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Letter: Strengthen Medicaid to benefit New Yorkers

The Jan. 12 article addressing the costs of the Medicaid Program in New York State focused only on taxpayers, and included quotes about “out-of-control spending” and vague statements relative to “rising costs.” There must also be a focus on the importance of the Medicaid Program to those who receive its benefits.

In the world of long term care, a nursing home can cost a resident upwards of $10,000 per month.

I know of very few Western New Yorkers who have that amount of money available to pay a nursing home each month, and neither Medicare nor private insurance pay for long term care in a skilled nursing facility.

So, in order to get the care they need, the only option for people who cannot afford such a huge private pay bill each month is to enroll in the Medicaid Program.

It’s easy to complain about taxes, and focus on cutting government spending always plays well with voters. However, it is more important that find ways to pay for critically needed government programs, like Medicaid, to help those who have no other place to turn.

Nobody thinks they will ever end up in a nursing home, or that they will have to go on Medicaid, but it happens often.

The state and county must find ways to strengthen and fund Medicaid so that it will continue to be a valuable benefit for all New Yorkers.

Bradley Loliger, Esq.

Buffalo

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