Everyone in the baby-boom generation will turn 80 in just 12 years and many of them will need some type of long-term care. According to a new AARP study, that care could vary tremendously in cost and quality depending on where they live. The number of family caregivers is declining and in 2010, there were potentially seven caregivers for each person 80 years old or older. By the time all the baby boomers reach 80, there will be only four potential caregivers for each of them and those numbers are expected to decline.
The AARP study looked at 26 different variables in each state, including affordability and access to whether care is delivered in private homes or more expensive nursing homes. The study found that the states that encouraged more care at home scored higher. The states with the highest marks included Minnesota, Washington, Oregon, Colorado, and Alaska. The states scoring the worst were Indiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Kentucky.
According to the study, it’s becoming increasingly common for family members and other caregivers-who are often trained by nurses-to perform some medical tasks like giving injections or treating wounds. Experts suggest it would be beneficial to have national standards for training home care workers. Home care services on average take up 84 percent of the income of a typical older middle-income family, while nursing home care takes up 246 percent.
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