MECHANICSBURG, Pa. (July 21, 2021) - LeadingAge PA, an association representing more than 380 providers of services for seniors, today issued the following statement from President and CEO Adam Marles on newly proposed nursing home regulations by the Wolf administration:

"Today's announcement by the Wolf administration is disappointing, but hardly surprising given its record on Medicaid funding. In its own proposal, the Wolf administration discloses it's not even sure of the implications but acknowledges nursing home providers will bear much of the cost at a time when everyone understands they can least afford to do so. Our members support best staffing practices and provide high-quality senior care, but a lack of state funding continues to stretch our resources to the very limit. This administration has never provided a Medicaid funding increase or supported any funding initiatives by the General Assembly. This latest unfunded mandate for staffing couldn't come at a worse time as long-term care facilities are still fighting a pandemic while suffering the worst staffing crisis in generations.

"Demographics point to the workforce crisis potentially lasting a decade or more. Had the Wolf administration funded Medicaid adequately through the years, those dollars would've gone to staff to continue providing quality care to our residents. These regulations also ignore that the pandemic is far from over for long-term care facilities, which remain in a daily battle with a virus that targets our oldest citizens. Costs for personal protective equipment (PPE), ongoing testing and other pandemic-related costs continue. Instead, these regulations will lead to more quality care providers taking Medicaid beds offline, selling to poor-quality, out-of-state companies, or closing all together. This year alone, several facilities have closed or have been sold, including: the Charles Morris Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Pittsburgh; St. Mary's East in Erie; Westminster Village in Allentown; Twining Village in Berks County; and the Madlyn and Leonard Abramson Center for Jewish Life, Abramson Senior Care campus, in Montgomery County.

"There was an opportunity to work together to improve Pennsylvania's long-term care system for generations. Instead, long-term care providers, which continue to be on the front lines of the pandemic, haven't had input into these regulations since 2019. For some reason, Gov. Wolf has never been interested.

"We're hopeful to have the opportunity to provide meaningful input during the regulatory review process. LeadingAge PA members have a wealth of experience and knowledge that would be helpful to finding real solutions."

[Note: Attached is LeadingAge PA's 2018 comments on proposed regulatory changes.]

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About LeadingAge PA:

LeadingAge PA is a trade association representing more than 380 quality senior housing, health care, and community services across the commonwealth. These providers serve more than 75,000 older Pennsylvanians and employ over 50,000 dedicated caregivers on a daily basis. Services our members offer include Life Plan Communities/Continuing Care Retirement Communities, skilled nursing communities, assisted living residences, personal care homes, and affordable senior housing. LeadingAge PA advocates on behalf of our members at the state and local levels to influence positive change and affect a healthy vision for the delivery of quality, affordable, and ethical care for Pennsylvania's seniors. For more information about LeadingAge PA and our envisioned future of senior services, visit www.leadingagepa.org

Media Contact:

La Torre Communications for LeadingAge PA
David La Torre
david@latorrecommunications.com