It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like Fun*Run Time

It's ALREADY that time of year again: The ADAPT Fun*Run for Disability Rights is April 22nd 2012. Maryland's fundraising goal is $8,000 this year. Yes, that's right, $8,000

Donate $1! Donate $10! Donate $100! Donate $1,000! JUST DONATE so we can FREE OUR PEOPLE! I thank you very much for your support!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

I'm Disappointed in You Sen Cardin

On Monday I went with 2 other Maryland ADAPTers to a local Senior Center because Sen Cardin, one of Maryland's 2 federal senators, was doing a town hall on health reform. I waited to write about this because I thought, and was told by a member of the County Executive's staff, that full footage of the hr would be available here. Apparently not. Now this post will be briefer then originally intended because it's been so long I can't remember exactly what everyone said.

Basically, Sen Cardin spent most of his time talking about the budget and the fact that the government is about to shut down (see yesterday's post, they're still trying to pass this year's budget and if it doesn't pass soon the whole government will shut down) and how disastrous this will be to seniors. But he did talk some about the health reform. Not at all about long term care, of course, so when my turn to ask a question finally came I stood up in an ADAPT shirt and said
"Can you please talk about efforts to reduce the Medicaid institutional bias so that seniors and people with disabilities, such as myself, can remain in their own homes."
I'm disappointed in you Sen Cardin. I phrased my question in such a way as to make him, and Maryland, look good. I didn't attack him for not supporting the Community Choice Act, but left it open for him to talk about programs such as Money Follows the Person (MFP) and the Community First Choice Option (CFCO, formerly the CLASS Act).

What he basically said was that Medicaid is operated by the states and states can choose to operate home based programs if they want to. What he should have done was talk about the recent expansion of MFP to include 13 more states (now I think we're at 42, correct me if I'm wrong) and the fact that Maryland is an original MFP state. He could have explained what the CFCO is. Maryland has money in next year's budget to explore whether we want to be a CFCO state. Instead he said this isn't a federal issue.

The federal government mandates that they won't help states cover their Medicaid costs unless they cover institutional care. Community services are optional. Community services have been cut every year while in Maryland, nursing facility rates have gone up about 6.6%. It's similar in every state. Making a bigger federal push for home & community based services would change that situation.

This IS a federal issue Sen Cardin.


Anonymous said...

why don't you send him this in an email?

Cheryl said...

Maybe I should...

Anonymous said...

Well, this was in error, "Community First Choice Option (CFCO, formerly the CLASS Act" CFCO is an excrpt of the Community Choice Act, your side bar. The CLASS act was also included in the Affordable Care Act = health care reform. It is for folks with some money to put away. CCA is for those who have nothing now or later. CFCO will help as will the other long term services and supports reform opportunities in ACA. Enough alphbet soup? Good post, good point

Cheryl said...

I was totally confused about that. Thank you G. I think that's who this is...

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