AUSTIN, Texas, June 17, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Saying a resolution to the longstanding shortfall between the actual cost of providing quality nursing home care and what the State actually reimburses skilled nursing facilities must rise in terms of being a public policy priority, the Texas Health Care Association (THCA) today said the 6% Medicaid rate increase ultimately passed by the Legislature is a needed step forward.
"Of the more than $350 million in biennial GR we were seeking to ensure Texas seniors' nursing home care is funded at the level actually deemed necessary by state health officials, the Legislature ultimately approved nearly $100 million – a needed step forward as we work to continue narrowing this funding gap," stated Tim Graves, President of THCA.
"While this did not resolve the Medicaid underfunding status quo, we made forward progress, and we must continue to work with the Legislature to build upon it by sustaining an educational process surrounding the vital importance of facilities to local seniors, communities' well-being, and good jobs," Graves continued.
The THCA leader said it must be a State priority to ensure Texas' most vulnerable frail, elderly and disabled Medicaid-dependent nursing home patients "can continue to access the quality care they deserve by making sure local nursing homes across the state remain operationally stable in the face of deep Medicaid and Medicare cuts."
The THCA leader encouraged lawmakers to continue examining the fact that local facilities in their districts are increasingly struggling with shrinking resources in the face of growing numbers of patients requiring the type of 24/7/365 care that can only be found in their local nursing home.
Founded in 1950, the Texas Health Care Association (THCA) is the largest long-term care association in Texas. THCA's membership is comprised of several hundred licensed non-profit and for-profit skilled nursing facilities (SNFs), specialized rehabilitation facilities and assisted living facilities in Texas. These facilities provide comprehensive, around-the-clock nursing care for chronically ill or short-term residents of all ages, along with rehabilitative and specialized medical programs. THCA also represents more than 190 long-term care businesses that provide products and services to the state's approximately 2,850 nursing homes and assisted living facilities. To learn more, visit http://txhca.org/ or connect with THCA on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
SOURCE Texas Health Care Association