Home Home Health Care Dwelling well being care suppliers caught in personnel and monetary binds

Dwelling well being care suppliers caught in personnel and monetary binds

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LEXINGTON, Va. (WDBJ) – We met Curtis McCormick and his professional caregiver Joyce Alexander this past March.

As the pandemic spread, both were concerned as Curtis was among the most at risk.

But now home care workers like Joyce and the company she works for are also facing a critical financial dilemma.

“I would say we are in a crisis here in Virginia, not only with insufficient caregivers,” said Bill Hurt, Vice President of Operations for AmeriCare Plus, “but we are also looking at vendors, small business owners, who are going out of business.”

AmeriCare Plus, like many other companies, is struggling to find workers to hire.

Since they are a one-to-one service, they need a supervisor for each customer.

“We have over 50 people on a waiting list at our company,” said Hurt. “We currently need over 50 caregivers to hire, and that’s just for AmeriCare Plus. And I know that all of my friends who are also active in the industry are in the same boat. “

Meanwhile, Richmond lawmakers increased the minimum wage but did not increase Medicaid payments accordingly.

“We received a 92 cents increase in reimbursement to compensate for a $ 2.25 increase in the minimum wage,” said Hurt.

It is enough to put up to 70 companies out of business.

“You’re just giving up,” he said.

Providers hope that the state will push forward federal funds already allocated to home nursing to cover their costs retrospectively until last May so they can stay in business.

“That would allow us to pay our caregivers competitive wages, firstly to keep the people we have and secondly, to attract more caregivers,” said Hurt.

As for Curtis? Joyce is still helping him stay home.

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