LTC Bullet:  Interview with Prudential's Malcolm Cheung

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


LTC Comment:  Marilee Driscoll interviews Malcolm Cheung of Prudential after the ***news.***

*** Today's LTC Bullet is sponsored by The National LTC Network, proud supporters of the 3IN4 NEED MORE awareness campaign.  Read more about how you and your organization can support LTCI sales and referrals by using the 3in4 Need More campaign at  The National LTC Network is an alliance of leading distributors of long term care insurance.  Network member firms place more than $50 million/year in LTCI premium.  Contact a member firm to attend their Producer's Conference Oct. 2-4 in Dallas, where you'll learn how to sell over the internet and much more.***

*** FEARLESS CAREGIVER CONFERENCE in Minneapolis, May 19.  Steve Moses will speak.  Check out the flyer here and register here. Fearless Caregiver Conferences provide "answers and support for family caregivers."  Read Editor-in-Chief Gary Barg's extraordinary interviews with celebrity caregivers here.  Subscribe to Caregiver magazine here. ***

*** MOSES ON THE FUTURE OF LTC FINANCING.  Lincoln Financial Group sponsored a webcast on April 19 in which a panel of experts urged consumers to understand LTC funding options well before need.  Listen to the program including Steve's five-minute presentation here. ***

*** LTC INSURANCE BUYER STUDY, 2011 LTC SOURCEBOOK.  "Individuals who purchased long-term care insurance protection in 2010 continued to favor limited duration policies according to research by the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance, the national trade organization.  According to data gathered on 153,000 new policies, over half (57.1%) of purchasers selected policies with a Benefit Period of 4-years or less. . . .  The complete findings will be published in the Association's 2011 Long-Term Care Insurance Sourcebook. ***



LTC Comment:  Most Americans do not worry or plan about long-term care until it's too late to insure against the risk.  But some do act early and responsibly.  Who are they and why are they different?  That's what a recent study published by The Prudential Insurance Company of America revealed.  The answer became the basis for the "3in4 Need More" awareness campaign's message.  Today's LTC Bullet features an interview with Prudential's Malcolm Cheung by author/consultant Marilee Driscoll about the study's findings.


"Interview with Prudential's Malcolm Cheung"
Marilee Driscoll

Author's note:

In late March, I read Prudential's newly-released study Long-Term Care Insurance: A Piece of the Retirement & Estate Planning Puzzle.  The study analyzed poll results of 983 Americans.   In my opinion, this is a watershed study.  It puts figures to the feelings that many of us have shared anecdotally for years.  The implications for those looking to encourage Americans to do long term care planning and to purchase long term care insurance are great.  Whether you are a large organization or an individual producer, you should read this report. 

So, when I was offered the chance to interview Malcolm Cheung (Pru's vice president of Long-Term Care Product and Risk) about the report, I jumped at the chance.  The interview took place April 20, 2011.

Marilee:  What was Pru's primary motivation in underwriting this report?

Malcolm:  So many in our industry have struggled with how to get greater penetration in both the individual and group markets.  We did this study to gain a better understanding and to do some consumer research about how people feel about long term care and LTCI, what's keeping them from buying, and how they feel after they buy it.  Our goal was to help the industry in its efforts to encourage planning for potential LTC costs.

Marilee:  What was the finding that most surprised or interested you?

Malcolm:  I was most interested in the finding that adults who knew someone who needed LTC services are much more concerned about personally needing LTC than those who have not (78% vs. 58%).  Here's why I think this is important: as the baby boomers age, many have or will have experience with the LTC needs of parents.  I'm going through this in my own family now.  Those experiences, more than anything else, will move people.  As their awareness rises, as they personally experience the financial and emotional burden of providing this care, the value of LTCI will become more apparent.

[Author note:  the report says those who knew someone who needed LTC are almost twice as likely to have purchased LTCI - 21% vs. 11%; page 5 of report]

There was another finding I also found significant.  77% of those surveyed agreed with the statement "I should know more about LTC insurance than I currently do."  They recognize the knowledge gap exists. 

Marilee:  When considering the report, what are the implications for the LTCI agent?

Malcolm:  For the producer, the primary point I would highlight is that there is a knowledge gap.  Instead of selling product, producers should help prospects identify and understand the risk.  What are your chances, what does it cost, what are the ways to fund these costs?  I think educating is smart, since prospects know they have a knowledge gap, and they want to take care of the problem.

Marilee:  Is Pru planning any other LTCI research for publication, whether related or not to this report?

Malcolm:  Our next Cost of Care Survey will be coming out the Summer of 2012.

Marilee Driscoll has 20+ years of experience in the LTCi business as consultant to national distributors, founder of the Driscoll Drip LTCI referral marketing program, professional speaker, and licensed agent.  She writes Agent Sales Journal's monthly "12 Questions for One Successful LTCi Agent" column, is author of "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Long Term Care Planning," and is a weekly syndicated columnist for Gatehouse Media.  Reach her at, tele. 508-830-9975.