Weekend Reading: Long-Term Care: Which Retirees Will Need It, and How Much?

This article appears as part of Casey Weade's Weekend Reading for Retirees series. Every Friday, Casey highlights four hand-picked articles on trending retirement topics and delivers them straight to your email inbox. Get on the list here.
Senior woman standing by the window retirement c 2021 04 06 17 55 55 utc Senior woman standing by the window retirement c 2021 04 06 17 55 55 utc
Weekend Reading

Wondering if you’ll need long-term care in retirement? A new study by the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College reports that at a high level, about a quarter of retirees will require long-term care, while 20 percent will not.


Digging deeper: Furthermore, when it comes to the average 65-year-old, the study estimated a seven in 10 chance of developing a need for long-term care support and services at some point in their life. For a more in-depth look, the research also broke out the level of care needed into four categories: None, low, moderate and severe, in addition to individual specifics, such as marital status, education, race and self-reported health status. Here are some of the top takeaways:

📌Wealthier, married individuals were less likely to need long-term care versus unmarried individuals, although not by much

📌65-year-old men (unmarried and married) had a 23 percent probability of needing severe long-term care support

📌Married women of all ages had a 20 percent chance of needing severe long-term care support, while unmarried women had a 27 percent chance

📌28 percent of individuals with some high school or a high school education had severe long-term care needs, while 22 percent of individuals with a college education had no need for support

📌African Americans had a 33 percent rate of severe long-term care needs, while Hispanics and Caucasians had a 23 percent chance

Plan appropriately: People always want me to tell them whether they need long-term care coverage or not. The statistics are valuable to share, but the reality is, you’ll either need it or you won’t. Although 25 percent might seem like a low number, it can be a disastrous one if you find yourself there.