Longietti-co-sponsored bill giving senior citizens quicker access to in-home care through Medicaid heads to Senate

HARRISBURG, Dec. 11 – A bill co-sponsored by Rep. Mark Longietti, D-Mercer, that would allow qualifying senior citizens to receive in-home care at an accelerated rate through Medicaid was approved Monday by the House.

Currently, senior citizens who qualify for Medicaid but opt for in-home care are ineligible for those services until their application is fully reviewed, which could take months, while those who select nursing home care receive access to those facilities immediately.

“This obstacle leaves families seeking in-home care financially strained and forces the individual into a nursing home. But, H.B. 1829 eradicates those worries by expediting the approval process and ensuring senior citizens receive the care they need – regardless of their desired service,” Longietti said.

“This bill is in the best interest of senior citizens and the Commonwealth. It allows the individual to receive quality care while in the comfort of their own home, alleviates financial strain and saves the Commonwealth money over nursing home costs.”

The Pennsylvania Homecare Association reports the Commonwealth spends just over $65,000 a year for every person who is admitted to a nursing home, whereas it only costs the state $31,000 a year for every individual who opts for in-home care, which saves the Commonwealth an estimated $34,000 per person each year.

House Bill 1829 passed the House 191-0. It now heads to the state Senate for consideration.