H. R. 5774
IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
July 12, 2006
Ms. Harris (for herself and Mrs. Myrick) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Veterans’ Affairs
To require the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to publish a strategic plan for long-term care, and for other purposes.
Congress makes the following findings:
The number of aging veterans in the United States is increasing rapidly, with the number of veterans 85 years old and older expected to increase from approximately 870,000 to 1,300,000 during the next 10 years.
This group of veterans will have a significant need for nursing home care and will require a variety of noninstitutional long-term care services.
The Department of Veterans Affairs is struggling to meet its current obligations and is ill prepared to meet the long-term care needs of America’s aging veteran population.
Long-term care was not included in the Capital Asset Realignment for Enhanced Services (CARES) process because of a lack of forecasts and policies needed to project and plan to meet future demands for long-term care.
The Department of Veterans Affairs has failed to comply with the CARES Commission's 2003 recommendation to develop a long-term care strategic plan, which failure has had a detrimental effect on the welfare of veterans in need of such care.
Strategic plan for long-term care
Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs shall publish a strategic plan for long-term care.
The plan published under subsection (a) shall—
comply with the recommendations of the CARES Commission;
contain policies and strategies for—
the delivery of care in domiciliaries, residential treatment facilities, and nursing homes and for seriously mentally ill veterans;
maximizing the use of State veterans homes;
locating domiciliary units as close to patient populations as feasible; and
identifying freestanding nursing homes as an acceptable care model;
include data on—
the care of catastrophically disabled veterans; and
the geographic distribution of catastrophically disabled veterans;
address the spectrum of noninstitutional long-term care options, including—
home-based primary care;
adult day health care;
skilled home health care; and
community residential care; and
cost and quality comparison analyses of all the different levels of care;
detailed information about geographic distribution of services and gaps in care; and
specific plans for working with Medicare, Medicaid, and private insurance companies to expand care.