Louisiana Tops ADAPT List Of Worst Long-Term Care States
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
October 9, 2002
NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA--The state of Louisiana is at the top of a list of the 10 worst states for community-based long-term care services.
The disability rights group ADAPT compiled the list based on official Medicaid statistics and a survey of advocates across the nation done last month.
In Louisiana, less than ten percent of Medicaid Long Term Care money is spent on community alternatives instead of nursing homes and Intermediate Care Facilities for the Mentally Retarded (ICF-MR). Of the other 90 percent that is spent on nursing homes, 69 percent of that goes toward facilities to house both older and young people with disabilities.
David Hood, Secretary of Louisiana's Department of Health and Hospitals, told The Advocate newspaper that he is not surprised at the ranking. "I would say in general they are on target, but they don't recognize that we have acknowledged the problem and are trying to do something about it," Hood said.
According to ADAPT, the second worst state is Mississippi, followed by Washington, D.C., Illinois, Indiana, Tennessee, Nevada, New Jersey, Ohio and Georgia.
"ADAPT's announcement comes right when the nursing home lobby is meeting here in New Orleans, looking for even more ways to capture federal dollars and preserve their government subsidized monopoly, while our friends and relatives remain incarcerated in institutional settings," said Lois Simpson, Executive Director of the Advocacy Center in New Orleans.
ADAPT and other disability rights groups are backing H.R. 3612, otherwise known as MiCASSA (Medicaid Community-Based Attendant Services and Supports Act). MiCASSA would change the system that currently allows most Medicaid money to go toward nursing homes and other institutions.
"Clearly, we need MiCASSA now... to give people real choice and to put a stop to this corporate welfare for the nursing home industry," Simpson said in a press statement.