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Administration for Community Living to Promote Community-Based Healthcare for America's Seniors

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 18, 2012
Contact: Emily White
703-548-0019

Administration for Community Living to Promote Community-Based Healthcare for America's Seniors

Home healthcare community commends HHS for encouraging use of clinically advanced, cost-effective, patient preferred home healthcare

WASHINGTON, DC — The Partnership for Quality Home Healthcare — a national coalition representing more than 1,500 community- and hospital-based home health agencies nationwide — today commended the U.S. Department for Health and Human Services (HHS) on its announced establishment of the Administration for Community Living (ACL), which will promote community and independent living. The new agency's objective is to enable seniors and people with disabilities to access home healthcare and other services so they can remain in their homes and communities rather than in institutions.

The new agency will coordinate programs previously managed by multiple organizations including the Administration on Aging, the Office on Disability and the Administration on Developmental Disabilities. In addition to serving America's aging and disabled populations with increased community living services, the agency aims to ensure access to quality healthcare services by giving patients the choice of receiving care at home instead of in institutional settings.

"HHS' announcement underscores the importance of promoting community living and improving access to home healthcare services," said Senator John Breaux (D-LA), senior counsel to the Partnership for Quality Home Healthcare. "We commend HHS for its recognition of the importance of enabling seniors and people with disabilities to remain in their homes and communities."

Skilled home healthcare is clinically advanced, cost-effective and patient preferred. Home healthcare allows patients to receive a variety of care services at home, including cardiac and pulmonary care, neurological rehabilitation, intravenous therapy and chronic disease management, among others; and it is significantly less expensive than care provided in traditional settings.

"We look forward to working with the Administration and Congress as the new Administration for Community Living is established," added Breaux. "With expanded access to skilled home healthcare and other critical services, seniors will be able to age at home as they prefer and taxpayers will realize significant healthcare savings through chronic disease management and reduced hospitalizations."

Research shows that 89 percent of American seniors prefer to age in place, stay home and remain independent. Nationwide, approximately 3.4 million Medicare beneficiaries receive skilled home healthcare services to treat illnesses related to acute, chronic or rehabilitative needs.

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