Cost of CareTrends & Insights

We started tracking the cost of care 17 years ago and have been trusted source since.

Since 2004, families across America have counted on us to help them understand the cost of care. Our research in 435 cities and towns across all 50 states has not only helped individuals plan for their own care but helped policymakers with forecasting and legislative reform. Over the years, we’ve tracked various trends that have come and gone but one thing hasn’t changed: long term care costs for nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and in-home care are higher than most people have planned for and only continue to rise.

Cost of Care Trends (2004 – 2020)

From 2004 to 2020, the cost for facility and in-home care services has risen on average from 1.88% – 3.80% per year. That’s an increase of $797 annually for home care and up to $2,542 annually for a private room in a nursing home. At this rate, some care costs are outpacing the U.S. inflation rate of 1.8%.**

*Represents average cost through 2008, switched to median in 2009. Genworth Cost of Care Survey 2004-2020, Conducted by CareScout®
** United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statisticsopens in new window, Accessed 11/08/20.

Why Cost of Care is Increasing

Since we started tracking the cost of care in 2004, long term care services have been on the rise. This year, the impacts of COVID-19 shook the industry as many care providers adopted new measures to keep their patients healthy and safe. To address the needs of an already rapidly aging population during an unprecedented health crisis, home care and facilities saw a significant increase compared to last year’s numbers.

As part of our commitment to understand why costs are rising, this year we conducted a follow-up study to understand how COVID-19 is impacting the cost of care. Our research suggests that the following factors are contributing to rate increases:

  • Labor Shortages
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) costs
  • Regulatory changes (including updated CDC guidelines)
  • Employee recruitment and retention challenges
  • Wage pressures
  • Supply and demand