LeadingAge PA, the voice of not-for-profit senior services in Pennsylvania, today called on Gov. Tom Wolf and the General Assembly to fairly fund senior care services in the commonwealth. For several years, the commonwealth has ignored mandated Medicaid funding requirements and given care providers flat or reduced funding in state budgets.

"The time is now to make things right for Pennsylvania seniors and our most frail elderly," said LeadingAge PA President and CEO Adam Marles. "Pennsylvania must do better. As the commonwealth places increasing regulatory burdens on care providers, even those with tremendous records of care, funding simply hasn't kept up to meet these demands and Pennsylvania's aging population. This has compounded a staffing crisis as facilities continue to lose qualified professionals who develop deep bonds with their residents and patients."

Marles said the commonwealth should fund a minimum of a 2.6-percent increase for skilled nursing services. This amount matches the increases in costs to actually provide care to our older adults, as calculated by the federal government. Additionally, the budget should continue to include funding for the Medical Assistance Day One Incentive Payment that provides additional funding for nursing facilities that take more Medicaid residents.

"This is a common-sense request that addresses years of chronic underfunding that threatens the quality of care seniors receive from our not-for-profit members," he said. "We must do better."