“Caring for a Family Member Can Take a Toll on One’s Career”

Caring for a Family Member Can Take a Toll on One’s Career,” Advisor Magazine

“According to LIMRA research, there are 43 million Americans currently acting as an unpaid caregiver for a family member. Advances in medicine and better lifestyle choices have helped more Americans live longer but many of these older Americans often need caregiving help – and oftentimes it falls on the family to provide it. LIMRA wanted to learn how caregiving for a family member impacted their family’s finances. Aside from the out-of-pocket costs associated with caring for a loved one, which AARP estimates is almost $7000 annually, there is often a cost in terms of lost opportunity for those who work outside the home. New findings from LIMRA suggest half of unpaid caregivers work full-time outside the home. For many of these individuals, the demands of taking care of a loved one have impacted their career. The study found 4 in 10 had to take an unpaid leave of absence or decrease the number of hours they worked because of the demands of caring for a family member. Three in ten say they have turned down a promotion and a quarter say they have lost job benefits, such as medical, retirement, insurance, etc. because they had to cut back their hours due to their caregiving responsibilities.”

LTC Comment (from Stephen A. Moses, President, Center for Long-Term Care Reform):

Whom should we thank for this sorry state of affairs? Well, maybe Medicaid. It made nursing home care easy to get, thus impeding the private market for home care and crowding out private financing alternatives like home equity conversion and insurance. Good intentions often have unintended consequences.