Administration,"
Finally, Slome predicts that interest rates will slowly start to increase. "I'm not an economist but I don't imagine you can just keep printing money and holding interest rates at these low rates forever," Slome told a group of industry sales professionals. "When interest rates return to what we typically look at as more normal values, new long term care insurers will enter or re-enter the marketplace and the cost of insurance will stop rising and quite likely lower making the product more attractive to larger numbers of people."
According to the Association some eight million Americans currently have long term care insurance purchased on an individual basis or through an employer offered benefit program. "A few hundred thousand new individuals purchase coverage each year and that number should steadily grow throughout the next four years," Slome concludes. "The commission approved as part of the recent Congressional action will issue their recommendations to Congress and the President but I suspect President Obama will have so many other important projects to undertake that little will come of it," he added. "That said, all increased awareness for the topic is important and will add to America's consciousness of this important issue."
Consumers seeking information on long-term care insurance costs http://www.aaltci.org/