skip to main content
skip to newscasts

Monday, July 22, 2024

Public News Service Logo
facebook instagram linkedin reddit youtube twitter
view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Gov. Whitmer endorses Kamala Harris for president, says she's not leaving Michigan; Secret Service director, grilled by lawmakers on the Trump assassination attempt, says we failed; Teachers rally at national convention in Houston; Opioid settlement fund fuels anti-addiction battle in Indiana; Nonprofit agency says corporate donations keep programs going.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

Kamala Harris rapidly picks up Democratic Support - including vast majority of state party leaders; National rent-cap proposal could benefit NY renters; Carter's adoption support: Empowering families, strengthening workplaces.

view newscast page
play newscast audioPlay

It's grass-cutting season and with it, rural lawn mower races, Montana's drive-thru blood project is easing shortages, rural Americans spend more on food when transportation costs are tallied, and a lack of good childcare is thwarting rural business owners.

Nursing Homes, Prescription Prices Top Concerns for AARP Virginia

play audio
Play

Friday, January 13, 2023   

Nursing home staff shortages and rising prescription drug prices are two of the big legislative priorities this year for AARP Virginia.

The group said 80% of Virginia nursing homes do not meet the staffing requirements outlined by the U.S. Centers on Medicare and Medicaid Services. A 2021 report from the state's Joint Commission on Health Care labeled staffing shortages a top priority. Previous attempts to pass bills on this issue have failed, with opponents often citing costs.

Jared Calfee, associate state director of advocacy and outreach for AARP Virginia, pointed out the consequences of understaffing can be life-threatening.

"What we know about staffing is that understaffing leads to all kinds of problems in nursing homes; more falls, pressure sores, infection, dehydration, hospital admissions, overuse of antipsychotic medications and resident deaths," Calfee outlined. "All of those things correlate directly with staffing levels."

But some facilities argued it would hinder their ability to hire new staff based on new guidelines. Others said with the current labor shortage, more money should be spent helping nursing homes find staff. In early 2022, President Joe Biden announced a set of guidelines to improve safety and quality at nursing homes, with staffing being one priority.

AARP Virginia also wants lawmakers to consider creating a Prescription Drug Affordability Board, as a few other states have done. Calfee described it as an independent body, which could evaluate drug prices to determine if increases are valid.

"If the Prescription Drug Affordability Board determined that the price increase was unjustified and that the manufacturer couldn't really make a great case for why the price increased other than the fact that they wanted to charge more money for it, then they could set what's called an upper payment limit" on the drug, Calfee explained.

He added the limit would set prices at a reasonable rate throughout the state's supply chain, from pharmacists to consumers.

In a 2022 report, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services said more than 1,200 products saw price increases exceeding the 8.5% rate of inflation. It found overall price increases for drugs were 31.6%.

Disclosure: AARP Virginia contributes to our fund for reporting on Budget Policy & Priorities, Health Issues, Hunger/Food/Nutrition, and Senior Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
more stories
Democrats have a chance for a reset at their August convention, but an SMU political science professor says the party must proceed carefully to pick its new presidential nominee in a smooth and graceful manner. (Fox_Dsign/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

With fewer than four months before the November general election, Democrats are planning their next move following President Joe Biden's decision to …


Social Issues

play sound

California political analysts predict the race for president will tighten since President Joe Biden has dropped out and endorsed Vice President Kamala…

Social Issues

play sound

Over the weekend, while self-isolating and recovering from COVID, President Joe Biden announced he is stepping down as the Democratic candidate in …


In Vermont, Maine and the District of Columbia, people with felony convictions do not lose their right to vote. (Studio Romantic/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

About 7,000 Nebraskans with felony convictions who thought they'd be able to register to vote, now face uncertainty. In question is the …

play sound

More Americans are learning about the conservative think tank the Heritage Foundation this election season, but its influence has been decades in the …

U.S. per capita consumption of fish and shellfish rose from nearly 16 lbs. in 2002 to more than 20 lbs. in 2021, a 31% increase according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

play sound

New global guidelines for aquaculture aim to address growing concerns about the industry's impact on the oceans. Scientists have suggested ways to …

Social Issues

play sound

Backers of President Joe Biden's rent cap proposal said it could benefit many New Yorkers. The plan calls for capping rent increases at 5% in …

Social Issues

play sound

Virginia is making a financial investment to help tackle the state's childcare shortage. This year's budget allocates more than $1 billion to …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021