Study: Medicaid vastly under funding long-term care

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Accounting firm BDO Seidman found states inadequately fund nursing home care by at least $4.1 billion annually. The firm analyzed the nation's Medicaid program at the behest of the American Health Care Association. The report says under funding will "continue to increase every year because rate increases have not kept pace with nursing home cost inflation."

Funding is calculated as the differential between the allowable costs of care, per patient per day, and government reimbursements.

The report contends that residents of nursing facilities in New Hampshire ($28.18 per patient daily), New Jersey ($26.55), Utah ($20.99), Missouri ($18.60), and Massachusetts ($18.41) are the top five states in terms of under funding. The study is based on data from 37 states and represents almost 88% of the Medicaid patient days in the country.

The firm analyzed the shortfall between Medicaid reimbursement and allowable Medicaid costs, derived from the 2001 rate and cost data. It found the average shortfall in Medicaid reimbursement was $11.55 per Medicaid patient day, 18% higher than last year.

To access the full study visit: www.ahca.org/brief/seidmanstudy0312.pdf.