We solve one of the most difficult challenges facing families today...caring for loved ones requiring essential personal home care services.

6 Safety Tips for Seniors and Caregivers During COVID-19 Reopening

Communities across the country are beginning to reopen after the initial surge of COVID-19, and many people are welcoming the opportunity to dine at a restaurant, get a haircut, or visit with family. However, due to their increased risk of coronavirus-related complications, some seniors - as well as their family caregivers - may be understandably concerned about resuming activities in public.

COVID-19 has caused numerous changes for people across the U.S., and older adults are no exception. Although the number of COVID-19 cases is declining in some parts of the country, public health experts continue to recommend taking precautions to reduce the spread of the virus and protect vulnerable individuals.

As communities begin to reopen, precautions such as wearing masks, social distancing, limiting trips to the store, increased use of technology, and new check-in procedures at the doctor's office could prove to be upsetting to your older loved one - especially if he or she is living with dementia, memory impairment, or Alzheimer's disease. Make sure to get the latest COVID-19 guidelines and timelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other public health agencies.

Transportation Resources Keeping Non-Driving Seniors on the Road

The freedom to get behind the wheel and travel in our vehicles is a luxury we sometimes take for granted. That is until the aging process takes its toll and forces senior drivers to give up their car keys and rely on other resources to help them get from place to place.

While they often decide to stop driving because of declining visual, physical, and cognitive conditions, seniors can feel a loss of control over their lives. They view their vehicles as a lifeline - a necessary link - to the outside world. The decision can also affect family members who struggle to provide rides for their senior loved ones to grocery stores, a friend's house and essential doctor appointments.

While taking away a senior's car keys can be a huge dilemma, it doesn't mean your loved one has to be confined at home or give up the trips they love and need.

Responding To 4 Common Dementia Accusations: Stealing, Poisoning, Being Held Prisoner

What to say when you're being falsely accused

People with  Alzheimer's or  dementia commonly accuse those close to them of theft, mistreatment, or other terrible things.

Cases of  true abuse do exist, but more often, these accusations are  completely false and are caused by  dementia paranoia or delusions.

It's important to keep reminding yourself that your older adult isn't saying these things on purpose to hurt you.

The damage in their brain has caused them to strongly believe things that we know aren't real.

Debunking the Myth Around "Self-Insuring" For Long Term Care

Myth: I can "self-insure" for long term care should I need it down the road.
Reality: There is no thing such as "self-insurance", only "self-funded" care.
Perhaps you've heard this very myth repeated from a family member or friend. Maybe you've even heard yourself say it aloud to others. However, insurance is fundamentally different from self-funded care because it acts as a form of risk management. Should you eventually need long term care, then you would on average pay much less for the total cost of all of your premiums than you would for the total out-of-pocket cost of long term care expenses. You would therefore take on all of the risk personally, instead of allowing the insurance company to take on some in exchange for monthly premium payments. This is the advantage of having insurance over self-funding.
If you find yourself very fortunate to already have liquid assets saved away to cover the entirety of potentially long-term, very expensive, complex care, that is one thing. But with the median annual cost in 2019 of a private room in a nursing home in the United States running at $102,200, an assisted living facility falling at $48,612, and a home health aide costing you $52,624 according to Genworth's Cost of Care survey, just be prepared for the realities of the exponentially high cost of self-funding before you decide that is the way to go.
Of course everyone hopes they will never actually need it, but long term care insurance provides that peace of mind that if you should, it will be there for you.
According to a study completed by Mutual of Omaha, the top five reasons people say that they purchase long term care insurance are:
  1. "To protect my assets."
  2. "Security/peace of mind."
  3. "To cover the cost of LTC services I might need in the future."
  4. "I don't want to be a financial burden to my family."
  5. "I know I'll need it."

Do any of these ring a bell? If so, it might just be worth investigating.
Long-term care coverage can also help with coordinating the care, providing support in making difficult decisions, giving assistance with deciding if other assets need to be used in conjunction with insurance, and if so, deciding what those would be. The bottom line is that long term care insurance can help take some of the pressure off of you and your family in a multitude of ways. Can you say that self-funding would do the same?
Keep in mind, a long term care policy can be designed to cover only a portion of the care, to be used in conjunction with your own funds, if that is preferable. There are many different policies that can be customized to your individual needs. After all, some coverage is better than no coverage!
Remember, there is no way to "self-insure", only to completely "self-fund" your care. At Baygroup Insurance, we're here to answer any questions you may have about this. Feel free to contact us at  http://www.baygroupinsurance.com/forms/contact-us or call us at 410-557-7907 for more guidance and education. Don't be afraid to reach out- there is no obligation, only support.

Melissa Barnickel is a CPA, a CLTC, (Certified in Long Term Care), and a licensed insurance broker specializing in 
Long Term Care Insurance (LTCi). Over the past 40 years she has worked for KPMG as an auditor and consultant and held significant financial positions such as Controller, Vice President of Finance and Leader of LTC Sales for two different insurance brokerages. She has worked in the LTCi industry for 25 years.
Hearts & Minds: Understanding Why People Buy Long-Term Care Insurance. Mutual of Omaha. 29 Feb 2020.
Cost of Care Survey 2019. Genworth. 29 Feb 2020.

Have a Safe and Happy 4th of July!