$100,000 a year for a nursing home room? Report says long-term care costs surge

AP Health Writer

Long-term care costs are surging and the most expensive option — a private nursing home room — may soon top $100,000 per year.

According to a new survey by Genworth Financial out Tuesday, rising labor expenses and sicker patients helped push the median cost of care up an average of 4.5 percent this year. That's the second-highest increase since Genworth began its survey in 2004.

The cost of home health aide services climbed the most, rising 6 percent to $21.50 an hour. Private nursing home care now costs more than $97,000.

Joe Caldwell of the National Council on Aging says people don't plan for these expenses or understand them until they face them.

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