Nursing homes at heart of new budget rhetoric

Bloomberg yesterday released the results of a national poll it conducted last weekend showing that a majority of Americans feel they would be worse off if House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s (R-Wisc.) plan to overhaul Medicare is adopted.

In analyzing the poll results, Bloomberg cast Ryan as a “polarizing figure among Americans,” given that 26 percent of respondents view him unfavorably while 23 percent see him favorably. This is not a surprising development.

The more interesting bit of reporting yesterday came from The Huffington Post, which relayed findings from pollsters Anzalone Liszt Research. Its latest poll says Americans are more concerned with Medicaid’s future under the House Republican budget plan.

“Told that the Ryan budget ‘would cut $750 billion from Medicaid, including funding for 80 percent of nursing home residents, forcing many seniors to be kicked out of their nursing homes,’ 63 percent of respondents [of the Anzalone poll] said they were ‘very’ concerned,” wrote Michael McAuliff of The Huffington Post.

Despite the research firm’s openly Democratic alignment, and the clearly loaded question it asked respondents, it’s hard to think Americans, especially seniors, don’t feel this way. The question is, nursing home providers: How do you feel? Please sound off in the comments below.

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