RADNOR, Pa., Dec. 6, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- A panel of long-term care experts participating in a Lincoln Financial Group-sponsored webcast, encouraged Americans to be more proactive in their long-term care efforts and to partner with knowledgeable financial professionals to ensure customized programs that can help protect assets and prepare for retirement issues. The webcast titled, "Steps to Building Greater Financial Certainty," was hosted by Lincoln Financial Distributors, the wholesale distribution subsidiary of Lincoln Financial Group (NYSE: LNC). (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20050830/LFLOGO ) The panel of industry professionals included Steve Schoonveld, head of Linked Benefit Products for Lincoln Financial Group; Melissa Spickler, senior vice president, wealth management advisor of Merrill Lynch; and, Dr. Stephen Holland, chief medical officer of Univita Health. Moderating the webcast was Andrew Bucklee, head of MoneyGuard Solutions Distribution for Lincoln Financial Distributors. "As the population ages, the prevalence of chronic disease, disability and dependence will increase," said Dr. Holland. "Approximately 70 percent of those over 65 will require some type of long-term care support during their lifetime, which can range from assistance with bathing and dressing to supervision for a cognitive impairment to medication management. These services can be provided formally by paid caregivers or informally by friends and family, and in a facility or at home." "Without proper planning, family members, especially caregivers, are left with few options for managing long-term care expenses," Bucklee said. "As the needs of each individual are unique, it is critical each works with the right financial professional to customize an effective plan." "Many Baby Boomers in the absence of a plan, will turn to their children to help provide care," said Schoonveld. "When that time comes, those family caregivers often put their careers and retirement plans on hold while also facing the prospect of paying for all or some of their parents' long-term care. This is in addition to financially supporting their own children."