Here at the Arbors, we often get calls from individuals who need help placing an elderly family member but do not have the financial resources for Memory Care or Assisted Living Communities. They need a facility that accepts Medicaid, but are finding that there are very few options in the state.
The Nevada Assisted Living Association is asking your help in passing two bills that will address these shortfalls in the Nevada Medicaid system. These shortfalls leave many Nevada seniors without the safety net for care that they need. We tend to put off thinking about the possible need for late-life care. The truth of the matter is that many services that were available through Medicaid 10 years ago are no longer covered. Due to scattered fixes over the years there are large discrepancies in reimbursement rates between similar providers. It has been 13 years since Medicaid providers have seen any type of increase in pay. The most prominent effect of low funding is the inability of providers to pay staff a fair rate or to hire enough staff to provide quality care. In the case of people with the complex behaviors that are a common result of Alzheimer’s, there is very little financial coverage outside of a skilled nursing setting.
There are two bills currently in the Nevada State Senate that may address these shortfalls; SB 95 and SB 96.
SB 95 – Requires an analysis of the adequacy of Medicaid reimbursement Rates for personal care services.
SB 96 – Requires a comparative analysis of the rates of reimbursement paid by Medicaid for certain services.
The bills have passed the Senate Health and Human Services Committee and are now being sent to the Finance Committee.
The members of the Finance Committee are:
Senator Joyce Woodhouse, Chair
Senator David Parks, Vice-Chair
Senator Moises Denis
Senator Aaron Ford
Senator Ben Kieckhefer
Senator Pete Goicoechea
Senator Becky Harris
The window of opportunity is now. Take the time to let your elected officials know that people with Alzheimer’s must have a safety net in place. The Medicaid waiver program needs to be expanded to provide for the 24 hour needs and safety of Nevadans with Alzheimer’s and dementia.
Thank you for helping us help Nevada’s Seniors.