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A viable option for a lot of families is to consider short term care insurance. Premiums are much lower and the underwriting process is much easier. Many application are approved in under a week. Short Term Care plans can pay for nursing home facility, assisted living facility, home health care, adult day care and hospice care.
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Factors such as the person's age, health, only applying as an individual, applying as a married couple, daily benefit levels, benefit periods, compound inflation options, elimination/waiting periods, and other items will really impact what the cost for a plan will be.
In today's world, there's a very good chance you will need long-term care at some point in your life. If you were paying for long-term care out of pocket, you can expect to be writing a check for at least $40,000 per year - something more specialized like a nursing home, then possibly well over $100,000 per year. Unfortunately, not too many people can write that check. While writing a check for several thousand dollars a year in premiums for long-term care coverage can have a bit of sticker shock, it can potentially save you 10's of thousands of dollars in the future if it happens to you. So the idea of the coverage is to transfer the risk to the insurance company in exchange for a small premium and use their money rather than your own to pay for the expenses if that care is ever needed.
The long and short being that the "average cost" is an irrelevant figure. It only gives you an idea. The actual cost you can expect to pay depends on your needs and what you want to accomplish with the coverage. From there you can start to compare numbers.
I would suggest speaking with an independent insurance agent who works with long-term care insurance products and can compare multiple companies for you. An agent can help you sort through all the zigs and zags of long-term care insurance and help determine what coverage will best serve your needs. If you need help with your coverage, please feel free to call or e-mail me via the contact me button - I have an agent in my group with a strong background in long-term care insurance.
I hope the information is helpful - please let me know if you have any other questions. Thanks very much.