LTC Bullet: Where Do We Go From Here?
Friday, December 2, 2016
LTC Comment: Like it or not, the U.S. political world has turned upside down. LTC financing policy included. What was possible before, isn’t. What wasn’t, is? So, what should we do about it?
LTC BULLET: WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?
LTC Comment: Gale winds of change tipped over the political apple cart on November 8. Risks are greater now, but so are opportunities. Anything is possible again.
For the past eight years, your Center for Long-Term Care Reform has engaged in a holding action. Recognizing the political climate was not advantageous to achieve needed policy reforms, we focused on conducting fee-for-service studies. Our two-fold goal was (1) to produce the evidence and arguments we’d need to prevail when the political winds were blowing our way again and (2) to keep the Center financially viable during a time of declining support from our traditional funding sources.
We achieved goal #1. Since 2008, we’ve published 18 studies explaining the LTC financing problem and what needs to be done about it both nationally and in 12 key states, including California, New York, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Virginia and Georgia. Check our reports out here. We definitely know what to do and how to do it.
That’s where goal #2 comes in. Thanks to on-going financial support from stalwart Center members, including many LTCI carriers, distributors and producers, as well as some visionary LTC providers, we’ve kept the Center alive to re-engage the political fight for better LTC financing policy when the time is right again. That time has arrived.
Your Center should turn away now from fund raising and fee-for-service work toward doing what needs to be done to achieve major LTC policy change. That means writing for publication including op-eds and journal articles, contacting and educating key media sources, speaking at professional conferences, and working closely with national and state level legislators, policy makers, analysts and staff. Those are the activities that result in concrete policy reform (and have done for us in the past). Unfortunately, they are not activities that produce revenue, the life blood of any organization or movement.
Here’s our ask: redouble your support for the Center so we can take advantage of these new opportunities in the realm of public policy reform. If you’re a Center member, become a Premium Member. If you’re a Premium Member, step up to Premier Elite status. And if you are one of our critical corporate members, consider moving from Bronze to Silver to Gold or more. If you’ve supported the Center up to now, the time has come to maximize and capitalize on your investment. If you’re new, there’s never been a better time to invest in our work.
What is that work?
Medicare and Medicaid financing of long-term care are in a death spiral. Policies currently being pushed to expand and multiply government payment systems, including plans to create a new entitlement for long-term care, would hasten that inevitable collapse. So, what do we need to do instead? In a nutshell: return Medicaid LTC financing to the truly needy and create much stronger incentives for everyone else to plan early and save, invest or insure for long-term care so they can pay privately for care when they need it.
That’s our objective. It really is as simple as that, although the details of passing legislation and implementing new policies become quite complicated. Which is why it’s critical to publish, promulgate and promote the compelling evidence and reasoning we’ve spent decades developing and perfecting. Help us do that.
In a political hurricane, it’s hard to say for sure which way the winds are blowing. But one thing is certain: everything in the policy world is up for grabs right now. The best evidence, reasoning and recommendations can prevail. But only if they’re articulated widely and compellingly. That’s a job the Center for Long-Term Care Reform knows how to do. We seek your support to do it.
At long last, we have a unique opportunity to fix LTC financing policy: Seize it!