Washington Update

• Congress is talking about creating a federal family long term care insurance plan that would cover about 12 million people, including civilian employees, spouses, parents, and parents-in-law. The Clinton administration estimates that 300,000 people would sign up initially, and the government could negotiate premiums that would be 15% to 20% lower than most people would pay, from between a few hundred to a few thousand dollars a year. "It would mean relatively low cost protection that many will need eventually," reported The Washington Post. It would shift the cost of home healthcare to individuals and insurance companies, rather than government assistance programs such as Medicaid.