Medicaid, Medicare, whatever...

Russ Vaughn
In yesterday's campaign speech, Barack Obama demonstrated that he really doesn't understand long term care or nursing home care as it is known to most of us. Obama made the claim that under the Ryan/Republican debt reduction plan that seniors would have to go on Medicaid to go into a nursing home with their bills being paid by the government. Well for Mr. Obama's edification, that is exactly the situation right now, under his administration. Like far too many of those ignorant of the issue of long term care, Barry seems to think there is a Medicare benefit for residential status in nursing homes.

The fact is, Mr. Chief Executive of the Federal Government, no such benefit exists. The Medicare benefit for nursing home stays is limited to what is called skilled nursing stays which normally occur following a minimum three-day hospitalization of a Medicare recipient when that individual is discharged directly from a hospital to a skilled-nursing facility for recuperative care.

Under this program, Medicare will pick up the full tab for only 20 days. A longer stay requires re-hospitalization or certain other qualifiers but under no circumstances is this an open-ended program. In most cases, after day 20 the patient begins to assume the costs up to $128.00 per day from day 21 through day 100. Beyond day 100, guess what, Barry, the full expense rests on the financial shoulders of the patient and the patient's family and their personal insurance resources. The only way ANY patient will qualify for free nursing home care from that point on is under state-operated MEDICAID programs.

Listen closely: there is NO Medicare benefit for long term care, nor has there ever been one. This is a common misconception among American seniors but you would hope that the Chief Executive of the United States, and thus the Medicare program, would be better informed. That he would reveal his ignorance before a national audience in what was touted as a major policy address should embarrass even his handlers and his fellow Democrats who are generally inured to such normal human reactions as being caught with their trousers around their ankles in a public setting. If any of them read this, they'll probably be rolling their eyes dismissively and saying, "Medicaid, Medicare, whatever!"

It fits the careful way they spend and govern...

 

In yesterday's campaign speech, Barack Obama demonstrated that he really doesn't understand long term care or nursing home care as it is known to most of us. Obama made the claim that under the Ryan/Republican debt reduction plan that seniors would have to go on Medicaid to go into a nursing home with their bills being paid by the government. Well for Mr. Obama's edification, that is exactly the situation right now, under his administration. Like far too many of those ignorant of the issue of long term care, Barry seems to think there is a Medicare benefit for residential status in nursing homes.

The fact is, Mr. Chief Executive of the Federal Government, no such benefit exists. The Medicare benefit for nursing home stays is limited to what is called skilled nursing stays which normally occur following a minimum three-day hospitalization of a Medicare recipient when that individual is discharged directly from a hospital to a skilled-nursing facility for recuperative care.

Under this program, Medicare will pick up the full tab for only 20 days. A longer stay requires re-hospitalization or certain other qualifiers but under no circumstances is this an open-ended program. In most cases, after day 20 the patient begins to assume the costs up to $128.00 per day from day 21 through day 100. Beyond day 100, guess what, Barry, the full expense rests on the financial shoulders of the patient and the patient's family and their personal insurance resources. The only way ANY patient will qualify for free nursing home care from that point on is under state-operated MEDICAID programs.

Listen closely: there is NO Medicare benefit for long term care, nor has there ever been one. This is a common misconception among American seniors but you would hope that the Chief Executive of the United States, and thus the Medicare program, would be better informed. That he would reveal his ignorance before a national audience in what was touted as a major policy address should embarrass even his handlers and his fellow Democrats who are generally inured to such normal human reactions as being caught with their trousers around their ankles in a public setting. If any of them read this, they'll probably be rolling their eyes dismissively and saying, "Medicaid, Medicare, whatever!"

It fits the careful way they spend and govern...