Medicaid and Long-Term Care

Medicaid safety net stretched to pay for seniors’ long-term care, By Anna Gorman, August 3, 2016, National Public Radio: “Donna Nickerson spent her last working years as the activity and social services director at a Turlock, Calif., nursing home. But when she developed Alzheimer’s disease and needed that kind of care herself, she and her husband couldn’t afford it: A bed at a nearby home cost several thousand dollars a month. ‘I’m not a wealthy man,’ said Nickerson’s husband Mel, a retired California State University-Stanislaus professor. ‘There’s no way I could pay for that.’  About half of all people turning 65 today will need daily help as they age, either at home or in nursing homes. Such long-term care will cost an average of $91,100 for men and double that for women, because they live longer…”

Medicaid and Long-Term Care

Pitfalls seen in a turn to privately run long-term care, By Nina Bernstein, March 6, 2014, New York Times: “Even as public attention is focused on the Affordable Care Act, another health care overhaul is underway in many states: an ambitious effort to restrain the ballooning Medicaid cost of long-term care as people live longer and survive more disabling conditions. At least 26 states, including California, Florida, Illinois and New York, are rolling out mandatory programs that put billions of public dollars into privately managed long-term care plans, in hopes of keeping people in their homes longer, and expanding alternatives to nursing homes…”

Medicaid and Long-Term Care

With Medicaid, long-term care of elderly looms as a rising cost, By Nina Bernstein, September 6, 2012, New York Times: “Medicaid has long conjured up images of inner-city clinics jammed with poor families. Its far less-visible role is as the only safety net for millions of middle-class people whose needs for long-term care, at home or in a nursing home, outlast their resources. With baby boomers and their parents living longer than ever, few families can count on their own money to go the distance. So while Medicare has drawn more attention in the election campaign, seniors and their families may have even more at stake in the future of Medicaid changes – those proposed, and others already under way. Though former President Bill Clinton overstated in his convention speech on Wednesday how much Medicaid spends on the elderly in nursing homes – they account for well under a third, not nearly two-thirds, of spending – Medicaid spends more than five times as much on each senior in long-term care as it does on each poor child, and even more per person on the disabled in long-term care…”