A football feast

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Mmm … yum. A long-term care story has got my mouth watering.

As the time ticks down to the National Football League conference finals this weekend, Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell (D) has made a pledge. If both of his football teams make it to the Super Bowl, he plans to donate sandwiches to senior centers in the victor city.

What a tasteful idea! It is stories like these that actually make me tune into the big game. (That and the commercials.)

This was the week of culinary issues in long-term care apparently. But another story related to food is not so savory. A brand of peanut butter recently was recalled nationally because it contained salmonella. An open container in a senior living facility in Minnesota tested positive for it. Rather than invigorate my taste buds, this makes my stomach turn.

Let’s just hope they don’t serve peanut butter in the event of the Super Bowl sandwich giveaway …

Eating up Medicaid dollars

On another less appetizing note, it seems that the economy is driving up Medicaid spending. Four months into fiscal year 2009, more than half of Medicaid directors report that program enrollment and spending trends are above the levels projected at the beginning of the state fiscal year. What’s causing it? The economic downturn, according to the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured.

It is clear that the federal stimulus package with needed Medicaid funds cannot be passed soon enough. While states are being forced to tighten their belts on Medicaid, it’s nearly impossible with growing needs. It’s time to fork over the funding, Congress.

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Daily Editors' Notes

McKnight's Daily Editors' Notes features commentary on the latest in long-term care news and issues. Entries are written by Editorial Director John O'Connor, Editor James M. Berklan, Senior Editor Elizabeth Newman and Staff Writer Marty Stempniak.