Bullet: LTC Embed Reports
from the Policy Front, MD and DC
Thursday, July 6, 2006
LTC Comment: Our
fight for rational long-term care policy moves to Maryland and
Washington, DC next week from which we'll send daily reports to members.
What's up?, after the ***news.***
*** TAKE AWAY from today's Bullet: If you are within reach of Hagerstown, MD, please attend the
hearing described in today's Bullet to show your support for rational
LTC policy. Key facts:
"Roundtable About the Future of Long-Term Care and
Medicaid" on Monday, July 10, 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. at the
Washington County Commissioners Meeting Room, 100 West Washington
Street, Hagerstown, MD, 2nd floor, Room 227, July 10, 2006, 1:00 p.m. -
4:00 p.m. Now, please read the following Bullet to know why we want and
need you there. If you are
willing to help defray the cost of the Center's participation in this
hearing, please send your contribution to the Center for Long-Term Care
Reform, 2212 Queen Anne Avenue North, #110, Seattle, Washington, 98109.
*** TODAY'S LTC BULLET IS SPONSORED BY OAK STREET
FUNDING. Oak Street Funding
meets the unique borrowing needs of insurance agency owners to secure
affordable financing without selling their books of business. By lending against policy renewal commissions, Oak Street
Funding provides the liquidity owners need to pay off debt, hire
additional staff or invest in serious marketing initiatives to propel
continued growth. For
details, check out www.oakstreetfunding.com and contact Curt Vahle,
Field Sales Manager, at 317-428-3806 or firstname.lastname@example.org. We thank Mr. Vahle and Oak Street Funding for sponsoring
today's LTC Bullet and for supporting the Center for Long-Term Care
Reform. To sponsor a Bullet
yourself, please contact Damon@centerltc.com or 206-283-7036. ***
NEW LTC FORUM. Don't miss
the Center for Long-Term Care Reform's new LTC Forum for members. After you register with Damon at 206-283-7036 or email@example.com,
you'll be able to post messages, ask questions, or respond to other
members in a private, members-only online "bulletin board." For details, consult "LTC Bullet: The New LTC Dialogue," June 29, 2006 in The Zone at http://www.centerltc.com/members/ltcbullets/641.htm.
Not yet a member? That's easy to fix. Contact
Damon as above and he'll have you in The Zone, receiving all our daily
publications, and posting to the new LTC Forum in a jiffy. ***
LTC BULLET: LTC
EMBED REPORTS FROM THE POLICY FRONT, MD AND DC
LTC Comment: People who love the dysfunctional long-term care status quo because they profit from it are bashing members of Congress for their votes on the Deficit Reduction Act.
We reported on this problem in "LTC Bullet:
Let's Fight Back!," Tuesday, June 13, 2006.
Read it here: http://www.centerltc.com/bullets/archives2006/636.htm
In a nutshell, our "Let's Fight Back"
Bullet recounted the dilemma of a Maryland Congressman who voted for the
DRA in order to preserve Medicaid LTC benefits for people truly in need
and to encourage private financing alternatives like insurance and
Instead of plaudits, that vote earned him attacks
from Medicaid planners in his district who saw their cash cow--Medicaid
one example from an op-ed in a newspaper in the Congressman's district:
"The legislation [DRA] now penalizes individuals for making
gifts to a citizen's church and favorite charity.
Additionally, the act punishes routine Christmas and birthday
presents of cash to family members."
claim is preposterous of course because the Social Security Act clearly
states that assets must be transferred for the purpose of qualifying for
Medicaid to cause a penalty. Gifts
or donations for other purposes are exempt.
Nothing in the DRA changed that fact.
In truth, the DRA strengthened "hardship" protections
to prevent unfair or arbitrary imposition of Medicaid eligibility rules.
this kind of irresponsible demagoguery scared the Congressman's
constituents who followed up with letters full of complaints about
problems that don't exist.
get the facts straight, correct the record, and fight back, the
Congressman contacted the Center for Long-Term Care Reform. We advised the Congressman and his staff about Medicaid and
LTC financing policy. We
published an op-ed telling the truth about the DRA in the same local
newspaper that had run the Medicaid planner's broadside.
