The Long-Term Care Partnership Program allows purchasers of private long-term care insurance to qualify eventually for Medicaid coverage of long-term care services without having to meet the same asset requirements as other Medicaid applicants. Partnership programs began in 1987 in four states – New York, California, Connecticut, and Indiana.
The 2005 Deficit Reduction Act (DRA) makes it easier for states to establish Partnership programs, and many more states have plans to create them. But the expansion of the Partnership program raises a series of questions. What are the different models for coverage and how do Partnership policies differ from the long-term care insurance that can be purchased through other avenues? How affordable are Partnership policies and who are the purchasers? Has the program saved Medicaid any money so far, and is it expected to do so in the future? For consumers who exhaust their private benefits, does Medicaid coverage pick up where their Partnership policies leave off? Are the policies portable between states? Does the DRA provision that makes individuals with more than $500,000 of home equity ineligible for Medicaid also apply to Partnership policyholders? Are the estates of Partnership policyholders subject to Medicaid recovery efforts by states?
To help address these and related questions, the Alliance for Health Reform and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation sponsored a November 9 briefing. Panelists were: Lisa Alecxih, long-term care policy expert and vice president of the Lewin Group; Bonnie Burns, training and policy specialist at California Health Advocates (the California SHIP program); Mark R. Meiners, director of the Center for Health Policy Research and Ethics at George Mason University, and an expert on the Partnership program; and David Colby, vice president of research and evaluation at Robert Wood Johnson. Ed Howard, executive vice president of the Alliance, moderated the discussion.
Full Transcript (Adobe Acrobat PDF)