As Emergency Medicaid Relief Remains Stalled on Capitol Hill, AHCA/NCAL Readies Initiation Next Week of National “Driving for Quality Care” RV Tour
With National Polling Data Validating Support for Federal Medicaid Relief, 40 States Plus the District of Columbia Grass Roots Offensive Will Ensure Federal, State Lawmakers Know Quality Patient Care, Frontline Care Jobs Jeopardized by Delay
Washington, DC – The President and CEO of the American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) today expressed ongoing disappointment that Congressional passage of emergency Medicaid relief (FMAP) remains stalled on Capitol Hill, and said exerting grass roots pressure is the key tool remaining in the long term care profession’s arsenal to ensure the relief legislation is passed expeditiously.
“Congressional passage of emergency Medicaid relief is urgent to protecting seniors’ access to quality care, preserving the jobs of the front line care staff who help improve seniors’ quality of life, and defending the fundamental right of every American to live dignified, productive and healthy lives in old age,” said AHCA/NCAL President, Bruce Yarwood. “The kickoff of the AHCA/NCAL Driving for Quality Care grassroots RV tour is now perfectly timed to ramp up pressure on our lawmakers to act on this vital legislation as state budget crises persist and seniors’ access to care is imperiled.”
Yarwood pointed to his recent Capitol Hill Capitol Hill briefing to release a new national survey from The Mellman Group (D) (1000 LVs, 5/13-17, +/- 3.1%) finding Americans, by significant margins, strongly support passage of federal Medicaid relief and vehemently oppose any additional state Medicaid cuts. The survey findings, he said, further underscore the need for Congress to act. 62% of voters favored additional federal funding for Medicaid.
“Considering the squeeze on seniors’ care and facility operations caused by federal Medicare cuts of nearly $27 billion over ten years – put in place in just the past eight months – FMAP serves as the critical safety net protecting seniors and the jobs of the front line caregivers who make a qualitative difference in patient outcomes,” the AHCA/NCAL President continued. Further, he noted the $4.6 billion annual differential between the cost of providing quality long term and rehabilitative care and what is actually reimbursed to providers by Medicaid, according to Eljay LLC, is an additional fundamental rationale for passing emergency Medicaid relief.
Yarwood said Driving for Quality Care will empower senior and citizen activist alike by providing the opportunity to sign a national petition, write their local legislator, recruit supporters via social media, and follow the tour’s progress from an interactive website, www.drivingforqualitycare.com. The tour kicks off on Tuesday, June 29th at The Methodist Home in Washington, DC and will proceed to the first stop in Culpeper, VA. See www.drivingforqualitycare com for the complete itinerary.
The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) represent more than 11,000 non-profit and proprietary skilled nursing centers, assisted living communities, sub-acute centers and homes for individuals with intellectual and development disabilities. By delivering solutions for quality care, AHCA/NCAL aims to improve the lives of the millions of frail, elderly and individuals with disabilities who receive long term or post-acute care in our member facilities each day. For more information, please visit www.ahca.org or www.ncal.org.