News & Communications

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​AHCA/NCAL is at the forefront of the long term care profession, helping to shape the future of care for our nation’s seniors and individuals with disabilities. With this leadership comes responsibility to keep AHCA/NCAL members, the press, and the public informed on important issues that impact long term care.​​​​ 

Stay up to date on all the latest information by following our social media pages on 
Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube​

​​​​​

 Untitled

 

 

As 117th Congress Gets Underway, Focus Must Remain on Prioritizing Long Term Care Through the Pandemichttps://www.ahcancal.org/News-and-Communications/Press-Releases/Pages/As-117th-Congress-Gets-Underway,-Focus-Must-Remain-On-Prioritizing-Long-Term-Care-Through-The-Pandemic.aspxAs 117th Congress Gets Underway, Focus Must Remain on Prioritizing Long Term Care Through the Pandemic1/21/2021 5:00:00 AM<p>​</p><div>As members of the 117th Congress begin their work in Washington, D.C., lawmakers will have numerous proposals on their legislative agendas. But as the country continues to battle COVID-19, residents and staff in long term care must remain a top focus.</div><div><br></div><div>Long term care facilities have been at the forefront of the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. In spite of the heroic work of dedicated caregivers across the country, nursing home, assisted living, and other long term care residents account for nearly 40 percent of COVID-related deaths in the United States, while comprising only six percent of total cases. </div><div><br></div><div>Long term care residents are among the most vulnerable to COVID-19, yet many providers still face significant challenges nearly a year into their response to the pandemic. Congress must make long term care residents and frontline workers a priority within the health care system. </div><div><br></div><div>The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) is urging Congress to add another $100 billion to the Provider Relief Fund, as was passed in the HEROES Act last year, and allocate $20 billion of this fund to long term care. Additionally, AHCA/NCAL calls on lawmakers to ensure long term care facilities are prioritized for access to testing and proper personal protective equipment—critical resources needed to combat COVID-19 in facilities. </div><div><br></div><div>Read more below on specific areas within the long term care sector that require immediate attention from lawmakers on Capitol Hill.  </div><div><br></div><div><strong>Continuing To Fight The Pandemic</strong> </div><div><span style="font-size:11pt;">While vaccine distribution has begun in long term care facilities nationwide, there is still a long road ahead. Residents and staff must continue to be prioritized for the vaccines, as well as the tools they need to win the war, namely adequate personal protective equipment (PPE), timely testing and staffing support. This is especially important as cases continue to rise among the general population and long term care facilities experience a record-breaking number of cases and deaths. Ongoing support from the federal government is critical in order for providers to continue protectin</span><span style="font-size:11pt;">g residents and staff. </span><br></div><div><br></div><div><strong>Staffing</strong> </div><div>Staffing shortages have been an ongoing challenge for long term care facilities – a challenge that has only worsened in the wake of the pandemic. Staff members have missed work to take care of family members or have fallen ill with the virus and been forced to quarantine. A November <a href="/News-and-Communications/Fact-Sheets/FactSheets/State-of-Nursing-Home-Industry_Dec2020.pdf" target="_blank">survey</a> by the American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) found that staffing has been the top cost in response to COVID-19, with nine out of 10 nursing homes hiring additional staff and/or paying staff overtime, underscoring the need for immediate solutions that will help alleviate this challenge. </div><div><br></div><div><strong>Declining Occupancy</strong></div><div>Long term care facilities have seen a dramatic decline in occupancy because of the pandemic. With fewer new admissions, particularly short-term rehabilitation patients, the growing number of empty beds fuels financial losses, underscoring the need for additional funding in order to keep facilities’ doors open for their current and future residents.  </div><div><br></div><div><strong>Medicaid Underfunding</strong></div><div>Medicaid underfunding has plagued nursing homes for years. The perennial gap between Medicaid reimbursement rates and the actual cost of care has forced nursing homes to operate on shoestring budgets and suffer net losses year after year. These financial strains have been magnified by COVID-19, creating an alarming threat to the entire long term care sector. Adequate Medicaid funding is a long-term solution that will enable providers to invest in critical areas that will improve overall care. </div><div><br></div><div><strong>Nursing Home Closures</strong> </div><div>Nursing home closures have risen steadily for the past several years, but COVID-19 has increased the possibility of more providers shutting their doors. Nursing home closures leave residents displaced from their long-standing communities and loved ones and reduce their options for quality care, especially in rural areas. The same November survey AHCA/NCAL found that 90 percent of nursing homes are currently operating at a loss, and two-thirds of nursing home providers say they will not be able to sustain operations for another year at the current cost. Assisted living communities face similar financial challenges after receiving minimal federal aid due to the pandemic, with more than half operating at a loss and a similar percentage fearing their doors will close within a year without further assistance. We must ensure nursing homes and assisted living communities have the financial stability to continue providing high-quality care.</div><div><br></div><div><strong>ABOUT AHCA/NCAL</strong></div><div>The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) represents more than 14,000 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 <a href="/Pages/default.aspx" target="_blank">www.ahcancal.org</a>.<br></div>As members of the 117th Congress begin their work in Washington, D.C., lawmakers will have numerous proposals on their legislative agendas.
AHCA/NCAL Issues Statement Congratulating Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on Becoming 46th President, 49th Vice President of the United Stateshttps://www.ahcancal.org/News-and-Communications/Press-Releases/Pages/AHCANCAL-Issues-Statement-Congratulating-Joe-Biden-And-Kamala-Harris-On-Becoming-46th-President,-49th-Vice-President-Of-The.aspxAHCA/NCAL Issues Statement Congratulating Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on Becoming 46th President, 49th Vice President of the United States1/20/2021 5:00:00 AM<p>​</p><div><strong>WASHINGTON, D.C.</strong> – The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL), representing more than 14,000 nursing homes and long term care facilities across the country that provide care to approximately five million people each year, released the following statement following the inauguration of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.</div><div><br></div><div>The statement is attributable to Mark Parkinson, President and CEO of AHCA/NCAL:</div><div><br></div><div>“We congratulate President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris on their inauguration, and we look forward to working with the new Administration and 117th Congress to develop meaningful solutions for the challenges long term care providers face – many of which have been magnified by the pandemic.</div><div><br></div><div>“There is still an immediate crisis in front of us. Long term care providers are working with pharmacies and state officials to help administer life-saving vaccines swiftly to residents and staff, and we are hopeful we have reached a turning point in our fight against the virus. However, with record-breaking numbers of COVID cases among the general population and in long term care facilities, we cannot let our guard down. Lawmakers must continue to ensure that long term care facilities are made a priority for the resources they need to protect our most vulnerable citizens and our health care heroes on the frontlines.</div><div><br></div><div>“At the same time, we must reflect on the lessons we have learned throughout the pandemic and apply them toward strengthening our health care system. We will work collaboratively with the Biden Administration and Members of Congress to achieve our goals and create a better future for our nation’s seniors."</div><div><br></div><div><strong>ABOUT AHCA/NCAL</strong></div><div>The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) represents more than 14,000 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 <a href="/Pages/default.aspx" target="_blank">www.ahcancal.org</a>.<br></div>AHCA/NCAL released the following statement following the inauguration of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.
Analysis COVID-19 Outbreaks in Nursing Homeshttps://www.ahcancal.org/News-and-Communications/Fact-Sheets/FactSheets/Analysis-COVID-Outbreaks-in-Nursing-Homes.pdfAnalysis COVID-19 Outbreaks in Nursing Homes1/14/2021 5:00:00 AMLocation of a nursing home, asymptomatic spread and availability of testing were determining factors in COVID-19 outbreaks according to independent analyses by leading academic and health care experts as well as government researchers.
