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NAHC Seeks More Funding for Respite and Family Caregiver Support

Posted on Friday, June 8, 2018 5:42 PM

NAHC and other like-minded groups are banding together to urge Congress to fully fund the 2019 fiscal year Labor/HHS/Education Appropriations bill for respite and family caregiver support.  These programs are invaluable to families who are caring for their loved ones at home.

Forty-three million family caregivers provide the vast majority of our nation’s long-term services and supports, permitting individuals of all ages to remain in their communities and avoid or delay more costly nursing home or foster care placements. AARP has estimated that family caregivers provide $470 billion in uncompensated care annually to adults, a staggering amount that is close to current federal and state spending on Medicaid health services and long-term services and supports combined ($553 billion).

National, State and local surveys have shown respite to be among the most frequently requested services by family caregivers. However, 85 percent of the nation’s family caregivers do not receive respite. Of the nearly half of family caregivers (44%) identified in the National Study of Caregiving who were providing substantial help with health care, fewer than 17% used respite. The percentage is similar for parents of children with special needs. For family caregivers caring for someone with Alzheimer’s, adults with developmental disabilities, individuals with Multiple Sclerosis (MS), ALS, spinal cord or traumatic brain injury, rare diseases, and grandparents raising grandchildren, respite is especially elusive.  

NAHC is strongly urging Congress to fund Lifespan Respite at the modest request of $5 million and to ensure an increase in funding for the National Family Caregiver Support Program.

Source: NAHC Report

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