U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., has introduced 3 bills that relate to long term care.
One bill, designated the Long Term Care Integrity Act, S. 1626, would create an independent third-party review board to allow consumers to appeals LTC claims denied by their insurer.
A second bill, the Long Term Care Insurance Consumer Right-to-Know Act, S. 1636, would require LTC insurers to provide consumers with a clear, one-page, uniform disclosure form when they buy an LTC policy.
The third bill, the Americans Giving Care to Elders Act, S. 1604, would grant family caregivers a tax credit for the costs of attending to an aging or ailing relative. The legislation would allow families to qualify for a tax credit up to $1,200 per year for elder care. The tax credit would begin to phase out for families making over $120,000 per year.
The AGE Act would also establish a clearinghouse of information about best practices and promising advances in providing extended care to family members.
The bills are cosponsored by Sen. Herb Kohl, D-Wisc., and Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md..
Klobuchar's proposal to set up an LTC claim review board is "a solution in search of a problem," says Jesse Slome, executive director of the American Association for Long Term Care Insurance, Westlake Village, Calif. "Insurers are not in the business of denying claims, and [they] paid some $8.5 billion to 180,000 individuals last year."
"The industry has to work harder to get that message to the public," Slome says.