LONG-TERM CARE: Implications of Supreme Court's Olmstead Decision Are Still Unfolding
GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE WASHINGTON DC
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I am pleased to be here today as you address challenges in providing for long-term care, in view of the Supreme Courts 1999 decision, known as Olmstead, that addressed issues pertaining to the setting in which a person with disabilities receives care. Long-term care includes many types of services that a person with a physical or mental disability may need, and encompasses a wide array of care settings. Such care can be provided in institutional settings such as nursing homes or state psychiatric facilities, or in community settings such as assisted living facilities, adult foster homes, and peoples own homes. About 80 percent of the estimated 5.2 million elderly individuals who require assistance with dally activities live at home or in community-based settings, while about 20 percent live in nursing homes or in other institutions. Many people with disabilities who live outside of institutions rely on home and community-based services such as home health care or nursing services, assistance with meals or medication management, and personal care services. Many people with disabilities are elderly adults, but children and adults of all ages have diverse types of disabilities that may require long-term care services.
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