David Harlow’s Health Care Law Blog picks up the thread with a nice summary of the state of the art. I found the following to be especially interesting.
The latest entrant in this field of alternatives to traditional nursing facilities is the Going Home program in Massachusetts, highlighted in today’s Boston Globe story about a four-resident home in West Peabody operated by North Shore Elder Services, which plans to add additional sites. The home provides a residence, a live-in aide, meals, and other services as needed. Per the Globe, services cost another $3,600 to $4,000 per person a month at West Peabody, covered through the Medicaid and Medicare programs, because the residents have medical and physical conditions that would otherwise qualify them for government-paid nursing home care. The total cost per day is less than the $187 average state payment for nursing home care, but more than the state pays for the least-ill nursing home residents.
The story continues:
Because the houses are not subject to state regulation like nursing homes, some question whether residents would be adequately protected. There have been occasional abuses in state-funded homes for the mentally ill.
Organizers say there are multiple checks and balances in the way the houses are run. One of the regular duties of the elder service agencies is to investigate abuse and neglect for the state. The agencies’ staff monitors the care provided in the houses. And other professionals, obligated to report abuse, are regular visitors.
The market for these services is likely robust and it will be interesting to follow the growth of this initiative in Massachusetts and elsewhere.
This photo is titled “Going Home” and comes from a collection of images from Randy Putnam’s tour of duty with the 174th AHC, circa 1967 -1968. Take a look. If you like what you see, drop a line to JimMcD (webmaster)