HHS Launches New Web Site Promoting Long-Term Care Planning Launched

HHS’ Assistant Secretary for Aging Josefina G. Carbonell announced a new Web site that will make it easier for consumers to get the information they need to plan for long-term care. The National Clearinghouse for Long-Term Care Information Web site provides comprehensive information about long-term care planning, services and financing options, along with tools to help people begin the planning process.

The clearinghouse Web site is designed to increase public awareness about the risks and costs of long-term care and the potential need for services, and to provide objective information to help people plan for the future. The clearinghouse Web site was designed by HHS’ Administration on Aging (AoA), Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE).

“The National Clearinghouse for Long-Term Care Information Web site is an important step toward giving consumers the tools they need to take personal responsibility for planning for their future long-term care needs,” HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt said.

The Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 mandates that the Clearinghouse contain the following: objective information to help consumers decide whether to purchase long-term care insurance or to pursue other private market alternatives that pay for long-term care; information about states with long-term care partnerships under Medicaid; and information about the availability and limitations of coverage for long-term care under Medicaid. The Web site features a number of resources to help individuals start the planning process, including interactive tools such as a savings calculator, contact information for a range of programs and services, and real-life examples of how individuals have planned successfully.

The National Clearinghouse for Long-Term Care Information Web site helps support the principles of the “Choices for Independence Initiative,” included in the recently reauthorized Older Americans Act (OAA), signed into law by President Bush in October.

“The new OAA helps empower individuals and supports better planning, improved home and community-based long-term care options, and more flexible and consumer-friendly systems that allow Americans to remain vibrant and independent,” Assistant Secretary Carbonell said.

The new Web site also supports the “Own Your Future” education campaign, a joint federal-state initiative designed to increase consumer awareness about planning for long-term care. HHS recently announced new federal-state partnerships with several states designed to help Americans take an active role in planning ahead for their future long-term care needs.

“The National Clearinghouse for Long-Term Care Information Web site is an essential component of the ‘Own Your Future’ campaign,” CMS Acting Administrator Leslie V. Norwalk said. “Users can easily find information about services, resources and finances to help them plan for future long-term care needs.”

For more information about the “Own Your Future” campaign and the National Clearinghouse for Long-Term Care Information, please visit www.longtermcare.gov

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