Cunningham introduces legislation to benefit seniors

State Sen. Bill Cunningham (D-18th) recently introduced a measure to make home services more available and affordable in order to help older adults and people with disabilities continue to live in their own homes.

“Older adults should have every opportunity to live in their own homes as long as possible,” said Cunningham, “and people with disabilities deserve to live independently whenever possible.”

Cunningham’s legislation would allow home-care aides, rather than nurses, to perform certain basic tasks that don’t require medical expertise. For example, they would be allowed to bathe clients, apply topical prescription ointments, assist with eating and apply prescription hair treatments.

Senate Bill 221 is currently in the Senate Committee on Assignments.

Cunningham said he respects the role that nurses and other medical professionals play in caring for older adults and people with disabilities, but the measure is necessary to ensure that people aren’t being unnecessarily forced to transition to nursing homes because they can’t afford nurse visits or can’t locate nursing providers who offer services in a client’s home.

“These home-care aides are in their clients’ homes weekly, sometimes daily,” Cunningham said. “They build strong relationships and truly get to know their clients’ needs. If their clients are comfortable with them helping with these tasks, they should be able to.”

via The Beverly Review

March 3, 2021 at 07:11AM

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