MassHealth is a safety net for many of our residents. The state agency oversees Medicaid, the federal program that provides health coverage for low-income individuals. That includes nursing homes, assisting individuals with the monthly cost of their care that they would not have otherwise been able to afford.
However, there has been an alarming trend in MassHealth funding lately. Perhaps you’ve heard that the rates paid to nursing homes are based on 2007 costs. That means despite rising costs, all nursing homes caring for MassHealth residents still receive payments calculated on costs that they’ve incurred over 12 years ago. Copley has the same cost increases in labor, utilities, and food that you have in your own home – just on a much larger scale.
Tara Gregorio, the president of the Massachusetts Senior Care Association, and Naomi Prendergast, president and CEO of D’Youville Life and Wellness Community in Lowell have “sounded the alarm” about rates being too low. “This is a severely underfunded system,” Gregorio told CommonWealth Magazine’s The Codcast. They are calling for a restructuring of the program and funding based on more current costs. You can listen to the whole podcast and read an article based on their conversation here.
Copley at Stoughton fully supports this initiative. We see the tremendous impact MassHealth has for our residents and their families. But many nursing homes in Massachusetts are on the verge of bankruptcy, which will have an impact on many more residents and the industry as a whole.
Thankfully, that’s not the case for Copley at Stoughton. I credit our staff 100% for the great job they do ensuring our residents receive the care they need. In a previous blog post, I talked about how our staff routinely goes above and beyond budgets to provide outstanding care. This is part of the reason why we are consistently ranked one of the “Best Nursing Homes in the United States.”
We believe in a strong skilled nursing home industry. We are optimistic that MassHealth will adjust their payment structure soon, thanks to the hard work of people like Tara Gregorio and Naomi Prendergast. But no matter what the outcome, Copley will remain a strong community partner providing care that goes above and beyond.
You can find out more about applying for MassHealth for your skilled nursing care home needs HERE.