Elder Home Care Advocate Blasts Raimondo on Budget Cuts
Saturday, April 07, 2018
After Raimondo put in place three successive increases with child care providers, the RI Partnership for Home Care claims that "home care professionals such as registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, physical therapists, occupational therapists and others have not seen an increase since October of 2001."
The Rhode Island Partnership for Home Care’s Executive Director Nicholas Oliver released the following statement:
“Governor Raimondo continues to ignore the state’s ongoing home care crisis. While the Governor and the General Assembly have slightly increased Medicaid reimbursement rates for home care nurse assistants and homemakers working on state cases over the past two fiscal years, it has done nothing to strengthen our paraprofessional workforce to encourage workers to seek jobs and retain their employment in this field. It has merely increased in parity with the state’s minimum wage increases as to not fall out of compliance. Meanwhile, our Governor continues to expect that nurses, therapists and social workers in home care will remain working on state cases with the same wages as they did seventeen years ago.
Governor Raimondo’s administration began with an initiative to ‘Reinvent Medicaid’ that included rebalancing long-term care financing toward home and community-based services, such as home care and transform our healthcare system to encourage more people to work in industries of growing need, including home care. By the end of her term, if the current path remains, Rhode Island will continue to face barriers to accessing home care due to inadequate funding to supply the workforce necessary to meet the growing demand and an unstable and unresolved UHIP system causing long lines at DHS offices and significant delays to properly manage current and new cases. With the Governor’s proposal to shift reimbursement away from the state’s managed care organization, Neighborhood Health Plan of Rhode Island, which has the potential to lower reimbursement rates back to the state’s fee-for-service rates, and the declining supply of home care agencies ready to take state cases in the shadow of the recent closures, such as Homefront Health Care and the VNA of Rhode Island, Rhode Island’s Page 1 of 2 Medicaid home care industry has been left inadequately funded in an unstable business climate caused by Governor Raimondo. We need the General Assembly to find the funding to support all lines of Medicaid home care services and ensure that medically-fragile children, adults with disabilities and the elderly can receive the services needed to remain safe at home and away from costly skilled nursing facilities at taxpayers’ expense.”
Related Slideshow: GoLocal: Benchmark Poll, October 2017
Next year, in November of 2018, there will be a statewide general election for Governor and many other state offices. How likely is it that you will vote in this election?
Will you definitely be voting, will you probably be voting, are you 50-50...
Definitely be voting: 78%
Probably be voting: 13%
What would you say is the number one problem facing Rhode Island that you would like the Governor to address?
Jobs and economy: 21%
State budget: 9%
Corruption/Public integrity: .8%
Don’t know: .9%
Recently, a proposal has been made to permit the issuance of $81 million in bonds by the State to build a new stadium for the Pawtucket Red Sox. If there was an election today on this issue, would you vote to approve or reject issuing $81 million in financing supported moral obligation bonds to build the stadium?
Net: Approve: 28%
Definitely approve: 15%
Probably approve: 14%
Net: Reject: 67%
Probably reject: 19%
Definitely reject: 48%
Don't know: 4%
The next question is about the total income of YOUR HOUSEHOLD for the PAST 12 MONTHS. Please include your income PLUS the income of all members living in your household (including cohabiting partners and armed forces members living at home).
$50,000 or less: 27%
More $50,000 but less than $75,000: 13%
More $75,000 but less than $100,000: 13%
More $100,000 but less than $150,000: 17%
$150,000 or more: 13%
Don't know/refused: 17%
What particular ethnic group or nationality - such as English, French, Italian, Irish, Latino, Jewish, African American, and so forth - do you consider yourself a part of or feel closest to?
Black or African American: 6%
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