Dear Editor,

The Wisconsin Health Care Association and Wisconsin Center for Assisted Living (WHCA/WiCAL) represents skilled nursing and assisted living centers across the state. On behalf of Wisconsin’s care providers and the elderly and disabled residents they serve every day, I would like to thank State Rep. John Nygren for his leadership and commitment to long-term care during budget proceedings on the Joint Finance Committee. Nygren has played a vital role in advancing critical reimbursement increases for skilled nursing Medicaid and Family Care funding.

Wisconsin’s long-term care providers are currently facing a crisis in the availability of caregivers. A recent statewide survey of care providers found that one in five caregiver positions remains unfilled. Our providers have worked tirelessly to deliver quality care with limited state resources, but additional reimbursement is needed now to maintain care excellence and to ensure access for our frail elderly and disabled community members.

Nygren’s leadership in advancing a budget proposal with resources for long-term care providers will mean more competitive wages for caregivers and will translate to better paying jobs, which will help providers fill open caregiver positions to provide quality care to long-term care residents.

We as a society will ultimately be judged by how we care for our elderly and disabled family members, neighbors and loved ones. Nygren has shown true leadership in his efforts through the Joint Finance Committee to protect and increase funding for care services for our frail elderly and disabled populations. Wisconsin’s care providers thank Nygren for his commitment to long-term care.

 

John Vander Meer

President & CEO of Wisconsin Health Care Association/Wisconsin Center for Assisted Living