Another challenge in Olympia

Dear Friends of Full Life Care,

It should be no surprise that the COVID-19 pandemic has brought and will continue to bring devastating economic impacts. State government is no different. Budget analysts are predicting massive revenue deficits.

State officials are now considering various drafts of budget reductions. The worst-case scenario – a de-funding of Adult Day Health programs statewide.

Budget officials believe that “clients who access program generally already receive personal care services.” This is a gross oversimplification of the challenges faced by our clients. The elderly and people with disabilities require a complex spectrum of care, and Adult Day Health programs play a vital role in that spectrum.

Ceasing Adult Day Health services will only force those clients to seek care at a higher cost. That means a higher cost to the state, and the proven risk of reduced quality of life.

Some of us remember enduring a similar closure in 2009 during the recession. A federal court ordered the state to reinstate the programs to protect clients’ rights. But health assessments of those clients showed that in just three months without Adult Day Health access, 65 percent of those clients suffered health and/or functional decline.

Knowing that, Full Life has met that challenge of delivering services to our clients in spite of the statewide quarantine order we’ve been under since early March. With Adult Day Health facilities closed, we’ve developed new and innovative methods relying on video presentations, video conferencing and an exponential increase in telephonic visitation and coordination with in-home caregivers to make sure we’re maintaining contact with our clients and overseeing their health needs. Despite lock-down, we’re continuing to deliver service.

Full Life Care has begun working with similar health care providers across the state to mobilize forces for an impending budget threat. We plan to begin a public informational messaging campaign next month and are scheduling meetings with key legislators.

We wanted you to know. We’ll keep you informed of our progress, and will be asking you for specific help in the very near future.