The actions we take in senior living communities today will have immeasurable impact on the lives and welfare of hundreds of thousands of older Americans.

Relief And Resources Are Needed Now

Senior living caregivers are protecting the nation’s most vulnerable population and desperately need additional support. Our residents and caregivers are on the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis, and lives will be saved if we ensure they receive the relief and resources they need.

“It is unconscionable to see all references to long-term care stripped from the American Rescue Plan. Assisted living communities have been on the front lines of the pandemic, serving the population most vulnerable to COVID-19 for a full year with little to no federal relief or resources. Dedicated senior living staff care for millions of seniors who need help with activities of daily living, have chronic conditions, and who, according to the CDC, are up to 630 times more likely to die from COVID-19. Assisted living communities have been promised less than 2% of funding from the Provider Relief Fund, and have received only half of that to date. More than half of providers are operating at a loss, unsure if they can continue operations through the year. If communities close, workers will lose jobs, seniors will lose homes, and the financial burden on Medicare and Medicaid will skyrocket. With exorbitant costs and declining revenue due to COVID-19, they’re being left behind as other businesses at far less risk stand to receive billions in relief in the American Rescue Plan. Enough is enough. The federal government is abandoning and failing seniors and their caregivers in their greatest time of need. We need to see action from our legislators now—before it’s too late.”

– James Balda, President & CEO, Argentum

Over 90% of senior living providers applied for COVID-19 relief funding through the Provider Relief Fund and only 50% have received funding.

Half of providers indicated that unless financial conditions improve they will be forced to close communities in the coming months, an increase of 20% from a survey conducted in November 2020.

5 out of 10 senior living providers have experienced between 11%-30% in lost revenue as a result of COVID-19.

Source: Argentum survey of senior living provider members conducted in January 2021 representing approximately 1,000 senior living communities across the U.S.

Financial Relief

It is anticipated that the overall financial impact to senior living communities will be $15-20 billion. And they are expected to receive only 1.7%—or $3 billion—of the total Provider Relief Fund. Comparatively, other providers including hospitals and nursing homes, have received 85%—or $145 billion. Additional relief is needed to combat the effects of:

Increased Staffing Costs

Additional staff is needed to monitor for symptoms, implement enhanced infection control and cleaning protocols, screen employees, provide personal meal delivery, and support social distancing engagement activities. Caregivers are also often being offered “hero” pay for their heroic work.

Procuring Infection Prevention and Control Resources

Like other healthcare providers, senior living caregivers need access to PPE and other infection prevention and control resources for residents and staff. Gowns, gloves, face masks, face shields, goggles, respirators, cleaning supplies – all of these items are being depleted and are needed to properly protect residents and staff.

Lost Revenue

COVID-19 has required necessary visitation restrictions, limiting community move-ins and admissions. This has taken a toll on occupancy levels.

More than half of respondents reported that up to 20% of communities had not yet completed a vaccine clinic.

Source: Argentum survey of senior living provider members conducted in January 2021 representing approximately 1,000 senior living communities across the U.S.

Testing

Residents and caregivers need consistent access to effective and rapid testing in order to identify the presence of COVID-19. Communities are receiving an unpredictable number of tests and not enough tests to effectively test both staff and residents. Support for and guidance related to a national testing strategy is needed now, and relief funding is essential to support the administration of tests and the procurements of additional tests.

VACCINES

It is imperative that there’s a continued focus on prioritizing senior living community residents and staff for vaccination administration. These communities serve the population most vulnerable to the harmful effects of COVID-19, but many still await promised relief and life-saving vaccines. Financial relief will also help support vaccine preparation, monitoring, and staffing.

See what we’ve been advocating for from Congress and the Administration.

READ OUR LETTERS