There are many terms tossed around in the long term care world. Activities of daily living, benefit triggers, and cognitive impairment. Contingent nonforfeiture, indemnity, and spending down. But there are two terms that are very important to know and to understand as we get older, plan for our retirements and consider purchasing long term care: Sandwich Generation and Silver Tsunami.
The Sandwich Generation
You probably know who the Baby Boomers are – people born after the end of World War II generally between the years of 1946 and 1964. The U.S. Census Bureau says there are 76.4 million baby boomers. But did you know they’re also referred to as the Sandwich Generation? The term Sandwich Generation refers to the fact that this group is essentially taking care of their older parents and their younger children, at the same time. For those having to take unpaid time off work, this affects their retirement planning and savings.
The Impending Silver Tsunami
The Silver Tsunami is a term used to describe the overwhelming number of Baby Boomers turning 65 every day, and how they will overwhelm every aspect of elder care in the country. In 2015 there were 47.8 million people in the U.S. over the age of 65, and by 2060 that number will rise to 98.2 million. Every day 10,000 baby boomers turn 65. So why are these two terms so important?
“Every day 10,000 baby boomers turn 65.”
The Importance of Understanding
Medicare and Medicaid are not prepared for the Sandwich Generation’s Silver Tsunami. The tsunami is going to make landfall in just a few short years and most individuals are sadly lacking in retirement and long term care planning. The percentage of people over the age of 65 who will need some form of long term care in their lifetime is 52%, and they’re expected to need care an average of 2 years. In 2017 the national annual average cost of home health care was $50,336 and that number will only get larger.
What You can do about it
So now we know what the sandwich generation is, when the silver tsunami will hit, how overwhelming it will be, and how expensive it could potentially get. What can we do about it? Well, for starters you can consider options for long term care. You can speak to an industry expert contracted with the top carriers and licensed in multiple states. They can talk to you about your current health, your family history, and your retirement goals. Together you can explore short term care, long term care, and several hybrid life and annuity products. The best thing you can do is to have a plan, and LTC Consumer can help.