Wednesday, May 5, 2010

State pursuing ways to cut costs of in-home care

Missouri officials fear the state may be overpaying in-home care providers millions of dollars to help disabled residents bathe, cook, clean and perform other daily activities.

Legislation recently passed by the Senate -- and now pending in the House -- could impose a pair of cost-cutting curbs on the more than 300 businesses and nonprofit organizations that provide in-home services to about 50,000 low-income Missourians.

But some in-home care recipients and their advocates fear the changes will result in fewer services, making it more difficult for them to remain at home and more likely they will need to move into nursing homes.

At issue is the method by which Missouri determines whether residents' income makes them eligible for Medicaid, whether their physical conditions make them eligible for home care and, if so, how many hours of care they should receive.

Missouri has experimented during the past decade with several approaches, including conducting assessments through contracted nurses and state employees. Since July 2007, Missouri has allowed client assessments to be done by the same organizations that ultimately provide the home-care services.

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After note: Yes there is waste and alot of it in the system. That is a fact. There need to be better standards and better reviews,reporting and more to curb this waste. It is sad those abusing the system are the ones causing this to happen with these budget cut backs. I know of many where I live who do this. It is just not right.

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