There is a lot of talk in Congress and with Health Care Reform regarding post-acute care and the differences between it and long-term care. This has been a confusing issue for many people and rightfully so. There are several issues that make this an important long-term care concern in health care reform. In an effort to help you understand and plan for long-term care, these are some aspects of this concern that you should be aware of. They will affect how you look at long-term care and how you view your long-term care insurance choices.

What defines post-acute for LTC coverage?

Post-acute relates to when the long-term care was determined as medically necessary. Though in medical circles it is a definition. For insurance purposes and coverage it is something different. The term post-acute is attached to someone who has developed an illness or injury that requires long-term care directly related to an outpatient or inpatient procedure. This may be confusing to some people, but we will explain in a moment.

Why is Post-Acute Granted Coverage over Standard LTC?

Many insurance providers consider post-acute coverage to be a short-term form of long term care. This means that if you are diagnosed with an illness that falls under post-acute categories, your long term care will last less than five years. Coverage for a standard long-term care illness could exceed more than five years or be less than five years. Since it is something that cannot be determined easily, and the post-acute can, then the post-acute diagnosis receives the care.

Understanding the Post-Acute Difference

If you are confused regarding what would be covered by your current insurance, here is a quick breakdown. If you are in the hospital for an inpatient or outpatient procedure and the procedure results in a long term care issue, then that issue would be covered under the post-acute category. If you have an illness that is not a result of an inpatient or outpatient procedure, such as memory loss care, then it would not be covered.

How LTC Insurance Helps

The bottom line is, no one knows what they will face in the future. You may have a need for a procedure that results in a long-term care issue. You may go your entire adult life without the need for long-term care insurance. You may be in your late 60s or 70s and find yourself diagnosed with memory loss. If that is the case, you will not be covered under current insurance and you will need LTC insurance to meet the gap. If you prepare financially, emotionally, and physically for retirement also prepare for your possible long-term care by purchasing long-term care insurance. It may be a safety net, but it is a safety net that provides you with coverage regardless of a post-acute status. It covers your daily needs and some other needs depending on the policy. You will be covered, safe, and prepared.