An Alzheimer's Story
- November 15, 2022
Finding Support for Those We Love
Gina, age 56, and her husband Frank are happily married. Their son, Sam, 30, lives abroad and they are happy that he is doing well and has settled into the lifestyle he had dreamed of. Although Sam is on his own and doesn’t need financial support from his parents, Gina and Frank are both career driven, continuing to work with no plans to retire in the near future. Their favorite time of the day is when they sit down for dinner and discuss what is going on in their work life and their extended families.
Frank has a great relationship with his financial professional, and during one of their meetings, he expressed that Gina has a history of dementia in her family. His financial professional listened to and understood his concerns, and brought up the thought of Long-Term Care Insurance. He explained to Frank all of the ways this type of coverage would provide great protection if an untimely event or illness like dementia were to arise. Frank decided to proceed with purchasing Long-Term Care Insurance, as it gave him the re-assurance that no matter what lay ahead, he and Gina would be able to receive proper care if needed.
Over the course of the next year, Frank started to realize that Gina’s description of her days while they were at the dinner table started to become less detailed, as if she could not remember exactly what she did. He didn’t think too much of it until one day, he received a call from one of her clients saying that this is the second time Gina has not shown up for an appointment. When Frank brought this to Gina’s attention, it was as if she had no idea she even made these appointments. Frank decided to sit down with Gina and tell her his concerns. She admitted that she had felt forgetful and unorganized recently, but said it could just be because she has been very busy and stressed out. Frank had a strange feeling that something else was wrong.
As time went on, Gina’s memory and organization skills continued to decline and she decided to go to the doctor. Initially, they said it might be depression, or stress, but Frank was not convinced that was the issue. He knew his wife and her personality so well, and was realizing major differences that were startling and upsetting to him. Frank expressed his concerns and Gina’s family history to the doctors. After several extensive tests, Gina was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s at the age of 59.
Many aspects of their lives began to change over time. Frank had to stop working to take care of Gina, as she was unable to perform many of her daily living activities. It was during a call one evening with his financial professional that Frank was reminded of the Long-Term Care policy he had purchased. With all that was going on, he had completely forgotten about the benefits and coverage that would be available to Gina through this insurance. Frank then contacted the insurance company and with help from their care coordinator, Gina was able to move into a memory loss facility once the illness made it too difficult for her to live at home. This new home was a comfortable place for Gina and provided Frank and Sam with confidence that Gina had the best care around her. The Long-Term Care policy prevented what could have been a much different scenario of Gina’s care. When Gina had stopped working, depleting their retirement savings was a constant concern of Frank’s, and not knowing how long he could afford care for Gina kept him up at night. Today, Frank can’t stop sharing with family and friends the importance of owning a Long-Term Care policy, since a health event can occur any time and it’s so important to be prepared.
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