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New York nursing homes face crisis amid Medicaid funding debate

The ongoing state budget dispute in Albany over fair Medicaid funding could soon affect vulnerable residents in nursing homes across New York. As the budget deadline looms, there’s a significant push to expand Medicaid spending to avert a looming crisis in long-term care facilities. The state Senate and Assembly are advocating for a 10% increase in Medicaid funding, a proposal that contrasts with the governor’s plan to identify savings elsewhere.

This budgetary impasse has raised concerns about the potential impact of cuts on smaller, particularly Upstate, nursing homes where Medicaid reimbursement rates fall short of covering the cost of care. Experts warn that these facilities could face undue hardship, highlighting a geographic disparity in funding that jeopardizes the quality and availability of care for the elderly and disabled.

Amid calls from healthcare workers for increased Medicaid funding, Elemental Management Group President Joseph Murabito suggests a shift to a flat-rate increase per patient, arguing it would offer a more equitable solution. This model proposes an across-the-board boost of approximately $27 per patient, aiming to provide critical support to the state’s most financially challenged nursing homes while benefiting all facilities. The proposal seeks to ensure that all New York nursing homes can continue to offer essential care without compromising on quality.