The costs for long-term care spiked again, especially for home health aides – but home-based care is still vastly less expensive than nursing home care, according to the "Genworth 2017 Cost of Care Survey," based on data collected from more than 15,000 completed surveys by long-term care providers nationwide.

The annual median cost of long-term care services increased an average of 4.5 percent from 2016 to 2017, the second-highest year-over-year increase for nursing homes and home care since the study began in 2004 and nearly three times the 1.7 percent U.S. rate of inflation, according to the survey, conducted by Carescout on behalf of Genworth Financial Inc.

The rate of increase is highest for home health aides: home health aide services, up 6.17 percent to $21.50/hour; homemaker services, up 4.75 percent to $21/hour; and adult day health care services, up 2.94 percent to $70/day.

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Katie Kuehner-Hebert

Katie Kuehner-Hebert is a freelance writer based in Running Springs, Calif. She has more than three decades of journalism experience, with particular expertise in employee benefits and other human resource topics.