Long-Term Care, Medical, and Disability: What Does Your Insurance Cover?
When it comes to caring for your personal needs—especially later in life—there are several different kinds of insurance out there that might contribute towards the expenses, depending on your plan and coverage. The three types of insurance that can most often help with care expenses are long-term care insurance, medical insurance, and disability insurance. What are the differences between these and what might they cover? Keep reading to learn more.
Long-Term Care Insurance
Long-term care insurance is designed to help cover the expenses related to personal care, primarily for those with a disability or for the elderly. For the most part, long-term care insurance is intended to cover services, not products. This includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- Nursing home residency
- Assisted living facilities
- Adult daycare expenses
- In-home care
- Nursing care
- Hospice facilities and hospice care
- Physical therapy
- Occupational therapy
- Speech therapy
- Help with daily activities
If an individual requires care due to an injury, disability, chronic illness, or the general effects of aging, long-term care insurance can help to pay for those expenses. Despite the name, long-term care insurance can cover both long-term care expenses as well as short-term care that falls into the above categories as an individual recovers from illness or injury. The key thing to know here is that this type of insurance is designed to help cover custodial and personal care expenses, as opposed to actual medical care.
Long-term care plans can vary widely, but are typically designed to provide individuals with a daily “allowance” towards their care. This can be used towards any qualifying expenses. In some cases, this can actually include durable medical equipment (DME) and other essential items for at-home care. However, you should discuss this with your insurance provider to find out exactly what your plan will cover.
Unlike long-term care insurance, disability insurance is not actually designed to help cover the expenses associated with developing a disability. Rather, this type of insurance is designed to protect your ability to work and earn a paycheck. Should you be injured or fall ill enough that you are unable to work, your disability insurance would begin paying out benefits equal to a previously agreed-upon percentage of your average paycheck.
Of course, as with the paycheck you previously earned, your disability insurance benefits can be used in any way you wish. There are no limits regarding qualifying expenses, as there are with long-term care insurance, so you don’t need to be concerned about that. This type of insurance simply provides valuable financial security should the primary income-earner no longer be able to work. You can then choose to use any portion of that disability income towards paying for necessary care.
This type of insurance is one that most people are familiar with in some capacity—and which most people recognize as being much more complicated than it appears at first glance. Medical insurance plans can vary immensely in what they will cover, and in most cases, some type of copay is to be expected.
However, medical insurance will quite often cover at least a portion of many types of DME. The key is to ensure that you receive a prescription for the equipment you need from your doctor. Whether you need a CPAP machine for your sleep apnea, a mobility aid for your declining mobility, or any other device for your personal care, getting a prescription is the first step to having that device covered by your insurance. Make sure that your prescription includes the device you need, the condition it’s for, whether it’s a temporary or permanent need, and your doctor’s name and signature.
Here at Medical XPress, we are happy to work with your insurance—whether it’s long-term care insurance or medical insurance—to provide you with any device you need for your personal care. Bring in your prescription, and we’ll help you find the right product to fit your medical and personal care needs.