Op-Ed: Nursing home residents clipped again by Malloy’s budget proposal

Last Wednesday,  Gov. Dannel Malloy released his budget proposal for the biennium and again he is targeting Connecticut’s nursing home residents who rely on Medicaid and a personal needs allowance (PNA) to provide for the extras they need to maintain their quality of life.

In Malloy’s 2011 budget the PNA was cut from $69 to $60 a month and this budget proposes to reduce it further to only $50 a month.

Op-ed submit bugWhen a monthly haircut can be $10 to $20, a basic cell phone can cost $30, an occasional pizza order $15, and body wash, shampoo, toothpaste between $3 and $5; how are we expected to maintain a decent quality of life with only $50 a month?

This proposed reduction would take the PNA back to a level not seen since 1998, adjusted for inflation the $50 in 1998 would need to be $73 in 2015.

As the only resident group in Connecticut that every year is asked to turn over its annual Social Security increases as cost of the care, the state has already saved over $19 million dollars in Medicaid spending.  Do we really need to be asked to sacrifice again?

We urge the legislature to pass a budget without a reduction to the PNA for residents of Connecticut’s nursing homes.

Brian Capshaw is the resident council president of the Greensprings Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center in East Hartford. 

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