I am a 21 year old CNA health worker who has been working at nursing homes for the past three years. On a daily basis I see issues that arise with long-term care and have devastating outcomes for patients. The cost, in particular, to stay in a nursing home and get the essential care is a very steep price for many of my patients to afford. This ultimately ends up negatively affecting their health.
I’ve worked with and have bonded with many of my patients, and have seen many of them leave the nursing home because they simply could not afford it. Long-term care insurance is often not perceived as important when you are under 50 years old, but once you require long-term care it becomes apparent how expensive it can be without any coverage. Many patients simply just run out of money and can’t pay for their care any longer, therefore being forced to leave the nursing home facility. More importance needs to be placed on how long-term care can be affordable for an individual who earned an average income throughout their life. Patients become financially depleted and usually don’t have any type of insurance that can help them with the expenses. I’ve come to realize that purchasing insurance is less attractive because the premiums are so high, therefore individuals will opt to not seek out long-term care insurance.
I understand that funding an extreme change in the cost of long-term care insurance would be a difficult task, but I also see the desperation in my patient’s eyes when they realize they cannot afford to keep getting proper treatment. It is guaranteed that everyone will age, it is guaranteed that as populations get older some of them will require the care of a long-term care facility such as a nursing home, so in order to meet these needs the government has to curve the increasing price of insurance. It is our duty as health care workers to do everything we can for our patient’s comfort and well-being, and a cheaper long-term care insurance reform is an excellent way to aid aging America.