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Common People Holding Our Government Accountable for Enforcing Our Rights

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Home Care Protests in Missouri

From our friend Bob Williams:

Disabled protest state’s proposed cuts in home care
By Virginia Young
Post-Dispatch Jefferson City Bureau

JEFFERSON CITY — People with disabilities and their caregivers came to the Capitol today to protest a budget cut that could make it harder for the disabled to remain in their homes.

On the chopping block: personal care services, which include assistance with meals, dressing and bathing.

Gov. Jay Nixon’s proposed budget would limit personal assistance services that a person can receive under the Medicaid program to 3.5 hours a day, or 60 hours a month. Those with greater needs could appeal for an additional 20 hours a month.

Nixon’s budget counts on $8.6 million in savings — $3.1 million in state funds and $5.5 million in federal funds — from the cutback.

Many people on Medicaid receive more than 60 hours of personal care a month. They say that without the attendant services, they could be forced to move to nursing homes, which are more expensive and would cost the state more than home care.

At a Capitol press conference today, Bob Pund of Columbia, who was paralyzed in an auto accident 20 years ago, said he needs help “in nearly every aspect of my life. Attendants are like oxygen to me.”

Not only is it a safety net, it helps people maintain their dignity and quality of life, others said.

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