And we agreed to come to Maryland to testify at a hearing and to
help in other ways.
hearing is scheduled for Monday, July 10 in Hagerstown, Maryland.
Details follow. Witnesses will include myself AND the Medicaid planning
attorney who lodged the public attack on the Congressman. That should be interesting!
besides us, witnesses will include some big guns in LTC policy:
Dennis Smith, the head fed for Medicaid at the Centers for
Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS); Tony McCann, Secretary of the
Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (which includes the
state's Medicaid agency); and Grace-Marie Turner, President of the Galen
Institute and a voting member of the national Medicaid Commission.
below is the press release announcing the hearing or
addressed to "constituents," this is an open meeting.
Please attend if you can. Medicaid
planners will be well-represented in the audience.
It would sure help to have friends and supporters of the Center
for Long-Term Care Reform there also.
participating in this hearing, I will be in the Maryland and DC area
most of the week. I'll
attend part of the Medicaid Commission meeting taking place in
Arlington, VA. I'll meet
one-on-one with Secretary McCann. I'll
visit with the President and CEO of the American Health Care
Association. I'm setting up meetings on the Hill with members of the new
"Long-Term Care Caucus" in the House of Representatives and
their staffs. And I'll be
doing some briefings in the area for senior financial advisers.
support for this work is much appreciated.
Immediate Release: June 30,
Lisa Lyons Wright at 202-225-2721 or 202-225-9554 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Roscoe Bartlett Invites Constituents to Attend a Roundtable about the
Future of Long-Term Care and Medicaid on Monday, July 10, 1:00 p.m. -
4:00 p.m. in
DC - Congressman Roscoe Bartlett invites constituents to attend a Small
Business roundtable about the future of long-term care and Medicaid on
Monday, July 10 between 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. in Hagerstown, Maryland.
Congressman Bartlett is Vice Chairman of the House Small Business
Committee that will conduct the roundtable.
The roundtable will take place in the Washington County
Commissioners Meeting Room located at 100 West Washington Street on the
second floor in room 227. A
list of invited witnesses is attached.
Bartlett said, "Congress recently made changes to the Medicaid
program as part of the Deficit Reduction Act.
The Deficit Reduction Act is projected to save taxpayers $39
billion over the next five years. This
roundtable is designed to answer questions about these changes and how
they will affect the future of Medicaid and long-term care for many
care is one of the most significant demographic and fiscal challenges of
this century and of particular importance because of America's rapidly
aging population. In 2000,
there were an estimated 9.5 million people with long-term care needs in
the U.S., including six million elderly and 3.5 non-elderly.
These numbers are projected to grow dramatically in the coming
years, especially after 2030 when the baby boom generation begins to
reach 85. The senior
population-12.4% in 2000-is predicted to rise to 20.6% by 2050.
paid for by federal and state taxpayers has become a primary way of
financing long-term care for elderly people in nursing homes. Medicaid's mission is to provide a safety net of healthcare
for those who truly need it. The
current mix of financing for long-term care, in which a significant
share of financing comes from government programs, adds to the pressures
that the federal budget will experience with the aging of the baby-boom
has been the federal entitlement program with the fastest rate of
spending increase. Expenditures
are topping $300 billion and rising 8% annually.
In total, Medicaid's expenditures for long-term care for elderly
people since 1992 have grown at an average annual rate of about 5
percent. The Congressional
Budget Office estimates that in 2004, Medicaid's payments for
institutional care for seniors, including both state and federal
expenditures, totaled about $36.5 billion or about 77% of all Medicaid
long-term care spending. Accounting
for about 40 percent of total expenditures on nursing facilities,
Medicaid's payments cover the care of more than half of all elderly
nursing home residents.
Future of Long-Term Care and Medicaid
County Commissioners Meeting Room
Honorable Donald Manzullo (R-16-IL)
Honorable Roscoe Bartlett (R-6-MD)
S. Anthony ("Tony") McCann
Gregory Stangel, II
Michael G. Day