May 13, 2019

The coming long-term care cost crisis

Photo: RJ Sangosti/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Long-term care is already prohibitively expensive for many seniors, and the problem is expected to explode in scope in the next couple of decades, the New York Times reports.

The big picture: The problem is especially acute for the group of seniors that have incomes too high to quality for Medicaid or subsidized housing, but too low to afford pricey long-term care.

  • In a decade, 80% of seniors that fall into the middle-income category will have less than $60,000 a year in income and assets, according to a recent study. But assisted living plus out-of-pocket medical expenses is projected to cost $62,000.
  • Depending on how long-term care is defined, between half and two-thirds of older Americans are expected to need it.

The bottom line: Medicare and Social Security funding is already in trouble, making it hard to imagine where the money for any additional long-term care benefits would come from. Smaller solutions are easier to picture.

  • Regardless of whether the U.S. budget has room for it or not, the problem of how to pay for seniors' care is barreling towards us, and it's only going to get worse.

Go deeper: Seniors are the health care industry's gold rush

Go deeper

America's dwindling executions

The Trump administration wants to reboot federal executions, pointing to a 16-year lapse, but Pew Research reports the government has only executed three people since 1963.

The big picture: Nearly all executions in the U.S. are done by states. Even those have been steadily dropping for two decades, per the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) — marking a downward trend for all executions in the country.

Top NSC official may be moved after "Anonymous" rumor fallout

President Trump at the Daytona 500. (Photo: Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

Top Trump administration officials are in discussions to reassign deputy national security adviser Victoria Coates to the Department of Energy from the National Security Council, per two sources familiar with the planning.

Why it matters: Coates' working relationship with National Security Adviser Robert O'Brien, who elevated her to the deputy role only months ago, has strained amid an effort by some people inside the administration to tag her as "Anonymous" — a charge she has vehemently denied to colleagues.

Jeff Bezos commits $10 billion for climate change research

Bezos at Amazon Smbhav in New Delhi on Jan. 15. Photo: Sajjad Hussain/AFP via Getty Images

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos announced the launch of his "Earth Fund" on Monday via Instagram to fund climate change research and awareness.

What he's saying: Bezos says he's initially committing $10 billion to fund "scientists, activists, and NGOS" that are working on environmental preservation and protection efforts.