Even though advocates for senior citizens, nursing homes, and other healthcare professionals all have emphasized the need to plan for issues related to the end of life early on, a new study at the University of California, San Francisco, found that more than one-quarter of American senior citizens have never had even a conversation about Long-Term Care. The study involved more than 2,100 Medicare beneficiaries aged 65 and older. While 38% of these individuals reported having discussions about each element of advanced care planning, including end-of-life care, powers of attorney, and other advanced directives, 27% reported that they had never discussed any of these elements. Furthermore, 60% of the individuals in the study reported discussions on end-of-life care in general, 50% reported discussing powers of attorney, and 52% reported discussions on other advanced directives.
Some characteristics of the individuals studied caused the percentages for each element to differ by as much as 35%. For example, those individuals who were between the ages of 65 and 74, African-American or Hispanic, and individuals with less education and income, were far less likely to discuss end-of-life planning than other individuals in the study. Furthermore, older Spanish-speaking Hispanics had the lowest rates of end-of-life planning with respect to all three elements. Likewise, older adults with dementia were less likely to discuss end-of-life care than older adults without dementia.
All too often, individuals ignore or put off the need to talk about end-of-life care and what they truly want to happen in this regard. The Spokane asset protection lawyers of Elder Law Group PLLC are experienced in ensuring that you will be able to preserve your assets and quality of life, but still receive the high quality care that you need and deserve, right up until the end of your life. Making decisions about how to best protect your assets, how to finance any medical or Long-Term Care that may become necessary, and how you want to live out the end of your life is not an easy task. You need legal guidance to help you determine exactly what is best for you, based on your personal situation. We know the difficulties that you are facing, and we know how to help. Contact Elder Law Group PLLC today and learn about the options that are available to you.