Thousands of Texans who require long term care and services rely on Medicaid to pay for their care each day. The largest payor of long term care and services, Medicaid represents a blend of both federal and state dollars paid at a rate set by the State of Texas — rates that fail to cover the actual cost of providing this type of care.
The Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) says Medicaid spending in 2014-2015 will require $925 million just to meet the cost of caring for the nearly 60,000 Medicaid-dependent elderly and disabled Texans living in nursing homes.
This means Texas nursing homes and their residents will shoulder a nearly $1 billion burden in state government underfunding unless the Texas legislature adds that amount in the state budget for the next two years.
The Chronic Underfunding of Skilled Nursing Care in Texas
Medicaid-funded nursing home care was already cut $58 million in the last budget cycle, federal Medicare funding was cut $234 million this year, and still more deep Medicare cuts loom on the horizon for Texas' most vulnerable seniors.
With the 83rd Legislative Session now underway, we urge lawmakers to adequately adjust for the first time since 1999 the funding levels state government itself says are required to provide quality nursing home care to our seniors.