Private Market Wrong Model for Long-Term Care Coverage
"The problem with private, for-profit, long-term care insurance is that insurers aren't in the business of ensuring that all older Americans have fair and timely access to services," Madonna Meyer and Pamela Herd, co-authors of "Market Friendly or Family Friendly: The State and Gender Inequality in Old Age," write in a San Francisco Chronicle opinion piece.
The authors argue for moving "from a purely for-profit market provision of long-term care insurance toward a federal universal plan," such as expanding "Medicare coverage of nursing homes and community-based long-term care."
"An alternative would be to create a Medicare Part E that provides mandatory universal long-term insurance coverage, funded through the payroll tax," Meyer and Herd write.
The authors conclude: "It's time to move beyond yet another investigation of how industry fraud and mismanagement harm older people's lives, to act on the realization that the profit-driven private market simply cannot handle long-term care insurance alone" (Meyer/Herd, San Francisco Chronicle, 11/16).