Chuck Groot Financial Consulting

Heath Care and Growing Older

One of the unfortunate things about growing older is that health care cost rise exponentially. Thankfully in Canada we have an excellent health care system and in the US, once you reach 65 you are eligible for Medicare. Although both a good programs they do not cover everything. This coupled with the fact that people are living longer and the healthcare systems were developed many years ago, health care is an area that really needs to be looked at and well planned for.

In general there is:

Often a long wait for Hip replacement and Cataract surgery.

Alzheimer’s and Dementia is on the increase and these patients are taking up 33% of all hospital beds.

Home care services are available in every province but wait time s are long and the service is inconsistent, there just are enough people to do the work.

Long-term and Palliative Care facilities are at maximum capacity, cost are skyrocketing, workers are at an all-time shortage.

There is access to drug coverage but additional charges are high and you can expect to pay $3000 or more a year for out of pocket costs. In Canada, 62% of seniors take five or more drugs classes and those over 85 usually are taking 10 or more prescription drugs.

Family Care-givers provide at least 10 hours a week of care. There is very little aid for these care givers with the exception of Caregiver and Family Caregiver Tax Credits.

Higher health challenges due to less physical activity, more injuries – particularly falls, and poor nutrition.

The Global News did a Canadian survey in 2014 and found that the average retiree paid $ 5, 391 in out-of-pocket medical expenses. We have most of our 37.5 million people insured but 25% opt for additional coverage. While in the U.S. we found that 25% or 1 out of every 4 U.S. families are having a problem paying medical bills and that only increased with the population over 65. 31 million American citizens are uninsured.  

One of the best things is to research and find a good health and dental insurance coverage. It may seem expensive but in the long run it can be well worth it. You could look to your former professional body,  alumni association, union, or other group you belong to see if they have coverage.

The best way to figure out if you need insurance is to look at a years’ worth of numbers.

Service or item

What do you pay now

What will future cost be

What is covered

Dental visits and fees




Drug costs




Hospital rooms




Vision care




Paramedical expenses*




Nursing care




Medical equipment




Travel insurance





  • Paramedical services are services like, massage therapy, physiotherapy, chiropractic, cranial sacral therapy, acupuncture, podiatrist, osteopath, psychologist, naturopath, dietician, ambulance, in-home nursing, and hearing aids.

Another big expense comes when you or your partner gets beyond the point that one can take care of the other. At this point extended care will be needed. Needless to say, both of you won’t want to live (or can’t) live in extended care. It is a good idea to research the cost of various care facilities and find out how much it will be to have you in separate homes.


Monthly cost

 Yearly cost

















Finally it is usually a good idea to research companies that provide in home care and companionship. A very personalized care program can be created but  the costs vary greatly.



Cost per hour

















A little time invested doing some planning and your life will be so much easier when it comes crunch time.

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