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This lesson will explore the following topics:

As a life care planner, you will need to conduct cost research to complete a life care plan. This lesson will explain techniques on how to acquire the base cost of recommendations as well as describe the role of the economist in calculating the total cost of the recommendations.

  • Know how to appropriately conduct an area cost analysis for a Life Care Plan
  • Understand how geographic location can effect area cost analyses
  • Learn where to locate cost of supplies and equipment for inclusion in the life care plan
  • Identify the areas of concern for an economist when analyzing the life care plan

Learning Activities

1. Read “Researching Costs” (Please see attached file: Reading Materials on Costing).

2. Read Chapter 32: “Life Care Planning Resources” in Life Care Planning and Case Management Handbook (3rd edition) or Chapter 30: “Life Care Planning Resources” in Life Care Planning and Case Management Handbook (4th edition)

In this chapter, Kitchen and Brown discuss numerous resources that can be employed by life care planners in their everyday practices. Guidelines for conducting area cost analyses are presented. The authors also discuss the importance of creating a database to allow you to store and retrieve cost data. As you begin to build your database, appreciate that sources change frequently: companies will go out of business; technology will become outdated; websites become unavailable; and regulations will change. Approach resources with some degree of caution, and try to update your life care plan within a reasonable time period if necessary. While some of the resources listed in this book may already be outdated, the methodology behind creating a database to keep track of resources is sound.

3. Read Chapter 11: “The Role of the Economist in Life Care Planning” in the Life Care Planning and Case Management Handbook (3rd edition).

This chapter discusses areas of concern that an economist may have when being asked to compute present and future values and care costs of the life care plan. Five areas of concern are delineated in this chapter: cost categories; items that should and should not be included; timing of the items; the use of actual or annual averages; and the emphasis placed on trivial items. The chapter sets forth recommendations on how the life care plan should be presented for an economist’s viewpoint.

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