The most comprehensive study of American health trends in 15 years was published this week in the Journal of the American Medical Association. It reveals what most of us know from our own experience: the average American is living longer, but not necessarily better. From 1990 to 2010, average lifespan increased from 75.2 years in 1990 to 78.2. However, the number of years a person typically spends in ill health also increased, from 9.4 years to 10.1 years.
These are just numbers. Behind the statistics are real people and families coping with tremendous health, psychological and often, economic burdens. The cost of long-term care can decimate most families' life savings in no time; this is the number one concern of many of my clients, what keeps them up at night.
No one has come up with a solution that will ensure a long life and lifelong good health. But there are steps you can take to protect your nest egg and your family if not all those extra years turn out to be as healthy as you hope. Talk over your concerns with a certified elder law attorney.
Read the Wall St Journal's summary of the study here: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324694904578597444105321914.html?mod=WSJ_hpp_sections_health