Envisioning new financing models to mitigate the crisis in long-term care

As the U.S. aging population rapidly grows, there remains a severe shortage of care workers and personal assistants for older adults and people with disabilities despite a surplus of unfilled jobs. Low pay, lack of basic benefits, and the paucity of opportunities for growth have resulted in a huge turnover in the long-term services and supports (LTSS) industry. Massachusetts, for example, experienced a care worker staffing crisis even before the pandemic, and a staffing exodus continues in the care workforce. Earlier this year at Brigham and Women’s and Massachusetts General hospitals, 20-30 percent of beds were occupied by patients who needed to be discharged but were struggling to find a setting to receive long-term care and recover from their injuries or illnesses; at Tufts Medical Center it was typical to have 20-30 patients a day who would have been released if a nursing home or…
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