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Senate LTC Hearing Focuses on Home and Community-Based Care
On September 25, the Senate Finance Committee apprehended a trial to think the position of home and community-based care as options for meeting long-term care requirements.
Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) testified on the subject of S. 799, the "Community Choices Act," which he introduced in March 2007. This bill would have need of state Medicaid programs to wrap community-based personal care attendant services and ropes for all beneficiaries who are resolute to have need of an institutional level of care. Harkin tell the committee that the costs associated with his bill "would be mostly offset by the benefits of having people with disabilities who are employed, paying taxes, and contributing to the economy." He emphasized that community-based services and supports "can transform the lives of people with significant disabilities" and "this is the bare minimum we can do for every human being in our society."
Another witness was Mitch LaPlante, Ph.D., an associate professor at the University of California, who has conducted research concluding that the Harkin bill would cost in the range of $1.4 billion to $3.7 billion annually – approximately one-tenth the amount the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has estimated. Describing the CBO estimate as "inflated and erroneous," LaPlante said it was too high because it assumed the bill would apply to persons who are not candidates for institutional care.