Presentation (Project) Title

Memory Care and Medicaid in Rural Florida

Mentor Information

Lindsay Peterson (School of Aging Studies)

Presentation Format

Event

Abstract

Background: Older adults in rural areas experience greater risk for Alzheimer’s disease, which increases the need for long-term care (LTC) facilities that can accommodate their needs. Older adults seeking memory care in rural Florida face a significant disparity in access to assisted living communities (ALCs) compared to urban areas. Additionally, those in rural areas tend to have less access to ALCs that accept state subsidized health care. The purpose of this research is to investigate access to ALCs with memory care in Florida in relation to Medicaid acceptance. Methods: The two most rural and two most urban Managed Medical Assistance (Medicaid service) regions were selected for analyses, comprising 21 counties and 6 counties, respectively. Data on ALCs were obtained from Florida’s Agency for Healthcare Administration. This information included present memory care services, acceptance of Medicaid through the state supplemental payment assisted living waiver (ALW) and acceptance of optional state supplement (OSS). Results: Only 4 of the 21 counties in the two rural regions had at least one ALC that provided memory care. All six counties in the two urban regions had multiple ALCs with memory care. Rural ALCs that offered memory care had a lower Medicaid acceptance rate and roughly equal rates for OSS acceptance when compared to urban regions.

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Memory Care and Medicaid in Rural Florida

Background: Older adults in rural areas experience greater risk for Alzheimer’s disease, which increases the need for long-term care (LTC) facilities that can accommodate their needs. Older adults seeking memory care in rural Florida face a significant disparity in access to assisted living communities (ALCs) compared to urban areas. Additionally, those in rural areas tend to have less access to ALCs that accept state subsidized health care. The purpose of this research is to investigate access to ALCs with memory care in Florida in relation to Medicaid acceptance. Methods: The two most rural and two most urban Managed Medical Assistance (Medicaid service) regions were selected for analyses, comprising 21 counties and 6 counties, respectively. Data on ALCs were obtained from Florida’s Agency for Healthcare Administration. This information included present memory care services, acceptance of Medicaid through the state supplemental payment assisted living waiver (ALW) and acceptance of optional state supplement (OSS). Results: Only 4 of the 21 counties in the two rural regions had at least one ALC that provided memory care. All six counties in the two urban regions had multiple ALCs with memory care. Rural ALCs that offered memory care had a lower Medicaid acceptance rate and roughly equal rates for OSS acceptance when compared to urban regions.