I believe Sarah Palin was a fortune teller in another life. She predicted the death panels, but she just didn’t realize it would come from her own party. Where is Sarah now? Where are the clarion death panel calls? Is she quiet because it is her party that is creating them through defunding of programs?
With budgets being discussed and debated in the state and federal levels, our elderly, particularly our low income elderly, are under attack by the very Republicans they voted in. The elderly voted for these conservatives based on the lies of Obamacare, you know,death panels.
Now the chickens are coming home to roost. The Republicans are taking a meat ax to Medicaid. Let’s look into Medicaid and how this program helps our seniors. Many people are under the assumption that Medicaid is for low income people who are not yet old enough to benefit from Medicare, this is a common misconception. Medicaid is the program that covers long term care of our senior citizens, not Medicare. Medicare covers only a few months of nursing home care after emergencies.
The Republican budget is coming out on Tuesday, April 5th, 2011. The architect of this budget is Representative Paul Ryan (R-WI). Within this GOP budget proposal are cuts to Medicaid, to a tune of ONE TRILLION dollars over ten years. This is being considered an end to long term nursing home care for our elderly, especially our low income elderly by many sources.
If you want a taste on how serious this will be on the elderly here it is. The state of Texas is considering legislation that will cut 10% in state Medicaid benefits, which equals a total of 33% percent reduction due to matching federal money.
Results of a survey in Texas assessing how dependent nursing homes are on Medicaid, suggest that 80 percent of the state’s 1,054 nursing homes would close and more than 60,000 residents would lose care if Medicaid funds dropped by 30 percent. according to ElderParent
This survey shows that within the state of Texas there are a lot of people who rely on Medicaid for their health and 24 hour care. Once these cuts happen over sixty thousand Texas seniors will have no place to turn and over a thousand nursing homes will shut their doors. Where will they go? Who will they turn to?
Medicaid cuts are happening all over this country, whether they are “blue states” or they are “red” states, but these proposed cuts that are happening now are pre-federal budget cuts to the program. Imagine what another 100 billion every year for ten will do to this program that is currently sustaining millions of our elderly.
On top of kicking seniors out of nursing homes, the Republicans are going to make it harder for them to find affordable housing. Within H.R 1 section 202 of the budget, over a half a billion will be cut for affordable housing for our seniors. This will accelerate homeless amongst our most vulnerable population, the very population that built this country we live in today. This is how the Republicans re-pay them for their service.
The Republicans had a choice to make, rather than having the most successful corporations and individuals contribute to society at the level of the 1990s, an era of prosperity, they would rather cut back on these services that help the elderly.
So instead of being the compassionate conservatives they proclaim to be, they have literally created death panels. The problem is these death panels are real and heartless.
Image: Seaside Post