Medicare - Caregivers Perspective Overview
Due to the financial burden home care places on families and loved ones, Medicare insurance provides $190 billion dollars for long-term comprehensive care coverage that includes an in-home caregiver for the elderly and disabled. According to the 2010 Census, the population of 15.7 million consisted of 48% disabled adults and seniors 65 and older not capable of living independently. Therefore, 15.7 million people x .48 = 7.5 million disabled adults and seniors 65 plus that have difficulty with independent living. The next census won't be completed until 2020.
Based on the logical assumption that those struggling with independent living are incapable of making decisions and/or are severely physically/mentally disabled, these individuals will seek the advice of a younger relative, family member or friend to advice them on the Medicare plan that best suits his/her needs.
Most often, family, friends or neighbors become caregivers to an elderly or disabled Medicare recipient. 75% of all caregivers are 49-year old females. 5% of these caregivers are providing care to a loved one. Based on the latter, it is safe to assume that care giving responsibilities most often fall on daughters. 48% of caregivers range from 18-49 years old.
SEARCH OF BENEFITS
Medicare's system directs caregivers who are looking to help their loved ones or care recipients receive medical insurance.
Most caregivers are more concerned about getting the most comprehensive coverage for their loved one while the enrolled might be more focused on the costs of the plan. Most of the time, the enrollee pays for minimal coverage which leads to less and/or limited care and family members end up paying for the costs. Medicare provides comprehensive guidelines specific to caregivers seeking to enroll their loved one in a Medicare program.
Therefore, there is no need to assume the role of 65 year old as there are plenty of comprehensive guidelines specific to caregivers seeking to enroll their loved one in a Medicare program.
Long Term Care
If a doctor certifies that a patient is home bound, Medicare provides long-term care coverage. However, that care is limited to 35 hours of home aid per week.
According to the Family Caregiver Alliance, 5.8-7 million people provide care to a person who is 65 or older who needs help with daily activities. Among this older population, there is a greater than 50% chance that some type of long-term care will be required at some point in time. In time, a Medicare recipient's medical condition will determine whether he/she will need additional financial assistance, financial coordination, or more involved in-home care.
Only 9% of long-term care recipients are using paid services such as in-home skilled nurses, home health aides, or private nursing homes. Therefore, 91% of the long-term care is provided by unpaid caregivers.
In conclusion, the majority of caregivers providing home assistance to elderly or disabled Medicare recipients are family members, friends or neighbors. Their ability to decipher the best plan for their loved one makes a vast difference between having a better quality of life versus saving money.