Wednesday, February 2, 2011

State of Long Term Care Wraps Up

February 2, 2011

Recently AHCA/NCAL wrapped up its week-long series, The State of Long Term and Post-Acute Care. The series was created to generate awareness and buzz around current issues in long term and post-acute care. Beginning on January 18th AHCA/NCAL released daily press releasesfact sheets, and blog posts featuring highlights in quality, workforce, post-acute care, assisted living, economic indicators and reimbursement.

Major findings include:

·    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) confirms that nursing homes made measurable quality improvements in 16 of 26 quality indicators between 2000 and 2009, with positive trends continuing in 2010.

·    Recent data indicates that over 50 percent of Medicare beneficiaries in need of post-acute care following a hospital stay are discharged to a skilled nursing facility, making nursing homes the largest single provider of post-acute care in America.

·    Nursing homes are treating and discharging patients at a higher rate today than ever before with 39 percent of Medicare patients returning home within 100 days of admission.

·    By 2050, 6.6 million caregivers will be needed to care for the 27 million Americans who are projected to need long term care and services.

·    With nearly 40,000 residences across the nation, assisted living communities are a viable and welcome option for many older Americans.

·    On average, assisted living residents need help with two activities of daily living, and assisted living communities across the country strongly embrace the concept of person-centered care.

·    Medicare is often at risk for significant cuts, threatening the delivery of high quality care and services.

·    A typical Medicare beneficiary returns home or to the community after a relatively short, rehabilitative stay of 36 1/2 days in a skilled nursing facility.

·    Medicaid – the largest payer of long term care & services – covers 64 percent of nursing home patients and 13 percent of assisted living residents. A recent report from Eljay found Medicaid across America to be underfunded by $5.6 billion in 2010.

Read more in a guest commentary in Long Term Care Living from AHCA’s Greg Crist, Vice President of Public Affairs.

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