Long-term care involves a variety of services designed to meet a person’s health or personal care needs during a short or long period of time. These services help people live as independently and safely as possible when they can no longer perform everyday activities on their own.

Most Care Provided at Home

Long-term care is provided in different places by different caregivers, depending on a person’s needs. Most long-term care is provided at home by unpaid family members and friends. It can also be given in a facility such as a nursing home or in the community, for example, in an adult day care center.

The most common type of long-term care is personal care — help with everyday activities, also called “activities of daily living.” These activities include bathing, dressing, grooming, using the toilet, eating, and moving around — for example, getting out of bed and into a chair.

Long-term care also includes community services such as meals, adult day care, and transportation services. These services may be provided free or for a fee.

Long-term care insurance is a type of policy which is designed to provide for the financial welfare of an individual beyond a certain period. An example of this can be seen when a common disability package is replaced with its long-term counterpart. Such a plan is commonly seen with individuals who may have chronic illnesses (such as COPD or emphysema) and those who have become physically handicapped. This insurance policy exists in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom. It can be known by its acronym LTCI or simply as LTI (Long-Term Insurance).