Local Adult Daycare Centers & Nursing Homes In Jeopardy Of Closing
OKLAHOMA CITY - If lawmakers do not pass a budget deal, thousands of Oklahoma seniors will feel the impact. Adult daycare programs and nursing homes are in jeopardy of closing. The people who care for the elderly are keeping close tabs on what is happening at the state capitol. They are worried that major funding cuts will leave many elderly Oklahomans without proper care.
Adult daycare center are a source of care and a way to lift participants’ spirits. It is also a way to stay socially connected.
Daily Living Centers of Oklahoma participant Fran Dodson sits with her best friend Juanita.
“This is my good friend,” said Dodson. ‘Just being here.”
Just being there makes Dodson happy. She is one of thousands of elderly Oklahomans who depend on the Medicaid Advantage program. It keeps her and the rest of the adult daycare participants out of nursing homes or from being home alone without care.
“If I didn’t have this place,” said Dodson. “I would be stuck at home doing nothing, walking the floors.”
But the Advantage program is facing big cuts, deep enough to close adult daycares centers like the one Dodson attends. Letters from the CEO are going out to all Daily Living Center participants' family members.
“Letting them know the situation as we know it right now,” said Brian Rush, Daily Center CEO. “With the finances and the revenue of the legislature.”
With potential DHS and advantage budget cuts. Rush said his four non-profit adult daycare centers could lose $1.2 million dollars in funding, or about three-quarters of his budget.
“My heart is here,” said Dodson. “My passion is here.”
He is worried what might happen to the participants and employees if the state cannot agree on a budget.
“So where are they going to go?" asked Dodson. "I don’t know. I mean, I have options and they options but none of them are the best options.”
Rush has reached out to private donors for financial help. He said that could help make-up for some of the money they could lose, but not all of it.