Vaccine Rollout Continues In Long Term Care Facilities Nationwide, Offering Hope To Residents, Families And Staffhttps://www.ahcancal.org/News-and-Communications/Press-Releases/Pages/Vaccine-Rollout-Continues-In-Long-Term-Care-Facilities-Nationwide,-Offering-Hope-To-Residents,-Families-And-Staff.aspxVaccine Rollout Continues In Long Term Care Facilities Nationwide, Offering Hope To Residents, Families And Staff1/12/2021 5:00:00 AM<p></p><div><a href="https://cvshealth.com/sites/default/files/cvs-health-covid-19-vaccination-data.pdf" target="_blank">Every state</a> in the country has activated its pharmacy partnership program for nursing homes, and so far, the response has been positive. As of January 11, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data shows that more than 900,000 doses have been administered, and 95 percent of nursing homes expect to complete their first rounds of inoculations in the next two weeks.</div><div><br></div><div>Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont <a href="https://ctmirror.org/2021/01/08/as-infections-spike-connecticut-reaches-milestone-in-vaccinations/" target="_blank">announced</a> last Friday that the state completed administering the first doses of the vaccine to all nursing homes, becoming the first in the country to do so. The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) is encouraging other governors to follow suit and swiftly activate their vaccination programs in all long term care settings, including assisted living communities.</div><div><br></div><div>Given the asymptomatic and pre-symptomatic spread of this virus, combined with rapidly increasing community spread throughout the country, the vaccines will literally be a lifesaver for thousands of residents and expedite the reopening of long term care facilities to family members and loved ones.</div><div><br></div><div>Headlines illustrate the positive impact the vaccines are having on the long term care sector:</div><div><br></div><div><ul><li><a href="https://www.bostonherald.com/2020/12/28/massachusetts-nursing-homes-get-their-first-shot-at-coronavirus-vaccine-one-of-the-best-days-of-my-life/" target="_blank">Boston Herald</a>: Massachusetts Nursing Homes Get Their First Shot At Coronavirus Vaccine: ‘One Of The Best Days Of My Life’</li><li><a href="https://www.chicagotribune.com/coronavirus/ct-coronavirus-chicago-vaccine-lightfoot-expanding-distribution-20201228-b3yptypqu5gufaudsjl5omusii-story.html" target="_blank">Chicago Tribune</a>: ‘The Light At The End Of The Tunnel’: COVID-19 Vaccinations Begin In Chicago’s Hard-Hit Nursing Homes As Mayor Asks For Continued Vigilance Against Virus</li><li><a href="https://www.berkshireeagle.com/news/local/a-lot-of-hope-for-the-future-vaccination-campaign-begins-at-beleaguered-lenox-nursing-home/article_023883fa-4957-11eb-9538-1381252fe3af.html" target="_blank">The Berkshire Eagle</a>: ‘A Lot Of Hope For The Future’: Vaccination Campaign Begins At Beleaguered Lenox Nursing Home</li><li><a href="https://www.brproud.com/news/local-news/its-been-a-long-road-golden-age-begins-vaccination-process-first-long-term-care-facility-in-area-to-start/" target="_blank">BR Proud</a>: ‘It’s Been A Long Road,’ Golden Age Begins Vaccination Process, First Long-Term Care Facility In Area To Start</li><li><a href="https://www.kcbd.com/2020/12/29/we-have-waited-since-march-this-nursing-home-residents-staff-receiving-covid-vaccines-through-cvs/" target="_blank">KCBD-TV (NBC-Lubbock, TX)</a>: ‘We Have Waited Since March For This’: Nursing Home Residents And Staff Receiving COVID-19 Vaccines Through CVS</li><li><a href="https://www.expressnews.com/news/local/article/It-feels-like-a-big-relief-San-Antonio-15834979.php" target="_blank">The San Antonio Express-News</a>: ‘It Feels Like A Big Relief;’ San Antonio Assisted Living Residents Get First Dose Of Coronavirus Vaccine Tuesday</li><li><a href="https://wxow.com/2020/12/29/a-lot-of-joy-wi-long-term-care-workers-residents-get-first-vaccines/" target="_blank">WXOW-TV (ABC-La Crosse, WI)</a>: ‘A Lot Of Joy’: WI Long-Term Care Workers, Residents Get First Vaccines</li><li><a href="https://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/arizona-health/2020/12/27/covid-19-vaccinations-start-arizona-nursing-homes/4016014001/" target="_blank">The Arizona Republic</a>: COVID-19 Vaccines To Begin At Arizona Nursing Homes: ‘They Are Really Celebrating’ </li></ul></div><div><span style="font-size:11pt;"><br>Vaccinating the millions of vulnerable seniors and frontline workers in long term care facilities is a significant undertaking that requires many moving pieces. While the desire for a swift rollout is understandable, AHCA/NCAL has <a href="/News-and-Communications/Press-Releases/Pages/AHCA-NCAL-Issues-Statement-Regarding-COVID-19-Vaccine-Rollout-In-Long-Term-Care.aspx" target="_blank">urged</a> a thoughtful and targeted approach.</span><br></div><div><br></div><div>AHCA/NCAL has launched the <a href="/News-and-Communications/Pages/GetVaccinated.aspx" target="_blank">#GetVaccinated campaign</a> to encourage all residents, families and staff members to consent to the vaccine, as well as celebrate when vaccines are administered to residents and caregivers. AHCA/NCAL remains hopeful that uptake for the vaccine will improve as the pharmacy partnership program continues in the coming weeks and months as more clinics are scheduled.</div><div><br></div><div><strong>ABOUT AHCA/NCAL</strong></div><div>The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) represents more than 14,000 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 <a href="/Pages/default.aspx" target="_blank">www.ahcancal.org</a>.<br></div>Every state in the country has activated its pharmacy partnership program for nursing homes, and so far, the response has been positive.

