The Louisiana State Health Department this week is warning tens of thousands of elderly Louisianans that they may lose their health care coverage. The move is a result of the much talked about state budget crisis. Your legislature must do its job and find $700 million.
They can raise revenue, keep all or part of the one cent sales tax, or plan spending cuts to keep our state solvent.
Last month, your House of Representatives decided the best approach was cutting $538 million dollars from healthcare spending including 4 Medicaid programs for the disabled and elderly.
The house budget plan eliminated the Medicaid Long Term Care Special Income Level Program which assisted folks with incomes of more than $750 a month and less than $2,250 a month. 80% of nursing facility residents in our state fall under this program.
The new plan caps income eligibility at $750 a month or less.
Let that sink in for a minute.
$751 dollars a month in income and you no longer qualify to receive help to pay for the roof over your head, the food on your table, and constant medical attention you need. Just so you know, the monthly cost for this care in Louisiana will run you about $5000. $751 dollars simply won’t get you very far.
Some lawmakers have called this a scare tactic, but the Edwards administration insists it is the reality of the budget bill as proposed. Edwards has vowed to veto the bill in its current form. However, no one has found a compromise plan. Either way it stinks.
I mentioned earlier that the legislature was simply doing its job trying to find cuts. Well, offering up this kind of solution is a lousy job. We should all expect better. We surely deserve better from our elected representatives than a plan that targets the poor, the infirmed, and the elderly.