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Many people may think that the steep cuts to Medicaid currently being proposed in Congress will only affect poor people, especially women and children.  The truth could not be further from that.  Even though elders comprise only 6% of Medicaid enrollees, long term services, such as nursing homes account for 42% of total spending.

A semi-private room in a nursing home in Tennessee costs approximately $70,000.  As we all know, we are living longer and health care costs are spiraling.  The result is that seniors are outliving their families and their resources and will need Medicaid, called TennCare here in Tennessee.

If Medicaid is cut, state governments will either restrict eligibility or lower the amounts they pay to nursing homes.

Read more. . .

 

According to a recent article in the New York Times, quoting the Harvard Women’s Health Study, “Dozens of studies have shown that people who have satisfying relationships with family, friends, and their community are happier, have fewer health problems, and live longer”  My 95 year old father is a wonderful example.  He has family to visit and eat dinner more than once a week, is involved with his church and participates in other community groups.  We should all be so lucky.

Read more from the article:

The National Association of Elder Law Attorneys, “NAELA,” which is in no way a partisan organization,  is reporting this morning as follows:

 

“Health care groups are decrying Republican senators for closing their doors to the public as they write legislation repealing and replacing ObamaCare. Senate Republicans are not holding public hearings or committee markups for their bill, a major departure from the traditional lawmaking process. Health care groups fear the final product will be released just a couple of days before the vote, minimizing time for feedback or for opposition to build. “There are lots of discussions happening behind closed doors, but it seems to be fairly well confined to the Senate itself,” said Dick Woodruff, vice president of federal relations for the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network. Aides say Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) is expected to send a draft bill to the Congressional Budget Office early this week, but he is not expected to publicly release the measure. Several interest groups said they were having no trouble scheduling meetings with Senate Republican staff and that the staffers generally appeared open to input. But many rank-and-file staffers themselves do not know what the emerging health care plan is, the groups said. Republican senators received a presentation of an outline of the health bill at their conference lunch last week, but Woodruff said even that information is tightly held.”

 

An article in the New York Times this morning explains what happens if your mother, who has $100,000, goes into a nursing home. 

If she lives two years or more, she will run out of money and will need Medicaid to stay in a nursing home. 

Cuts to Medicaid will jeopardize her health and “are a direct attack on our elderly, our disabled and our dignity.” 

Read more here.

 

Contact our firm if you want to plan for age and disability.

According to the New York Times, exercise may bolster the brain function and thinking skills of people with dementia, according to a new report. The study’s findings suggest that walking a few times per week might alter the trajectory of the disease and improve the physical well-being of people who develop a common form of age-related memory loss that otherwise has few treatments.