Four Steps to Reforming Long-Term Care | National Center for Policy Analysis | NCPA

Four Steps to Reforming Long-Term Care

Although it is optional, every state provides a long-term care benefit through its Medicaid program--and not just to the poor. Medicaid is paying for the long-term care of a growing number of middle-income seniors, and this is one of the fastest-growing areas of state spending.

At the time they retire, most seniors do not meet Medicaid income and asset tests for long-term care coverage. But by "spending down" their assets, over time a great many eventually do qualify. In fact, an entire industry of attorneys practicing "elder law" has sprung up in recent years to help seniors transfer assets in order to qualify.

The following four steps would help solve the problems of state long-term care aid.

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