Everything I've read suggests that between 60-62 is the sweet spot.
<p>I've always heard 50-55. The problem with waiting too long is if you develop any sort of major health problem, you can become uninsurable - forever. That includes cancer, heart disease, neurological diseases, diabetes, etc. My husband was diagnosed with MS when he was 40 and he can't get LT health care insurance nor additional life insurance.</p>
<p>Look for a policy that not only covers nursing home care but also home health. Even if you don't need a nursing home, chances are if you live long enough you will need some sort of home health or hospice care.</p>
<p>I have a policy like Dadinator's. The important thing to remember is Medicare does not pay for a skilled nursing home and Medicaid generally only pays for it if you spend down most of your assets (including selling your home in some states). This can leave the other spouse with little to nothing to live on. The other thing is most decent nursing homes will only take a set number of Medicaid patients, so it is often difficult to get into a nice one unless you have the assets to pay $50,000 a year and up.</p>
<p>The hospital I work at has to place patients in nursing homes all the time (too frail to be sent home, etc) and many, many times the patient has to be sent out of state become all the nursing homes nearby have taken their allotment of Medicaid patients.</p>
<p>I guess because of my husband's inability to get insurance coupled with working at the hospital and with the nursing home the hospital owns, I'm a big proponent of getting long-term health care insurance. Have seen too many people either wiped out financially or are unable to get the necessary care for a parent because of a lack of insurance. It's easier and cheaper to get when you are younger. My insurance company (John Hancock) has not raised premiums in many years. I got my policy a few years ago through my employer with a guaranteed issue if you took it when you were first hired. If I were to try and get it now, most likely I would have to have a physical.</p>