December 22, 2016
David Littell

Long-term care planning is complex and the costs and challenges may not be that obvious at first glance. Those working in the elder care services profession know these issues well. Financial planners also need to have a deep understanding of all the relevant concerns for several reasons. First, so that they can paint a realistic picture to their clients so that they will be more motivated to plan. Second, so that they are sure to include all of the relevant concerns when building a comprehensive long-term care plan.

In our new video playlist “The Complexity of Long-Term Care Planning,” Dr. Sandra Timmermann, gerontologist and director of the MetLife Mature Market Institute for 15 years, addresses three areas not often discussed: the costs to caregivers, the challenge of hiring quality care, and the importance of care coordination.

The first video discusses the hidden financial costs of long-term care — the cost to family caregivers. We learn that non-paid family caregivers lose $330,000 on average in wages and benefits due to the caregiving activity. The second video discusses non-financial costs to family members providing long-term care. We learn about the stresses involved and some steps that family members can take to reduce the burden.

The third video discusses the challenges of hiring paid long-term care providers. On the micro level, Dr. Timmermann provides advice on how to find health care aids. On the macro level, there is also a discussion of the bigger issue of the coming shortage of workers as the pool of available workers gets smaller and the needs of the aging baby boomers will continue to increase. The fourth video discusses another issue that can likely be forgotten — the importance of coordinating medical, family, and community support in long-term care situations. We learn who is providing care coordination, and what it entails.

Finally, if you want to dive deeper into these subjects, be sure to read Dr. Timmermann’s excellent paper, The 65 Plus Age Wave and the Caregiving Conundrum: The Often Forgotten Piece of the Long‐Term Care Puzzle.