CiminoCare’s CEO, Mark J. Cimino, was honored to testify before the California State Assembly Aging and Long-Term Care Committee on October 25, 2017. In this informational hearing on Services for Seniors, Mr. Cimino was asked to report on the Assisted Living Waiver (ALW) Program and its benefits and challenges to date. The invitation came from the California Assisted Living Association.
During this committee meeting, Mr. Cimino noted the way the current Assisted Living Waiver is set up, and explained why there is a cap on the number of seniors who can benefit from the program. Currently, the ALW Program allows some Medi-Cal recipients to opt to live in an Assisted Living community versus only having the option of moving into a Skilled Nursing facility. The current cap is set at 3,700 while there are potentially tens of thousands of seniors in California who could benefit from the program. At the hearing, the overriding theme was underscoring the lack of appropriate housing for vulnerable and low-income seniors throughout California. This housing shortage is greatly exacerbated when those seniors later require long-term care. One key factor in cost containment of medical costs is by firstly establishing stable housing. The Assisted Living Waiver program is a significant, promising solution in that it provides both stable housing while simultaneously reducing costs to the Medi-Cal system.
Mr. Cimino asked those in attendance, “In these days of stress on the system, where can you find a win-win-win situation?” The first win refers to the win for the resident by being afforded more choices and a better quality of life. The second win refers to the win for the Medi-Cal system because they would be housing some of these seniors in Assisted Living communities (which would be more cost effective than moving seniors into Skilled Nursing facilities). The third win refers to the win for Long-Term Care, as those involved would more appropriately be able to use their senior living resources.
For more information about the Assembly Aging and Long-Term Care Committee Assembly Member Ash Kalra, please visit the California State Assembly website.
For more information about the ALW Program, please visit the Department of Health Care Services website.
This blog post was originally written by Mark Cimino, Chief Executive Officer/Owner of CiminoCare and Erin Stone, Director of Marketing for CiminoCare. It was originally published on the CiminoCare blog, which includes ALW-pertinent information, in addition to updates on any upcoming ALW forums.