  • Preparing for Onsite Vaccination Clinics
    1.22.2021
    As LTC facilities are gearing up for their second clinics through the CDC’s LTC Pharmacy Partnership Program, it’s important to provide accurate and timely information to your matched pharmacy.
    Read More
  • Executive Order Issued to Protect Worker Safety and Health
    1.22.2021
    President Biden issued an Executive Order on protecting worker health and safety.
    Read More
  • Provider Relief Fund Reporting Registration Updates
    1.21.2021
    Members have been contacting AHCA/NCAL with problems using the PRF Reporting Portal.
    Read More
  • Reporting Possible Adverse Events Post-Vaccination to the CDC
    1.21.2021
    The CDC is closely monitoring COVID-19 vaccine safety through several robust monitoring systems.
    Read More

 Featured Video

​Reports & Newsletters

 Members-Only Newsletters

Capitol Connection
Get the latest on issues happening on Capitol Hill and throughout Washington, as well as AHCA/NCAL events and programs in this biweekly email.


 
NCAL Connections
NCAL's version of Capitol Connection, NCAL Connections offers the latest on issues happening in Washington, as well as events and programs specifically tailored for assisted living providers.

 ID/DD and NFP Providers

ID/DD Digest
Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (ID/DD) Digest is a monthly publication for ID/DD service providers. Content includes information ranging from events, AHCA’s ID/DD grassroots efforts, AHCA’s ID/DD Committee focuses and work, and other important updates impacting providers and the individuals they serve in ICF/IID and group homes for ID/DD. ​To receive ID/DD Digest, please contact Dana Ritchie.
NFP News
Not for Profit (NFP) News is a monthly publications for NFP service providers. Content includes information ranging from AHCA’s annual Congressional Briefing fly-in event, AHCA’s NFP Day at the AHCA/NCAL Convention & Expo, AHCA’s work with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and other important updates. ​​To receive NFP News, please contact Dana Ritchie.