Long-term care insurance practices subject of committee hearing

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Long-term care insurance practices subject of committee hearing
Long-term care insurance practices subject of committee hearing
The House Energy and Commerce subcommittee on oversight and investigations Thursday explored new worrisome findings regarding rate-setting and claims-settling practices in the long-term care insurance industry.

A report by the Government Accountability Office said that long-term care insurance rate increases occur almost arbitrarily depending on when and where insurance was purchased and which company issued the policy. There is also no standard time frame for payment of claims, according to the report. Some states simply require companies to pay claims in a timely manner without defining the word "timely." Long-term care insurance is becoming a pressing topic as baby boomers age.

State insurance commissioners, healthcare advocates and financial advisers convened in Washington Thursday to discuss the findings of the report and possible solutions to the problems associated with long-term care insurance rates and claims payments. Up to 30 states are expected to combine private insurance plans and their own Medicaid coverage by the end of the year, according to the Senate Special Committee on Aging.