Tag: Health care
Minnesota wants new care model for elderly and disabled
Wednesday, September 7th, 2011
Graphic courtesy of Twin Cities Daily Planet
Census data reveals over a quarter of the nation's population is now between the ages of 45 and 64. Because of the aging population, jobs for home health aides are expected to grow by 50 percent over the next decade. As Cynthia Boyd reports, Minnesota's Medical Assistance program wants permission to spend more on home care.
The department will be asking the federal government for changes — a "global waiver" — which, if approved, would change how the state can spend federal human-services funds. The redesigned MA approach, supported by the Legislature as well, takes a more flexible approach.
The waiver request would ensure nursing-home care for persons with the "greatest needs,'' while more easily providing home or community-based services to persons with "lower care needs,'' according to DHS.
Also according to the department, in fiscal year 2009, 557,000 Minnesotans received Medical Assistance, the state's Medicaid program for low-income seniors, children and parents and people with disabilities.
Assistant Human Services Commissioner Loren Colman says a trend toward home and community-based care supports their request.
"We've been a leader in developing these services," he says, adding that in 1995 only 30 percent of the disabled under age 65 and receiving publicly funded care lived in the community. Now 94 percent of that group do. "Now what we want to do is make community-based care the standard," depending on an individual's choice as well as safety concerns, Colman says.