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National, New York, New Jersey Long Term Care Leaders Hold News Teleconference Today to Urge Congress to Stop the Massive Medicare Cuts to Region's Oldest, Most Vulnerable Nursing Home Residents

Thursday, August 30, 2007 General News J E 4
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New York Seniors Take Second Highest Medicare Hit on National Basis ($184 m)

New Jersey Seniors Take 8th Highest Medicare Hit on National Basis ($102 m)**To participate in the teleconference, please dial (800) 762-6568 and ask for the Long Term Medicare Cuts to NY Seniors ** WHAT: With the New York and New Jersey Congressional Delegations home over the August recess and preparing to return to Washington after Labor Day, national, New York and New Jersey long term care leaders are stepping up pressure in their effort to detail massive Medicare cuts to New York and New Jersey's oldest, most vulnerable nursing home residents -- a cut representing the second and eighth highest funding reductions respectively, on a national basis. Prior to congressional adjournment, in a misguided effort to pay for the expansion of the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Children's Health and Medicare Protection Act of 2007 (CHAMP Act). Medicare funding reductions included in the CHAMP Act disproportionately target long term care as skilled nursing facilities comprise only 7% of the nation's Medicare Parts A & B spending, yet they are singled out to shoulder the biggest cuts -- 25 percent -- of all Medicare Part A or B reimbursed providers. The U.S. Senate passed a similar bill to help finance CHIP expansion, but it wisely avoided cuttings seniors' Medicare funding to accomplish this worthy policy objective. The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) finds the House bill will cut Medicare Part A benefits by a total of $2.7 billion over five years. As the House and Senate bills will soon go to Conference in order to negotiate a final bill, national and state long term care advocates are urging New York and New Jersey lawmakers to stand up for their oldest, most vulnerable constituents by calling on the House leadership to cancel the Medicare cuts as a means of financing CHIP. WHO: Susan Feeney, Vice President of Public Affairs for the American Health Care Association -- the nation's largest organization of long term care providers -- will provide the Capitol Hill perspective and discuss in a national context how the Medicare cuts would severely damage the nation's long term care infrastructure just as baby boomers begin entering retirement in ever larger numbers. Paul Langevin, President of the Health Care Association of New Jersey (HCANJ), will speak to the state impact of slashing $102 million in Medicare funding. Richard Herrick, President of the New York State Health Facilities Association (NYSHFA), will speak to the state impact of slashing $184 million in Medicare funding. Len Russ, Facility Administrator of the Bayberry Nursing Home in New Rochelle, New York will discuss the potential impact the proposed Medicare cuts could have on staffing issues and the quality of care currently provided to skilled nursing residents. WHEN: August 29, 2007 - 11:00 AM EDT **To participate in the teleconference, please dial (800) 762-6568 and ask for the Long Term Medicare Cuts to NY Seniors ** To RSVP, please contact Rebecca Reid at 1-410-212-3843 or reidconsulting@comcast.net.

SOURCE American Health Care Association
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