Minnesota delays Medicaid cuts for elderlyPublished 7:00am Wednesday, January 1, 2014
By Chris Serres
The state of Minnesota is delaying a set of Medicaid rule changes that would have caused thousands of poor and elderly Minnesotans to lose government benefits covering home and nursing care.
The changes were due to take effect Wednesday, Jan. 1. But after an outcry from senior citizens’ groups, Gov. Mark Dayton ordered the state Department of Human Services (DHS) to postpone them until Jan. 1, 2015.
The new rules would have made it harder for low-income senior citizens to qualify for home-based care, such as bathing, dressing and toileting.
An estimated 2,800 poor and frail senior citizens who currently receive Medicaid and other forms of state assistance would have no longer qualified for home-based care under the new rules.
“I have asked my administration to delay implementation for at least one year, to assure that the necessary community supports are in place to ensure those seniors will receive alternative care,” Gov. Dayton said in a statement early Tuesday afternoon. “This delay will also provide the 2014 Legislature the opportunity to re-examine the law and make any changes deemed necessary.”
—Distributed by MCT Information Services