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Decision Due On Adult Day Health Care Centers

Audio

Aired 3/1/11

State lawmakers are expected to decide this week whether to restore funding to adult day health care centers. More than 300 programs statewide provide skilled day treatment to disabled and frail seniors.

— State lawmakers are expected to decide this week whether to restore funding to adult day health care centers. More than 300 programs statewide provide skilled day treatment to disabled and frail seniors.

Adult day health care centers offer services to seniors with chronic physical and mental disabilities. The programs provide transportation, food, and therapies to clients during the day.

Mark Woodruff is program director at Casa Pacifica in South San Diego. He said if his center closes, their 160 clients will still need a lot of help.

"They're not gonna get better tomorrow because Governor Brown eliminates adult day health care," Woodruff emphasized. "They're going to go to the emergency room. They're going to go to skilled nursing facilities. All of these institutional levels of care cost the state money."

Adult day health care centers serve 37,000 seniors statewide. There are 22 programs in San Diego County, serving some 3,000 clients.

All told, adult day health care centers cost the state $176 million a year.

Gov. Jerry Brown said the state just can't afford to keep the centers open. Woodruff argued the only realistic alternative would be much more expensive skilled nursing homes.

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