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Massachusetts nursing homes provide a core state service to frail elders and disabled individuals who can no longer be cared for safely at home.

Join thousands of nursing home residents, their family members and staff in protecting quality nursing home care by urging elected officials to make funding for quality nursing home care a priority in the state budget. We need your voice to protect resident care and support funding for dedicated caregivers.

TAKE ACTION!

Make your voice heard! Sign up to become an advocate and email your legislators TODAY to urge them to invest in quality nursing home care in the FY 2020 budget.

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THE ISSUE

Protect quality resident care and invest in staff by closing the Medicaid funding gap

About 30,000, or two-thirds, of nursing home residents have their care paid for by the state Medicaid program, which reimburses $38 per day below the cost of care – a gap that makes Massachusetts among the worst in the nation for underfunding quality nursing home care. This has led to a staggering $362 million funding gap statewide, or $900,000 for each facility.

Addressing the nursing home crisis including closing the Medicaid funding gap is the most significant way to stabilize the workforce, provide a living wage for staff and ensure residents receive quality care.

GET THE FACTS

Massachusetts nursing facilities are facing an unprecedented financial and workforce crisis due to state underfunding, changes in federal Medicare payments and a full employment economy. This crisis impacts all nursing facilities – not-for-profit, for profit, family owned – and requires the urgent attention of lawmakers in order to prevent further erosion and to protect access to quality resident care.


Did You Know?

  • Massachusetts nursing homes provide a core state service to frail elders and disabled individuals who can no longer be cared for safely at home.
  • A typical long term care resident is female, aged 86, and likely to have dementia or be cognitively impaired. She lived alone prior to entering a nursing home and is totally dependent on the assistance of CNAs and nurses for her care and performing activities of daily living. She relies on MassHealth, the state’s Medicaid program, to pay for her care.
  • About 30,000, or two-thirds, of nursing home residents have their care paid for by the state Medicaid program, which reimburses $38 per day below the cost of care – a gap that makes Massachusetts among the worst in the nation for underfunding quality nursing home care. This has led to a $362 million funding gap statewide, or a $900,000 loss for each nursing facility annually.
  • Since three-quarters of a nursing home’s budget is used to fund employee wages and benefits, a nursing home’s ability to increase wages and benefits is largely dependent upon state funding.
  • Medicaid underfunding has a significant impact on a facility’s ability to compete for staff and provide quality resident care. Approximately 5,000 direct care staff positions (14%) are vacant across Massachusetts. 21% of nursing homes either have or are considering closing admissions due to inability to compete for staff.
  • In the past year, 20 Massachusetts nursing homes have closed. The nursing facility sector is operating on -1.6% margins with over half of providers operating in the red.
  • Addressing the nursing home crisis including closing the Medicaid funding gap is the most significant way to stabilize the workforce, provide a living wage for staff and ensure residents receive quality care.

LEGISLATIVE CALENDAR

  • January 23, 2019

    Governor Baker State Fiscal Year 2020 Budget Recommendation Released

  • January 21-31, 2019

    Efforts to Gain Legislative Co-Sponsor for Nursing Home Stabilization Bill

  • January-April 2019

    Legislative Meetings at State House and In District

  • Mid-April 2019

    House Ways & Means Fiscal Year 2020 Budget Recommendation Released and Debated by the Full House of Representatives

  • May 21, 2019

    STATE HOUSE ADVOCACY DAY

  • Mid-May 2019

    Senate Ways & Means Fiscal Year 2020 Budget Recommendation Released and Debated by the Full Senate

  • June 2019

    Fiscal Year 2020 Conference Committee Deliberations

  • July 1, 2019

    Start of State Fiscal Year 2020

About MSCA 

The Massachusetts Senior Care Association represents a diverse set of organizations that deliver a broad spectrum of services to meet the needs of older adults and people with disabilities.  Its members include more than 400 nursing and rehabilitation facilities, assisted living residences, residential care facilities and continuing care retirement communities.  Forming a crucial link in the continuum of care, Mass Senior Care facilities provide housing, health care and support services to more than 150,000 people a year; employ more than 77,000 staff members; and contribute more than $4 billion annually to the Massachusetts economy.