Study: Long-term care in N.H. higher than national average

A new study by Genworth Financial says the cost of long-term care is considerably higher in New Hampshire than it is in the rest of the country.According to Genworth’s 2011 Cost of Care Survey, the median annual cost for care at an assisted living facility in New Hampshire is $46,870, compared to the national median of $39,135.It is slim comfort that assisted living costs in New Hampshire rose 4.5 percent per year over the past six years, while the nation’s costs rose 6 percent per year during the last six years.Home care, often touted as the best alternative for seniors, families and the government alike, is far more affordable, but still commands a hefty cost.Genworth found the median hourly rate for a New Hampshire-based home health aide was $24 per hour – or $54,912 per year for 44 hours of care per week, compared to the national average of $19 per hour, or $43,472.And the cost of home care has increased 1.5 percent each year over the past six years in New Hampshire, slightly more than the 1.4 percent nationally during this same period, according to Genworth.The study also found that the average yearly cost of a private nursing home room in the Granite State was $102,200 – some 31 percent higher than the national annual average of $77,745.The numbers are even higher in the combined region of Manchester and Nashua.The study found that a private one-bedroom residence at an assisted living facility in the Manchester-Nashua area cost an average of $64,596, and a nursing home private room was $112,055.Home care in the Manchester-Nashua area cost about $56,628, about 3 percent more than the state median cost.But assisted living costs in New Hampshire were less expensive when compared with other states in the region, except for Vermont, which had an average yearly cost of $43,200 for a private, one-bedroom.Assisted living residences in Massachusetts were the most expensive in the region, at $59,400, according to Genworth.The full report may be found at – CINDY KIBBE/NEW HAMPSHIRE BUSINESS REVIEW

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