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Statement From the American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living in Anticipation of President Obama's State of the Union Address

Wednesday, January 27, 2010 Press Release J E 4
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The following statement is attributed to Bruce Yarwood, President and CEO of AHCA/NCAL

WASHINGTON, Jan. 26 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Health Care Association and National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) believe that a robust jobs proposal and strengthening the ability of our nation's long term care sector to provide quality care to a growing, diverse patient and resident base, must be twin cornerstones of the 2010 legislative agenda that will be advanced by President Obama and Congress.

America's long term care sector is ready, willing and able to be a key partner in creating good-paying jobs, and spurring the local economic activity our nation needs to rebound from a devastating recession. The long term care sector employs more individuals than the world's largest employer -- Wal-Mart -- is a significant contributor to the economic health of communities nationwide, and continues to supply new, stable health care jobs. Its stability is vital to stimulate economic growth, especially as the demand for long term care services continues to grow. The essential element to maintain our vital economic role is to ensure federal Medicare funding remains stable and adequate in the face of disastrous state budgetary crises in state capitals across America.

While stable Medicare funding for quality nursing home care is already essential when taken in isolation, it becomes especially vital as seniors in many states have already endured, or will soon face, substantial Medicaid funding cuts as a result of state legislative actions. As Medicare and Medicaid funding are inextricably linked, successfully protecting seniors' care needs, preserving and growing our caregiver jobs base, and boosting local economies are directly contingent upon adequate, stable and reliable Medicare funding this year, and in the years ahead.

SOURCE American Health Care Association
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