Society leaders support workforce policies on Capitol Hill

Leaders advocate for more long-term care workers and access to care for seniors in rural America

Society leaders support workforce policies on Capitol Hill

The Evangelical Lutheran Good Samaritan Society – the nation’s largest provider of senior care and services – will share forward-looking solutions to address the long-term care industry’s workforce challenges with elected officials at the 2023 American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL) Congressional Briefing June 5-6 on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.

The invite-only congressional briefing provides AHCA/NCAL members the opportunity to personally connect with elected officials, gain insight on the latest legislative and policy developments and collaborate with other industry leaders.

Good Samaritan Society executive leadership participating in the briefing include:

  • Nate Schema, president and CEO
  • Aimee Middleton, vice president of operations
  • Wanda Harris, executive director of human resources
  • Tom Syverson, director of governmental affairs

As an integrated health system with Sanford Health, the largest rural health system in the country, the Good Samaritan Society has launched creative workforce solutions and made historic investments in its people since the pandemic, which include starting pay; bonuses; training and education; flexible scheduling options; benefits and well-being support. Despite these efforts, staffing challenges persist.

The Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) is expected to release a proposed minimum staffing mandate for skilled nursing facilities this month. Good Samaritan Society leaders will discuss what’s at stake with lawmakers on Capitol Hill and explore solutions to address ongoing workforce challenges.

“We foresee an access crisis unfolding if an unfunded, one-size-fits-all minimum staffing requirement is enforced in skilled nursing facilities, and unfortunately, our nation’s seniors will pay the price,” said Schema. “Seniors living in rural areas will be disproportionately impacted by any unfunded mandate. Approximately 70% of the Good Samaritan Society’s long-term care residents live in rural communities. We need ongoing, comprehensive investments to ensure our most vulnerable residents have access to the care they need and deserve no matter where they live. I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to advocate for our residents and team members and to discuss these key issues with legislators on Capitol Hill.”

Schema, along with AHCA/NCAL CEO Mark Parkinson and other industry representatives, will participate in a press conference on June 6 at 10:30 a.m. Eastern at the Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. There they will share their perspective on the current state of the long-term care industry and how Congress can deliver meaningful solutions to address the long-term care workforce crisis and protect access to care for seniors living in rural America.

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Posted In Company News, Corporate Services & Administration, Leadership in Health Care, People & Culture, Rural Health, Senior Services, Virtual Care