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IFA in plea for common ADLs

The long-term care industry needs to agree on common terms and conditions to prevent consumers from being confused by the thresholds for a successful claim, says a leading LTC IFA.

Definitions of the activities of daily living vary from provider to provider, making it difficult for eld-erly consumers to understand what they mean and for IFAs to recommend a product, says Nursing Home Fees Agency partner Philip Spiers.

ADLs are the determining factors for making a claim on a LTC policy. Failure on being able to achieve two or three of them can lead to a policyholder making a full or partial claim.

The six most common ADLs are washing, dressing, feeding, toileting, mobility and transferring such as moving between a wheelchair and bed.

But providers claim it would be difficult to set a standard because not everyone would agree. They also ask whether product providers would be allowed to go above the standard.

They suggest that the onset of full regulation for LTC in 2004 could lead to a common standard for the industry in any case.

Spiers says: “I think the consumer interpretation of what is a failure of daily living may be vastly different from what the insurer thinks. LTC is a policy of last resort for most people so when they make a claim they generally need it and don&#39t need to be turned down because of a misinterpretation of terms.”

Norwich Union long-term care strategy manager Sandy Johnstone says: “This has been discussed at an industry level in the past. I think it is a good idea but you can never get everyone to agree that it is a good idea.”

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