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Press Release

Long-Term Care Topic Of Public Hearings
Tuesday, September 20, 2005
Contact:   Beth Scott
               850/ 413-2515
Tallahassee – The Florida Office of Insurance Regulation has scheduled a hearing and panel discussion in Tampa to solicit input from consumers, industry representatives and state officials as part of a comprehensive analysis of the Long-Term Care Insurance (LTCI) market.
The hearing is Monday, Oct. 10, from 10 a.m - 3 p.m. at the Marriott Tampa Westshore, 1001 N. Westshore Blvd., rescheduled from an August date that was postponed due to Hurricane Katrina.
A report highlighting the need for protection against skyrocketing Long-Term Care costs is divided into two phases. The first phase was a review of the overall Long-Term Care market and developing national issues with a particular focus on issues specific to Florida.  The results of the first phase, which are provided in a summary report show an ever-increasing need for protection against high costs but also shows consumers are not turning to LTCI for protection.
"Private Long-Term Care insurance is an important tool that has not lived up to its potential," Florida Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty said. "We need to look at the problems and work to make private insurance an important part of Long-Term Care in Florida."
Nationally there have been significant problems with the private LTCI market including skyrocketing rate increases, contract ambiguity and availability. Coupled with these problems is concern about Medicare/Medicaid having the financial strength to continue as a backstop for seniors.