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.