Alzheimer's disease

NC GOP cuts to Medicaid put elderly at risk

Taking the "assisted" out of assisted living:

The current budget will limit special assistance eligibility to people who earn below 100 percent of the federal poverty level ($11,670 for an individual annually, or $972 per month). Anyone looking to receive special assistance after Nov. 1 who earns more than that amount will no longer qualify.

“That could be extremely problematic,” said Jenny Gadd, the group home manager for Alberta Professional Services, which runs several group homes for people with mental health issues in the Triangle and Triad. “It’s hard to tell what the eligibility really is going to look like, but that could really affect people in group homes."

Once again, the people who would have been included in a Medicaid expansion are suffering unnecessarily at the hands of those navel-gazers who can afford premium care. Every legislator who supported this provision should have to take care of an Alzheimer's patient in their home for a couple of weeks, just to see what that entails. It's an eye-opener, believe me.

NC GOP looks to cut pay for Alzheimer's care

Taking budget-cutting to a disgusting level:

Families dealing with Alzheimer’s disease, and the care providers they hire, are sweating over proposed cuts to state Medicaid payments for elder care. The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services is looking for a $2.40 an hour decrease in what it pays for in-home and in-facility care. The new rate would be $13.12 an hour per person.

“There’s not going to be an easy answer and a painless answer,” Blust said. “And it is just chewing up the budget.”

The problem is, you would rather inflict real pain on those who are virtually helpless, instead of inflicting imaginary pain on the wealthiest of individuals in our state. Here's some scientific reality for you, Einstein: just as improvements in battlefield trauma treatment have created many more crippled (yet living) soldiers than we had from previous wars, medical breakthroughs that have extended the average lifespan of people have created a growing group of those who succumb to Alzheimer's and other brain-related diseases. And cutting the income of caregivers will only result in unnecessary suffering, and likely injuries that could/should have been prevented, which will eat up those labor-saving dollars. Don't do it.

Alzheimer's patients at risk of Medicaid cuts

And of course they aren't aware they're at risk:

Changes to state Medicaid rules that will cut benefits to group home residents across the state will also affect between 3,000 and 4,000 people with Alzheimer's disease who live in adult care facilities, sources close to state proceedings told WRAL News Wednesday.

I will freely admit that many of the issues I blog about are not from experience, but from research, the vast majority of which I glean from online sources. But this is one issue I learned about firsthand, and I will likely spend the rest of my life trying to repair the parts of my heart that broke as a result.

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