Health officials: State nursing homes may refuse patients waiting on Medicaid


FILE PHOTO – Joyce Clark, seated, receives mail from a caretaker at her apartment in Topeka, Kan., Thursday, May 26, 2016. Funding meant to keep seniors like Clark out of nursing homes by offering them in-home services soon will be cut. It’s one of the steps the state is taking to eliminate a $151 million shortfall in the state’s $16 billion budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1. (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)

TOPEKA —  Health care officials say Kansas nursing homes are hesitant to take patients who need hospice care and are waiting on Medicaid coverage because they may not get paid for the care they provide.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that a backlog of Medicaid applications has been affecting Kansas nursing homes in recent years. Beneficiaries of Kansas’ privatized Medicaid program, KanCare, wait months to see their applications approved while nursing homes provide care for which they aren’t paid.

Health care official Morgan Bell raised the issue last week to a KanCare oversight committee. She says Topeka-area nursing homes aren’t ready to take patients waiting on KanCare and are likely to die soon.

A spokeswoman for the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services says continuing to reduce the backlog will help build trust between KanCare and nursing homes.

Gov. Sam Brownback vetoed an effort by the legislature to expand Medicaid in March.


About Author

AP Wire

Comments are closed.