Residents and staff members advocate for older adults’ health care by contacting legislators

Hundreds of letters were sent to legislators to advocate for Ohio's older adults.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

in News

Hundreds of letters, email and phone calls to legislators this week asked them to help #SaveMedicaid. Many residents and staff members have contacted U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown and Senator Rob Portman as well as US Representatives to preserve Medicaid. For vulnerable, frail adults, Medicaid is an important part of Ohio’s safety net that provides crucial services to thousands of Ohio’s older adults annually. Medicaid enables vulnerable Ohioans to access quality healthcare, including home- and community-based care and long-term care, when their means are exhausted or insufficient to pay for care.

You can easily add your voice to #SaveMedicaid – by phone, email or letter writing – with resources available on the LeadingAge web site. Click here to participate.

The replacement plan includes cuts that would hit older, sicker Americans harder than other groups. Additionally, individuals over 50 who are not yet eligible for Medicare will see their premiums skyrocket under the new plan, as the premium tax credits they receive are significantly reduced.

According to LeadingAge Ohio, A recent study suggests that this funding structure would lead to large-scale shortfalls in every state. As stated on the web site:

The Medicaid program a central feature of Ohio’s system of safety nets. The bill proposed before the Senate would slash federal funding by over $800 billion, forcing states to cut important services for older adults, such as long-term services and supports. Medicaid is the primary payer for 59% of nursing facilities in Ohio, and approximately 196,000 Ohioans received long-term services and supports through Medicaid.

Currently, seniors make up only 14.2% of Ohio’s Medicaid beneficiaries, but by 2025, the number of Ohioans over age 65 is expected to grow by 24.9%. The number of Ohioans over 85, a population that relies heavily on long-term services and supports, is expected to grow by 7.1% over this same period of time. If this legislation takes effect, it means that the pressure put on Medicaid will be most severe during this aging boom, as the annual adjustment fails to keep pace with rising healthcare costs.”

Residents signed letters and made phone calls to legislators to make sure their voices were heard about changes to health care and Medicaid.

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