The elders care lawyer in Washington state says the state’s healthcare system has made some “major mistakes” in its care of its aging population, including allowing parents to get care that is not available to everyone, including some who are elderly.
According to a report by the State Law Center, about 1.3 million adults are eligible for free or reduced-cost care under state law and nearly 500,000 people are eligible.
The report found that some people with dementia are denied care because they have been deemed too frail or old to qualify for it.
“A lot of the older people, particularly those with dementia, are not getting the care that they should be getting,” said Susan Dolan, senior counsel with the center.
Dolan, who is also the executive director of the state Senate Aging and Disability Coalition, said the state has not adequately funded care for those who are not eligible for care, and that some providers are reluctant to take on elderly people.
In addition, Dolan said, many care providers do not have the training or the experience to help the elderly care themselves.
Many of the services are available for people who are eligible but cannot afford them, she said.
“There’s no guarantee that there will be somebody that will be there, that’s available to help.”‘
We are not in a position’ to care for people with disabilitiesThe report, released on Wednesday, highlights concerns about some care providers, including those who offer free or discounted care, that do not offer the necessary training or are not qualified to provide it.
“We are in a situation where there is a gap of about 10 percent between what is offered to seniors and what is available to adults with disabilities,” said Dolan.
Dolan said there is no assurance that those who cannot afford care will be able to access it, or that it will be adequate for those with disabilities.
She said the report’s findings do not mean that the state needs to close care programs, but that it needs to do more to address the problem.
She said some of the gaps, particularly for people of color and the elderly, could be addressed by increasing the number of providers who offer the care they do offer, as well as by providing additional training and mentoring.
The report notes that some of those providers, such as the state-funded senior living program, do not provide training or other assistance to help people with Alzheimer’s disease, and many do not include any of the other forms of care, such a home care, which is usually provided through an outside agency.
But the report recommends that states look at expanding such programs, with the goal of allowing those with Alzheimer or dementia to receive care from such providers.
For the report, Danko reviewed more than 600,000 comments submitted to the State Health Department about how the state is providing care for the elderly.
She also reviewed a report from the state legislature on the health of seniors by the state Office of Aging and Social Services, and the state Department of Aging, Disability, and Care.
(Reporting by Eric Beech; Editing by Andrew Hay)