Proposed Medicaid cuts could impact local families

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – The proposed state Senate budget could leave thousands of low-income seniors on Medicaid without a place to live.

The proposal calls for cutting funding to those who depend on Medicaid to pay for care in assisted living.

“I just don’t understand why they are choosing the elderly to pick on,” said Debbie Wagner who’s 84-year old mother entered assisted living when she could no longer care for herself. “They are being a bully with the Medicaid program.”

Currently assisted living seniors on Medicaid are eligible for financial assistance if theirĀ income is less than $1,182 a month or $1,515 for seniors needing special care like Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Under the proposed changes seniors in both cases will need to make less than $973.00 a month to qualify.

“Over 5,000 residents that are in adult care homes right now in our state could potentially be affected by this change and that includes 1600 diagnosed with Alzheimer and dementia.,” said Mary Genia Day, executive director of Kerner Ridge Assisted Living in Kernersville.

Day says the proposed cuts also call for eliminate funds that pay for things like medication, doctors visits and hospitalizations.

“They won’t have a home and ultimately this is there home this is their safe haven.” Rep. Donny Lambeth, R-Forsyth County, a House budget writer who sits on the Health and Human Services Committee, said Tuesday that now is not the time to be looking at cuts, especially Medicaid.

Lambeth believes the House budget will hold the line and hopes they can get the Senate to agree

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