Dear Governor Newsome :
I am on the board of the Health Project Center in Santa Cruz, County that operates the MULTI-PURPOSE SENIOR SERVICES PROGRAM (MSSP program ). and CAREGIVER RESOURCES PROGRAM (CRC) in both Monterey and Santa Cruz Counties.
KEEP THESE NURSING HOMES CERTIFIED SENIORS IN THE CHEAPER COMMUNITY
I am writing to support these programs and implore the governor not to cut their funding. These senior programs were created to keep people out of expensive nursing homes in the 1970s and keep them in the cheaper and nurturing community. By cutting MSSP and CRC the state will only accrue more debt by spending more money to fund now COVID -19 disease-ridden nursing homes. These nursing home certified beneficiaries who are the frailest and poorest of our elderly population. They are kept in the community by MSSP where they receive food services, socialization, and therapy. Their family caregivers receive respite.
Giving these caregivers respite can be the difference between caregiver burnout due to unpaid relentless 24-hour care of a loved one. Burnout ends in placement in nursing homes. But with COVID -19 still rampaging many cannot even get in.
CAREGIVER RESOURCE CENTER KEEPS FRAIL SENIORS IN FREE FAMILY CARE VS NURSING HOME PLACEMENT $80,000 a year
Respite to caregivers to stop inappropriate placement in nursing homes is one of the main functions of the Caregiver Resources Centers in California, which needs its funding kept intact by the governor. The Center provides support to families caring for loved ones with cognitive impairments such as Alzheimer’s Disease, making referrals to caregiver counseling, support groups, local caregiver service, and giving small respite grants. Without the caregiver falling apart, which the Caregiver Resource Center stops, once again, the older nursing home certified client will just end up being forced to trying to get into a nursing home at $80,000 a year, when the family caregiver was FREE.
IF these programs are demolished by the governor and MSSP and CRC are axed out in a blood-spattered cut and these frail seniors will be dumped into California nursing homes where the state will spend needless money it does not have.
STATE WILL PAY $80,000 A YEAR PER PERSON FOR NURSING HOME PLACEMENT VS. $5000 FOR MSSP
These programs save the state money. Each of the MSSP clients is disabled enough to be eligible for nursing homes and poor enough to be eligible for MediCal. So instead of the
state paying $80,000 or $90,000 per person per year in a nursing home, the State pays only on average a little over $5,000 for the person to be in MSSP and nothing for the family caregiver. .This makes the cuts both fiscally wrong and mystifying.
MSSP CUTS MAKE RECIPIENTS GO TO NURSING HOMES WITH 0 TESTING, JUNK PPE THAT LOOKS LIKE GARBAGE BAGS WITH HOLES
Seniors have borne the greatest share of death already from COVID-19, as over 50% of the dead in the US are now elders from coronavirus who lived in a nursing home rife with the virus. These MSSP participants, without the support of MSSP, will have to turn to nursing homes. According to the House Select Committee on Nursing Homes a few days ago, these facilities do not have enough testing and personal protective equipment to stop the virus from spreading. They do not even have PPE and at CMS direction, FEMA has been sending out junk for PPE that looks like garbage bags with holes. This is what you would be sentencing these frail elders to with the scrawl of the governor’s seal.
CRC CUTS SEND Frail ELDERS FROM FREE FAMILY CARE TO $80,000 YR NURSING HOMES
You are sending these seniors from the loving care of their family to nursing homes with few beds, COVID-19 raging from one bed to the next bed, beds not 6 feet apart, and no
testing or PPE. All this while the state pays $80,000 or $90,000 per person per year in a nursing home when the State pays only on average a little over $5,000 for the person to be in MSSP.
CUTS TRAVESTY IN JUDGEMENT AND MORAL FISCAL BANKRUPT CHOICE
I am a graduate of Berkeley with a master’s in SW in aging planning and community development and this is just planning for more state debt and more seniors dying in expensive, CMS FEMA and Federally caused, death traps called nursing homes.
Cathy Cress MSW
Santa Cruz, Ca 95062