There are officially eighty-four days left in the deadline for the new Congressional commission to be able to find solutions for long term care insurance coverage. They need to figure out how they are going to be able to fund this form of insurance so that people will be able to continue getting the coverage that they need for their older years. The Commission on Long Term Care is an offspring of the January change that averted the fiscal cliff mix of tax hikes and spending cuts. Congress and the White House had agreed to end the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports Act, which would have provided a public option for long term care insurance with the ObamaCare plan. Most of the financial issues with the act didn’t seem like they would be a reasonable option.

The new panel was created to help suggest improvements to how long term care is going to be financed and delivered to the senior population. The panel is composed of around 14 nonpolitical healthcare experts. There are nine appointed by Democratic legislators and the White House and six that are are appointed by Republican lawmakers. It is operating on a fairly tight time frame and a limited budget, which is making it more challenging to be able to find solutions to some of the most demanding and common problems that long term care has posed over the decades. The commission just convened its first meeting in June.

Although the odds of being able to find a breakthrough for these issues are fairly small, there is that deadline for the need for solutions and answers. Long term care services are used to support the nonmedical and medical needs of people who have chronic illnesses. It is not restricted to older people, but this is the demographic that is is most commonly used by. The demand for long term care services is only going to continue to rise as the baby boom generation keeps aging. The Medicaid program pays for around half of all long term care, but that’s only for patients who are able to spend themselves down to low income levels or those who receive Social Security disability payments. Medicare, which is the primary healthcare insurance program for Americans who are over 65, is only able to cover 100 days of skilled nursing care or rehab if it has been ordered by a doctor.

In the meanwhile, the commercial long term care insurance market has been having a heap of struggles. Carriers have been disappearing from the market and many policyholders have been hit with hikes in their rates for their premiums. It is undeniable that long term care insurance coverage is necessary, but it’s up to the commission to figure out a way for the country to finance it so that it’s not on the backs of the policyholders. Many are hoping that there will be new plans and new options for elders and the aging when the commission presents final decisions in October.


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