Public Release:  AP-NORC releases new analysis on Californians' experiences with long-term care

NORC at the University of Chicago

Chicago, June 10, 2014--The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research has released an issue brief containing results of a survey on long-term care in California. With a particular focus on demographics, the issue brief provides new data on how Californians are, or are not, planning for long-term care and their views on the role of family. This information is vital as policymakers are currently grappling with how to plan for and finance high-quality long-term care in the United States.

"This issue brief takes a focused look at long-term care attitudes and experiences in this large and diverse state," said Trevor Tompson, director of the AP-NORC Center. "Among several growing minority groups including Hispanics and foreign-born Californians, the survey reveals greater levels of concern about many aspects of aging and lower levels of planning for long-term care relative to other Californians."

As part of a national survey, the AP-NORC Center conducted 485 interviews with a representative sample of California adults who are at least 40 years old. Funding for the survey was provided by The SCAN Foundation.

Key findings from the study include:

  • Nearly two-thirds of Californians age 40 or older say they will need long-term care someday, yet the majority have done little or no planning for their own long-term care needs.
  • Across demographic groups, a majority say they can rely on their family as they age, with differences based on age and household composition. Compared to the rest of the country, however, fewer Californians say they have discussed their long-term care planning needs with loved ones.
  • Similar to the rest of the country, Californians age 40 or older are more likely to have planned for their death than for long-term care--yet there are sharp differences across demographic groups in long-term care planning behaviors.
  • Hispanics and those born outside of the United States express greater concern than others about a number of aspects of aging.
  • Confidence in one's ability to pay for long-term care is lower among foreign-born Californians, those who are younger, and women.
  • Among California's caregivers, most acknowledge the stress of providing care to family or close friends, but overall they remain positive about the experience. Differences emerge based on a number of socioeconomic factors.
  • While 6 in 10 Californians age 40 or older expect a loved one to need care in the next five years, non-Hispanic whites, U.S.-born Californians, and those in higher-income households are much more likely than others to have planned for their loved one's care.
  • Polarization on some long-term care policies is greater among partisans in California than among partisans in the rest of the country, yet Democrats, Republicans, and independents agree on the extent to which individuals and families should be responsible for care costs relative to the government and insurers.

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About the Survey

The survey was conducted by the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. The survey was conducted from March 13 through April 23, 2014. It was funded by The SCAN Foundation. This random-digit-dial (RDD) survey of the 50 states and the District of Columbia was conducted via telephone with 1,745 adults age 40 and older. In households with more than one adult 40 or older, we used a process that randomly selected which eligible adult would be interviewed. The sample included 1,340 respondents on landlines and 405 respondents on cell phones. The sample also included oversamples of Californians and Hispanics 40 years and older. The sample includes 485 residents of California ages 40 and older and 458 Hispanics from the 50 states and the District of Columbia ages 40 and older. Interviews were conducted in both English and Spanish, depending on respondent preference. All interviews were completed by professional interviewers who were carefully trained on the specific survey for this study. The overall margin of error for the national sample is +/- 3.6 percentage points, including the design effect resulting from the complex sample design. The overall margin of error for the California sample is +/-5.3 percentage points, and the overall margin of error for the Hispanic sample is +/-6.8 percentage points.

NORC at the University of Chicago

NORC at the University of Chicago is an independent research organization headquartered in downtown Chicago with additional offices in the University of Chicago campus, the D.C. Metro area, Atlanta, Boston, and San Francisco. NORC also supports a nationwide field staff as well as international research operations. With clients throughout the world, NORC collaborates with government agencies, foundations, education institutions, nonprofit organizations, and businesses to provide data and analysis that support informed decision making in key areas including health, education, crime, justice, and energy. NORC's more than 70 years of leadership and experience in data collection, analysis, and dissemination--coupled with deep subject matter expertise--provides the foundation for effective solutions to issues confronting society. http://www.norc.org

About AP

The Associated Press is the essential global news network, delivering fast, unbiased news from every corner of the world to all media platforms and formats. Founded in 1846, AP today is the most trusted source of independent news and information. On any given day, more than half the world's population sees news from AP. On the Web: http://www.ap.org.

The SCAN Foundation is dedicated to advancing a coordinated and easily navigated system of high-quality services for older adults that preserve dignity and independence. http://www.thescanfoundation.org/

Contact: For more information please contact: Eric Young for NORC at the University of Chicago at young-eric@norc.org or 703-217-6814, or Paul Colford for The Associated Press at pcolford@ap.org.

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