A new study released this month from MetLife examines the costs to working caregivers for providing long term support to loved ones.
The costs are staggering.
The report estimates that for women (who make up the majority of long term care givers) the lost wages from working less hours amounts to $120,616, with another estimated $64,433 lost in Social Security benefits. The total estimated loss amounts to over $185,000 in lost income. If the care giver leaves the workforce altogether it’s closer to a $300,000 impact.
Since most care givers are in their 50’s, the resulting financial impacts include less money for retirement, and can mean a lessened ability to help children with major expenses such as college tuition or weddings.
Overall, the report paints a difficult picture for care givers. In addition to lost wages, the report estimates out of pocket expenses of upwards of $5k a year, increased stress, less time with family, and about 14% of women care givers having fair or poor health themselves.
The facts in the report highlight why solving the long term care situation in the U.S. is so critical at this point. The need for long term care insurance to help reduce the burden, changes in public policy (such as advocated by the “3in4 Need More” Campaign), and expanded care options with consistent quality of service are at an all time high as the Baby Boomer Generation ages.
You can download and review the full report here.
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