As the Senate returns to Washington this week, lawmakers must focus on ensuring that long-term care facilities have the resources needed to keep residents and staff members safe, according to a statement released Tuesday by the American Health Care Association / National Center for Assisted Living.
As pandemic-relief discussions continue, AHCA/NCAL is calling for a two-pronged approach to testing that provides financial support for increased and prioritized testing for providers and residents. The organization has also requested an additional $100 billion to the Provider Relief Fund with a substantial portion dedicated to long-term care, as well as vaccine priority for residents and staff.
Nursing homes and assisted living communities continue to experience major COVID-related financial hardships, making the need for additional funding urgent. Personal protective equipment, testing and staffing have caused expenditures to skyrocket. As a result, more than half of nursing homes and assisted living communities are operating at a loss. Further, 72% of nursing homes and 64% of assisted living communities state they will not be able to remain open for another year without relief.
“With the resources we’ve received thus far, we’ve been able to save thousands of lives,” AHCA/NCAL President and CEO Mark Parkinson said. “We can save even more if we can make our seniors and frontline caregivers a priority.”