We’ve talked quite a bit lately about the crisis nursing homes across the state are under due, in large part, to the state’s hefty proposed cuts to Medicaid funding and how this has been compounded by Federal Medicare cuts. Ultimately, nursing home reform advocates are concerned that these cuts will lead to facilities reducing their workforce which, in turn, increases the likelihood of accidents and decreases the number of qualified staff to respond to these accidents.
A recent article from MSNBC looks at this problem on a national level and comes to many of the same conclusions, but throws a few wrinkles into a problem that experts say is now reaching the “tipping point.” For starters, as life expectancies grow and a large amount of baby boomers are entering retirement, leading analysts to project that, by 2030, the number of individuals over the age of 80 is expected to increase by 50% and the number of individuals over the age of 100 is expected to double.
Accordingly, there will likely be a vast increase in the number of individuals residing in nursing homes. Part of the cause for concern comes from the fact that it is a bad sign for the quality of care that can be expected for these individuals when the population is increasing and the funding for these facilities is decreasing — these two figures moving in opposite direction has many experts concerned.
The other main problem that this article points out is that, beyond the simple day-to-day funding to the facilities themselves being slashed by budget cuts, the physical quality of these facilities is also in peril. Many of today’s nursing homes are the product of Federal funding initiatives of the mid-to-late 1960’s, and not only has this funding long since dried up, the Great Recession saw private funding to build nursing homes drop by 1/3 between 2007-2011. Ultimately, this leaves us with the multi-level problem of an increasing elderly population transitioning into outdated facilities facing massive government funding cuts on both the state and federal level, not to mention that private funding has also drastically tapered off. At the end of the day, the most likely to be hurt by all of these factors are the residents themselves, and this is why it is becoming all the more important to investigate these factors when choosing a facility for your loved ones.
You can contact us here 24/7/365 (and we really mean that as we will answer our phone) if you have anyquestions and to learn how we may be able to help you or your loved one who has been a victim of nursing home abuse or neglect – in particular, you will find that we listen, take your phone calls and e-mails (and even text messages!). We would be honored to help you with your matters – large or small.