AARP Connecticut is pleased that the State has convened a Nursing Home and Assisted Living Oversight Working Group to discuss the impact of COVID-19 and how to protect residents moving forward. However, we are very disappointed that this working group, despite having 34 members, does not include a single person who resides in a nursing home or assisted living facility, or who receives long-term supports and services in a community setting.
Older and disabled people can speak for themselves, and they should be invited to participate in conversations about their own health, safety, and future. They deserve the opportunity to discuss the impact of COVID-19 on their daily lives and to share their ideas for how we can create a better system of care. No amount of expertise can replace lived experience, and it is a shame that Connecticut’s 18,000 nursing home residents do not have a seat at the table for this important conversation.
We also know that nursing homes and assisted living facilities are not the only settings for long-term supports and services (LTSS). Over the past several years, the State of Connecticut has done great work to transition thousands of older and disabled people from institutions to home and community settings. Nearly two-thirds of Connecticut’s LTSS recipients reside in home and community settings, and they were impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic as well.
AARP Connecticut is asking the Nursing Home and Assisted Living Oversight Working Group to expand its membership to include long-term care recipients and expand its focus to include home and community-based services. We believe these voices will lead to a more robust and productive conversation that will create a better future for all Connecticut residents.
This story is provided by AARP Connecticut. Visit the AARP Connecticut page for more news, events, and programs affecting retirement, health care, and more.
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