How Can America Provide and Pay For Long-Term Services and Supports for the Elderly and People with Disabilities
The problems of providing and paying for long-term services and supports for the elderly and people with disabilities have been cataloged at great length and in many places. Our current non-system relies largely on families, out-of pocket payments, and Medicaid. Many continue to think Medicare will help; modest awareness campaigns have been mounted to help people plan ahead. Past efforts at reform from the Pepper Commission to the CLASS ACT have fallen flat. But the problem has to be addressed; we can’t afford to fail, and social work’s ability to draw from different disciplines and learn from past efforts positions us to help the nation move forward. And, as if organizing and paying for care was not enough, this topic raises numerous questions about what types of services and supports are wanted, how to insure quality, and how future workforce issues can be addressed. Again, these are areas where our profession is clearly in the forefront.