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Putting People Above Programs continued...

While we have seen improvements, there is more that we can and must do to improve the quality of care for Michigan’s 40,000 plus nursing home residents.

To accelerate our state’s progress, I am directing the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA), Department of Community Health (DCH) and the Office of Services to the Aging (OSA) to develop Michigan-specific quality measures and person-centered performance incentives for nursing homes. Together, this team will work to develop a model similar to Michigan’s Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program where industry can choose to proactively participate, outcomes are improved and we all win.

A Long-Term Plan for Long-Term Care

Accessing long-term care has been challenging for many Michigan residents for decades due to a lack of coordination between state departments. We recognize the need to put people first and are working to better coordinate our aging efforts at the state level.

For example, today individuals with both Medicare and Medicaid coverage have to navigate two completely independent, complicated programs. Through the new MI Health Link program, all services will be integrated into a single health care delivery model. MI Health Link will launch in four areas in 2015 including the Upper Peninsula, eight counties in southwest Michigan, Macomb County, and Wayne County. This important first step will integrate services for more than 100,000 older adults.

Despite this we know there is more work to be done. The Long-Term Care Supports and Services Advisory Commission spent the past year reviewing strategies to revamp Michigan’s long-term care system. Those recommendations focus on a coordinated system that puts people above programs. The message goes on to discuss safety and security, talent, age-friendly Michigan, older adult workforce, reinventing retirement, life-long learning and travel and recreation.  More information can be found at: http://www.michigan.gov/snyder/0,4668,7-277-57577_57657-329668--,00.html