Affordable Care Act provides help for nursing homes, brief says

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The Affordable Care Act benefits nursing homes and other residential care facilities, according to an amicus curiae brief filed in the Supreme Court by six aging groups.

The healthcare reform law is expected to be argued before the high court next month. The groups wrote in support of the ACA, saying multiple provisions are of "vital importance to the health and well-being of people 65 and older" and not contingent on the legality of the minimum coverage provision, or individual mandate. The groups authoring the friend of the court brief are the AARP, Center for Medicare Advocacy, Inc., Medicare Rights Center, National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare, National Council on Aging, and National Senior Citizens Law Center.

Challenges to the ACA, such as National Federation of Independent Business et al v Kathleen Sebelius and the State of Florida et al v Department of Health and Human Services argue that the entire law should be scrapped if the minimum coverage provision is invalidated.

The groups disagree, saying that even if that portion is deemed unconstitutional, the ACA should not be tossed out in its entirety. According to the brief, the ACA's provisions include decreasing unnecessary institutionalization of Medicaid beneficiaries; shrinking the so-called prescription drug “donut hole;” improved coordination for dual eligibles; and improving quality and safety in nursing homes.

Click here to read the brief.

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