Many Americans understand importance of long-term care planning but don't act on it, study finds

Share this content:

Sixty-five percent of Americans know that long-term care planning is an important, cost-saving action. But only 44% of them have started taking any steps to prepare for unanticipated costs, according to a new consumer study from Lincoln Financial.

One of the mistakes Americans are making, according to analysts involved in the study, is thinking that investments and social programs such as Social Security and Medicare will cover long-term care and additional unexpected expenses. The study reports that the average U.S. family's savings is $120,000. One year in a nursing home can cost $60,000, a cost not necessarily covered by Social Security and Medicare.

The Lincoln study did show that Americans who help oversee the care of an elderly loved one are more aware of the economic burden of aging. Ninety-three percent of these caregivers used their own income to help pay for care, while 72% personally provided care in the loved one's home.