Insurance industry says long-term care insurance has grown quickly

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The long-term care insurance market grew an average 18% annually between 1987 and 2002, according to an insurance industry-sponsored survey released Wednesday. America's Health Insurance Plans presented Long-Term Care Insurance in 2002 at the launch of AHIP Long-Term Care Champions Network.

AHIP's surveyed 104 respondents that sold more than 900,000 long-term care insurance policies in 2002, the largest number sold in one year since 1987 when the market was first analyzed.

From 1987-2002, half of the individual policies were sold in only 10 states: California, Florida, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Washington.

The industry recommended the federal government enhance tax incentives for long-term care insurance purchase, according to the report. Such incentives would be establishing an above-the-line deduction for long-term care insurance premiums; permitting use of individual retirement account and 401(k) funds for the insurance; and encouraging state tax incentives.