My mom was only 62 when she had a life-changing stroke. We were shocked to find out that private health insurance doesn’t cover long-term care services like having a home care aide help with dressing, bathing and meals. Neither does Medicare. Bottom line, you are left high and dry if you don’t have a corporate long-term care insurance policy and continue to pay expensive premiums every month, even after you retire.
I’m proud to be represented by our state Sen. Annette Cleveland, D-Vancouver, who has shown her leadership by supporting the WA Cares program. WA Cares will provide affordable, flexible benefits for working Washingtonians to help pay for the costs of long-term care services. And if a family member cuts back their hours at work or leaves their job to be your caregiver, you can even use your WA Cares benefits to pay them.
No, WA Cares isn’t perfect, but it’s a giant step in the right direction. Lawmakers should move quickly to pass bills that will improve the program by exempting certain workers who live out of state, and allowing workers who are near retirement and not fully vested to still be able to get prorated benefits.