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A woman in a wheelchair for her long term disability is working at a desk.

Disability Insurance Awareness Month

Disability by the Numbers

Long term disabilities impact more people than you might think.

It’s easy to think of long term disability insurance as extra coverage that’s nice to have “just in case.” In reality, disabilities are much more common than you may think – 26% of people in the U.S. have some type of disability.

Living with Disabilities

  • More than 38 million people (12.6%) have a severe disability
  • More than 12 million people over age six (4.4%) need assistance with one or more activities of daily living.
  • 61 million adults in the U.S. live with a disability.
  • The percentage of people living with disabilities is highest in the South.
  • 2 in 5 adults age 65 and older have a disability
  • 1 in 4 women have a disability

Functional Disabilities

Functional disabilities are disabilities that include the complete or partial loss of function of a body part. Of people who have functional disabilities:

  • 13.7 percent have a mobility disability with serious difficulty walking or climbing stairs
  • 10.8 percent have a cognition disability with serious difficulty concentrating, remembering or making decisions
  • 6.8 percent have an independent living disability with difficulty doing errands alone
  • 5.9 percent are deaf or have serious difficulty hearing
  • 4.6 percent have a vision disability with blindness or serious difficulty seeing even when wearing glasses
  • 3.6 percent have a self-care disability with difficulty dressing or bathing

How LTD Coverage Helps

Even if you’re prepared, long-term disability issues that prevent you from working may last far longer than your emergency savings fund will hold out:

Many long-term-disability claims are for chronic problems such as cancer and musculoskeletal conditions. According to the Council for Disability Awareness, the average duration of a claim in these categories is nearly three years — 34.6 months.

  • The average duration of long-term disability is 31.2 months
  • Disability costs are expected to increase in the United states by 37% over the next 10 yrs1
  • Workers over 40 are out of work on average 8-18 days longer than the younger worker1
  • Median age for workers in 2020 was 42.5

Long term disability insurance can help bridge your income gap if you find yourself unable to work for a long period of time. Get more information on our DC Long Term Disability Plan, issued by the Prudential Insurance Company of America.

Additional References

1. Hawley, C. E., Diaz, S., & Reid, C. (2009). Healthcare employees’ progression through disability benefits. Work, 34, 53-66

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