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National, State Front Line Caregivers Warn About $64 Million Cut to Medicare Funding for Care of Michigan Seniors
Date:3/27/2008

Proposed Bush FY 2009 Budget Slashes Nursing Home Funding for Care of Michigan's Most Vulnerable Seniors; Federal Medicare Cuts Place Greater Pressure on State Medicaid Program as Economy Slows

LANSING, Mich., March 27 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- National and state front line caregivers voiced opposition today to $64 million cuts to Medicare-financed nursing home care for Michigan seniors contained in the Bush Administration's FY 2009 budget, and warned that these proposed cuts, combined with growing pressure on the state budget caused by the economic downturn, will severely compromise caregivers' ability to meet the growing complex care needs of Michigan's oldest, most vulnerable seniors.

"From the standpoint of Michigan's oldest, most vulnerable seniors and the direct care workers who serve them, the Bush Administration's Medicare cuts are dangerous to every aspect of front line care giving," stated Lisa Cantrell, a co-founder of the National Association of Health Care Assistants (NAHCA), and a national spokesperson for the Coalition to Protect Senior Care, a coalition of over a dozen front line caregiver groups based in Joplin, MO. "As we successfully opposed efforts in 2007 to cut Medicare funding for long term care, we will fight any attempt by the Bush Administration to slash the vital resources necessary to ensuring Michigan seniors continue to receive the quality care and services they absolutely require."

The Bush Administration's FY 2009 budget -- which includes both legislative and regulatory components -- creates a direct and immediate threat to the long term care needs of Michigan's oldest, most vulnerable constituents -- as well as to the jobs of the key facility nursing staff that make a difference in care quality and patient outcomes. The President's proposal includes elimination of a regularly-scheduled inflation adjustment for skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) -- a measure that requires Congressional action -- and a
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SOURCE Coalition to Protect Senior Care
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