Florida's Advocate for Long Term Care Providers and the Elders They Serve

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FHCA Applauds Governor DeSantis for Strong Investment in Florida’s Nursing Centers

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Florida Health Care Association (FHCA) today commended Governor Ron DeSantis for signing the Focus on Florida’s Future Budget for Fiscal Year 2024-25, which includes a significant Medicaid funding increase to help nursing centers continue advancing quality care through a strengthened workforce.

The state budget provides an 8% increase ($247.8 million) in Medicaid funding, amounting to nearly $470,000 per center, per year to support the state’s nursing centers with meeting the growing demand for qualified caregivers and the needs of Florida’s vulnerable seniors and people with disabilities.

“Once again, Governor DeSantis has shown his commitment to Florida’s seniors and the people who care for them,” said FHCA Chief Executive Officer Emmett Reed. “This meaningful investment in Florida’s nursing centers reflects the Governor’s unwavering leadership and vision for the future as we prepare for a significant increase in Florida’s senior population over the next decade.”

“We are deeply grateful to the Governor and the Legislature for paving the way so that Florida can continue to be the gold standard in delivering high-quality care to our state’s seniors today and into the future,” continued Reed. 
Florida will add a quarter-million additional residents each year through 2030, and many of these new residents – 57% of them – will be aged 60 and older. As a result, long term care employers will need to fill 235,000 job openings in direct care from 2020 to 2030, including 25,000 new jobs to meet rising demand, and another 210,000 job openings to replace workers who leave the labor force or transfer to new occupations.
Meanwhile, Florida’s nursing centers are also facing a recently approved federal staffing mandate that will create detrimental impacts, as it will undermine Florida's existing staffing standards and the progress being made to enhance access to high-quality care for the state's growing aging population. New data shows that nearly 75 percent of Florida’s nursing centers cannot currently meet the one-size-fits-all requirements and would need to hire over 3,800 additional nurses and nurses’ aides to meet the requirements, costing facilities an additional $226 million per year.
Despite long-term care’s labor challenges, Florida continues to outpace the nation in the standard of care provided to seniors and people with disabilities, as shown on FHCA's Long Term Care Quality Dashboard.


June 12, 2024

Kristen Knapp, APR
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