Steve Roeder CLU, is a longtime chamber member and current board member.

Steve Roeder CLU, is a longtime chamber member and current board member.

He is an associate with Gardiner Allen DeRoberts LLC, a full-service, locally owned, independent agency. The agency services all lines of insurance including personal and commercial as well as employee benefits, life and disability. Steve has been a UA resident for about 40 years. When asked about long-term care in the insurance world, Steve said, "Long-term care has become an important part of current financial planning."

Medicaid foots the bill for more than 40 percent of nursing home costs and 25 percent of home health costs in the US. But only low-income individuals with minimal financial assets qualify. With many states facing growing budget deficits, consumers are encouraged to consider long-term care insurance as a way to help protect Medicaid budgets.

In 2005, Congress passed the Deficit Reduction Act, which lifted a moratorium on partnerships between states and private long-term insurance companies.

Many states, including Ohio, have a partnership program. Generally speaking, if an individual meets the qualifications for Medcaid and has a qualified individual partnership, long-term policy, Medicaid steps in after his or her private insurance benefit is exhausted.

The good news is, under the partnership program, the individual gets to keep assets, dollar for dollar, for the amount of benefits the long-term care policy paid, versus spending down.

Proper planning for long-term care is necessary. Statistics show it is very likely a majority of us will live a long life. It is also very likely we will need long-term care. There are many professionals, including attorneys, accountants and insurance representatives educated in long-term care and Medicaid planning.