LTC Bullet:  State Moves Toward Private LTC Financing Alternatives 

Tuesday, February 7, 2006 

Seattle-- 

LTC Comment:  A sense of the Senate resolution in New Mexico urges consideration of LTC insurance and home equity conversion to relieve Medicaid's fiscal woes.  More after the ***news.*** 

*** TODAY'S LTC BULLET is sponsored by Claude Thau, a Master General Agent who helps LTCi producers nationwide.  Claude is the lead author of Tillinghast Broker World Individual and Group LTCi Surveys.  His mentoring skills help you build whichever market suits you best (individuals, executive carve-out, multi-life, affinity, financial institutions, referrals from other professionals, etc.).  As a Long-Term Care Partnership-promoter in many capacities, Claude may be able to help your state implement a Partnership effectively.  Test Claude by calling 800-999-3026, x2241 to discuss opportunities or mailto:cthau@targetins.com . *** 

*** FREE BULLET.  If you are not a dues-paying member of the Center for Long-Term Care Reform, you are receiving today's LTC Bullet thanks to its sponsor, Claude Thau.  If you'd like to receive all the LTC Bullets and our daily LTC E-Alerts, please join the Center.  If you'd like to sponsor a Bullet yourself to reach an extensive audience of LTC experts, that's easy too.  To join the Center or sponsor a Bullet, contact Damon at 206-283-7036 or damon@centerltc.com.  He'll have you quickly in "The Zone" with access to all the Center's insider information. *** 

*** TERRY SAVAGE, the nationally syndicated financial columnist of the Chicago Sun-Times, sent us the following message upon passage of the Deficit Reduction Act's Medicaid reform measures:  "Congratulations, this is the reward for all your hard work.  And I know that's true, because I received so many notes after my mention in your Bullet.  A LOT of people are reading your stuff!"  That's one more great reason to sponsor an LTC Bullet. *** 

***  PURPOSE PRIZE.  As the first of 77 million baby boomers turn 60 in 2006, Civic Ventures, a nonprofit organization working to help America achieve the greatest return on experience, announces The Purpose Prize - five $100,000 investments in Americans over 60 whose creativity, talent and experience is transforming the way our nation addresses critical social problems.  Sixty semi-finalists ("60 at 60+") will also receive national recognition for their work.  To nominate someone or apply yourself, visit http://www.leadwithexperience.org/.  Application deadline is February 28, 2006.  The first awards will be made in June, 2006. *** 

 

LTC BULLET:  STATE MOVES TOWARD PRIVATE LTC FINANCING ALTERNATIVES 

LTC Comment:  Senate Memorial #9 is a sense of the Senate resolution introduced in New Mexico by State Senator Carroll H. Leavell and co-sponsored by State Senator Dede Feldman.  It lists the state's long-term care financing woes and recommends a study and a conference to identify private financing alternatives that can relieve the fiscal burden on Medicaid.  Senate Memorial #9 will be voted on any day now.  We bring you the text of the Memorial below.  If you have an interest in New Mexico or know someone there who does, please encourage passage of this measure.  New Mexico's legislature's website is http://legis.state.nm.us/lcs/.  You can find state legislators and their contact information there. 

For background, check out "LTC Bullet:  State Tackles the Real LTC Challenge,"

Tuesday, January 18, 2006 at http://www.centerltc.com/bullets/archives2006/602.htm.  There we reported on an excellent report by an ad hoc committee in New Mexico led by gerontologist and Alzheimer's Association advocate Dr. Ronald Lucchino.  Other states interested in preserving Medicaid as a long-term care safety net, could do no better than to start by reading "Alternatives to Medicaid Financing for Long-Term Care," which remains available on the Center for Long-Term Care Reform's website at http://www.centerltc.com/New_Mexico_LTC_Report.pdf. 

-------------- 

Following is the text of . . . 

Senate Memorial 9, 47th Legislature - State of New Mexico - Second Session, 2006
Introduced by Carroll H. Leavell
 

A MEMORIAL REQUESTING THAT THE AGING AND LONG-TERM SERVICES DEPARTMENT LEAD A STUDY ON THE FINANCIAL IMPACT OF FACILITY-BASED CARE ON THE MEDICAID BUDGET AND IDENTIFY ALTERNATIVE MODELS OF FINANCING LONG-TERM CARE. 

     WHEREAS, the population of New Mexico over the age of sixty-five is growing and will double by the year 2025 and, due to medical advances, people are living longer, but not necessarily healthier, lives; and  

     WHEREAS, the population of people over the age of eighty-five is growing twice as fast as that of people over sixty-five and these individuals are the most frail of the elderly; and  

     WHEREAS, a large and growing number of aging people are suffering from the ravages of Alzheimer's disease and are unable to care for themselves; and  

     WHEREAS, the Medicaid program in New Mexico covers the cost of nursing home care and home- and community-based services for the elderly and disabled and provides in excess of two hundred twenty-one million dollars ($221,000,000) in combined state and federal funding for these services; and  

     WHEREAS, the cost of private nursing home care is unaffordable for most people in need of nursing home care and, therefore, most families have come to rely on Medicaid to fund this type of care for their elderly relatives; and  

     WHEREAS, people are finding that qualifying for Medicaid long-term services is relatively easy, despite seemingly restrictive eligibility rules, and that this relaxed access has resulted in an entitlement mentality regarding financing of long-term care services, and use of private, out-of-pocket and insurance financing for long-term services has languished while Medicaid costs have skyrocketed; and  

     WHEREAS, long-term care insurance, home equity conversion and other alternative mechanisms of private financing have been little used;  

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO that the aging and long-term services department be requested to conduct a study, in cooperation with the human services department and the appropriate statewide organizations representing aging and long-term services, on the financial impact of facility-based and home- and community-based long-term care on the Medicaid budget and identify alternative models of financing long-term care; and  

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the study identify appropriate incentives to encourage self-care and the use of insurance, explore potential ways to limit asset identification and asset transfer and promote maximum Medicaid estate recovery; and  

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the aging and long-term services department be requested to support the efforts of a statewide organization representing the needs of people with Alzheimer's disease, and other organizations as appropriate, to hold a conference exploring alternative models of financing long-term care services; and  

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the aging and long-term services department be requested to develop recommendations on implementation of alternative mechanisms of financing long-term care services and report the findings and recommendations to the legislative health and human services committee in October 2006; and  

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that copies of this memorial be transmitted to the secretaries of aging and long-term services and human services.