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                                                       CLASS Act offers ‘innovative’
Barbara Manard,
VP of Long Term Care/
                                                       reform approach: Sebelius
Health Strategies, AAHSA
                                                       By Brett Bakshis                                                                                                workers could pay an average
Q: The CLASS Act, with its first-                       A Senate proposal to create                                                                                     of a $65-per-month premium.
                                                       a national long-term care                                                                                       That could make them eligible
ever proposed long-term care daily
                                                       disability insurance pro-                                                                                       for at least $50 per day in long-

                                                                                                                                 Photo: Kansas Office of the Governor
benefit, is causing unusually high
                                                       gram gained a big stamp of                                                                                      term care and disability insur-
optimism as of this writing, isn’t it?
                                                       approval last month when a                                                                                      ance benefits in the event they
A: We’re thrilled with how it’s going. It’s            cabinet member sent a letter                                                                                    have a disability.
marvelous to have so much support on                   of support on behalf of Presi-                                                                                     This money would help
both sides of the aisle.                               dent Obama to a committee                                                                                       pay for home- and communi-
                                                       chairman.                                                                                                       ty-based services or nursing
                                                          Health and Human Ser-               Kathleen Sebelius and the                                                home care before Medicaid
Q: This closely mirrors AAHSA’s                        vices Secretary Kathleen               Obama administration have                                                payments kick in.
proposal, doesn’t it?                                  Sebelius called the CLASS              thrown their weight behind a
                                                                                                                                                                          The American Association
                                                                                              proposed new long-term care
A: Yes, but neither the AAHSA plan nor                 Act program “innovative”               disability insurance program.                                            of Homes and Services for the
the Senate HELP Committee plan                         in a letter to Edward Ken-                                                                                      Aging, which has been advo-
                                                       nedy (D-MA), the chair of              would help ensure availability                                           cating a similar insurance ben-
dictates what the exact dollar (daily
                                                       the Senate Committee on                of long-term care services and                                           efit, was the loudest provider
benefit) must be. Just the average ben-
                                                       Health, Education, Labor               supports for individuals and                                             group hailing the CLASS Act
efit should not be less than $50 per day.
                                                       and Pensions. She also said            families alike.                                                          endorsement. ■
It could be $50, for example, for two                  that passage of the measure               Under the Kennedy plan,                                               (For more, see article at left.)
ADLs and $100 for four or more ADLs.

Q: An
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