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TIAA MOVES TO REDUCE COST, INCREASE PROTECTION, OF ITS LONG-TERM CARE COVERAGE

 NEW YORK, April 12 /PRNewswire/ -- Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association (TIAA), one of the nation's largest life insurance companies, announces the addition of several enhancements to its long- term care insurance policy -- Teachers LongTerm Care. These features have the effect of reducing the policy's cost through dividends, increasing its benefits, and making it available to more people. Teachers LongTerm Care, introduced in 1991, is offered nationally to individuals throughout the non-profit education and research communities, either directly, or through employer-sponsored plans.
 Dividends to be Credited: TIAA announced the availability of dividends beginning after the third year of an individual's Teachers LongTerm Care policy. Dividends, while not guaranteed, will be automatically applied to premium payments to reduce the cost of the policy. Consistent with its non-profit status and charter purpose, TIAA has a history of returning to its policyholders premium amounts in excess of what is needed to pay claims, cover expenses and otherwise operate the company in a financially sound manner.
 Inflation Protection: A second new feature enables Teachers LongTerm Care policyholders to increase their daily and lifetime coverage amounts to offset the effects of inflation, while lowering initial premium costs. This is done through Teachers LongTerm Care's new Periodic Inflation Option. This allows policyholders to purchase additional amounts of coverage each year, consistent with increases in the Consumer Price Index, providing this option is exercised at least once every three years over the life of the policy. Previously, the only inflation protection available with Teachers LongTerm Care was one which automatically increased each year, and required substantially higher initial premiums that remained level throughout the life of the policy.
 Alternate Care Coverage: A third enhancement will enable TIAA, where appropriate, to approve benefits in special situations beyond those specifically enumerated in a standard Teaches LongTerm Care policy. For instance, in certain instances it may be appropriate to pay for construction of a ramp for wheelchair access.
 Availability Expanded: Teachers LongTerm Care is available to employees, active or retired, their spouses, parents and parents-in-law. As a fourth new feature, the policy's previous minimum enrollment age of 40 has been reduced to 18, enabling educational and research employees in the early stages of their careers, as well as other eligible family members, to purchase long-term care insurance protection at extremely affordable premium rates.
 "These enhancements to Teachers LongTerm Care, as well as its overall design, are largely the result of input that TIAA received directly from plan administrators and employees," said Bruce Boyd, TIAA vice president. "The result is a policy that provides even more comprehensive and flexible coverage, supported by an excellent program to offer assistance in identifying appropriate care.
 "TIAA is an organization which has successfully served the insurance needs of the education and research communities for 75 years. During this time, TIAA has established a comprehensive service program which makes it uniquely qualified to provide the necessary education and communications support to effectively integrate long-term care planning into one's overall plans for financial security.
 "The fact that TIAA is one of only three U.S. life insurance companies, out of over 2,000, to have the highest ratings from the four leading independent rating agencies for life insurance companies provides further assurance to administrators and employees regarding the financial strength and security of TIAA."
 Other key features of Teachers LongTerm Care insurance include: coverage of all levels of care, from custodial to skilled; respite care, which pays a benefit for formal care giving, enabling the family care giver some time off; an integrated lifetime benefit maximum, which gives insured persons latitude in deciding how to apply their benefits between home care and nursing home care; a one-time benefit waiting period; and no exclusion for pre-existing conditions once an individual is insured. And, since a Teachers LongTerm Care policy is individually owned, people may maintain their coverage as long as premiums are paid, whether or not they continue to work for a TIAA-eligible institution.
 Teachers LongTerm Care's four new enhancements and other plan options are not available in all states. Currently, the policy is available in 45 states, as well as Washington, D.C. and other U.S. jurisdictions. Regulatory approval for the policy and plan options are pending in other states.
 TIAA and its companion organization, College Retirement Equities Fund (CREF), constitute the world's largest pension fund, with over $115 billion in assets under management; TIAA represents about $62 billion. TIAA-CREF serves approximately 1.6 million policyholders at some 5,000 colleges and universities, independent schools, and related non-profit educational and research institutions. In addition to Teachers LongTerm Care, TIAA also offers individual life, group life, and group disability insurance to this same market, as well as individual life insurance to the K-12 education sector.
 -0- 4/12/93
 /CONTACT: Tom Pinto, public information officer of TIAA-CREF, 212-916-5986/


CO: TIAA-CREF ST: New York IN: FIN SU:

KD-TS -- NY015 -- 4665 04/12/93 09:49 EDT
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Date:Apr 12, 1993
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