Institutionalized Medicaid Recipients Sue For Right To Choose Where They Live

September 23 2008

Nursing home residents in Florida have launched a potential class action lawsuit against the state for illegally forcing them to live in nursing homes, rather than allowing them to choose where they want to live.

The suit alleges that the nursing homes have pressured politicians into making community care difficult to qualify for, so they benefit financially. The suit has been filed on behalf of nearly 8,500 institutionalized Floridians.

People who are sick or disabled to the point that they require significant care, usually have few problems in finding placement in nursing homes. However, they face long waiting lists should they want to stay at home and receive Medicaid supported services such as home visits. This essentially forces them into nursing homes in order to receive the care they need. According to reports, $59.5 billion was spent in 2007 on institutional care through Medicaid.

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