14 Apr Bruce Willis’s Aphasia Diagnose and the Importance of Long-Term Care Insurance
Bruce Willis has been acting for decades. He became a household name by starring in massive hits like The Sixth Sense (1999) and Die Hard (1988). Willis has been incredibly prolific in his career, and even at the age of 67 he was still starring in action movies released this year.
It’s tragic that his family recently announced that Bruce Willis has been diagnosed with Aphasia and will be stepping down from acting. His wife and five children are probably still trying to process what this will mean for their family.
Aphasia is not a common disorder, and not well known by the general public. Getting this diagnosis was probably a large shock to Bruce and his family.
What is Aphasia?
With Bruce Willis’s announcement many people have been wondering what Aphasia is. Aphasia is a language disorder that impairs your ability to communicate. It’s a result of damage to the part of the brain that handles language.
Typically, this damage is caused by a stroke. In America around 25% of the population can expect to have a stroke at some point in their lives. Even though a significant percentage of the population will have a stroke, most won’t result in Aphasia. Currently 180,000 Americans acquire Aphasia every year, which is about 1 in 19 of all strokes result in Aphasia.
Aphasia has no formal cure, but there are treatment plans. Speech therapy and adjustments in communication styles are the main forms of treatment. Family and friends are strongly encouraged to learn how to communicate in simpler ways to help bridge the language gap.
How Does This Apply to You?
What Bruce Willis and his family are going through is upsetting but not uncommon. Long Term Care Insurance is a way to protect your family from the financial burden a diagnosis like Aphasia can cause.
Long-term care is when an individual can’t take care of themselves like they used to and need more medical assistance. Normally this involves not being able to perform 2 of the 6 “activities of daily life”. Another thing that causes the need for long-term care is a cognitive disability like Alzheimer’s disease or Aphasia. By having an insurance plan in place, you won’t have to pay out of pocket for long-term care.
Most people assume that Medicare covers long term care costs, but it doesn’t. Most Americans also underestimate the cost of long-term care which can deplete a family’s savings quickly. With no government help (besides Medicaid which is reserved for the lowest income families) and the ever-increasing medical expense of long-term care, most individuals will be responsible for more medical bills than they have saved for.
The harsh reality is that most Americans will need long term care and most families are not financially prepared for it.
Who Needs Long-Term Care Insurance?
For the Willis family they won’t have to worry about the financial burden, just the emotional one. They can easily pay out of pocket for the care that Bruce will need.
But for most families a diagnosis like this would be very costly and put pressure on the family financially. That means a family might have to decide where to pull money out of to cover the costs of medication and care. Even though the family is already dealing with the heartbreak of watching a family member losing their ability to communicate as they used to.
With disorders like this, where the person who needs care might not be able to communicate or make decisions, it’s vital that individuals have plans and insurance in place so that their families don’t have to make medical and financial decisions for them.
It’s difficult to imagine needing long-term care. But as Bruce Willis’s situation shows us, an unexpected illness can happen at any time to you or a loved one. Disorders that make it difficult to work or even communicate with your family can affect anyone. By planning ahead, you can make sure you get the care that you need, and that your family won’t be financially burdened when they are in a vulnerable state.
It’s smart to explore your options for long-term care insurance while you are healthy, because once you need it you will not be able to get it. There are many plans available from many different insurance companies. From traditional plans that only cover long-term care to hybrid plans that also include life insurance.
You know what is best for you and your family and it’s worth looking at all the options, instead of waiting until it’s too late.