June 03, 2021
Contact: Eric Heisler, eheisler@phca.org

Survey reveals long-term care is essential for Pennsylvania’s seniors, deserves pivotal state funding support

Harrisburg, Pa. (June 2, 2021) –– An overwhelming majority of Pennsylvania residents believe nursing homes and long-term care communities are essential to caring for and protecting Pennsylvania’s aging population, according to a survey commissioned by the Pennsylvania Health Care Association (PHCA). The survey also highlights strong opinions that long-term care should receive state funding from the American Rescue Plan to support workers and residents.

 

With 800 Pennsylvania registered voters participating, the digital survey reveals that 88% of respondents agree that long-term care communities are essential to caring for Pennsylvania seniors. This opinion comes at a time when nearly 1 million Pennsylvania seniors will begin to age into the demographic most in need of long-term care over the next 15 years. 

Respondents also strongly favor prioritizing long-term care workers and residents for an allocation of federal stimulus funds from the American Rescue Plan, which sent $7.3 billion to Pennsylvania. Nearly 40% of all respondents decided long-term care should receive funds instead of using stimulus money for the state’s budget, business grants, infrastructure projects or K-12 education.

More than 60% of the respondents believe long-term care needs more government funding to continue protecting residents from COVID-19, while 20% responded unsurely. Funding would support pandemic-related costs, including personal protective equipment (PPE), testing and staffing. 

“It is clear that Pennsylvanians understand the critical role long-term care plays in providing care for our aging population,” said Zach Shamberg, president and CEO of the Pennsylvania Health Care Association. “There is a resounding recognition that our healthcare heroes, as well as the vulnerable residents they serve, desperately need support from elected leaders as we approach the June 30th state budget deadline. Long-term care must be a priority in Pennsylvania, so that our parents and grandparents are not left without the care they need and deserve.”

 

The Pennsylvania Health Care Association has advocated for $396 million from the American Rescue Plan for the commonwealth’s nursing homes, and $52 million for personal care homes and assisted living communities. Funding will help sustain operations and ultimately support residents and frontline workers.

 

A complete survey report, including background information, can be found here.

 

 

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