Today (April 27), Governor Baker and Secretary Sudders announced major financial support for community residential providers in health and human services. Our community was recognized as well with additional 15% funding for the months of May and June beyond the existing support. We appreciate the administration’s continued responsiveness to our community in the midst of this crisis.
The additional funding must go to four key areas that agencies have been focused on since March:
- Staffing costs – whether premiums paid as staff work in quarantine, overtime, extended staffing schedules to minimize virus spread and relief agency costs
- Infection control – such as deep cleaning, removal of garbage daily and other housekeeping
- Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) – including gloves, masks (shields when needed), gowns, etc., and
- Alternative housing for staff or residents – staff to not have to go home to family if working in quarantined house, and residents who may need to recover in alternative settings to avoid virus spread
Most agencies in our field already were on a spending trend much higher than reimbursements. EOHHS recognized this reality after reviewing several templates from disability and human service agencies.
We appreciate all of you who participated in our email/phone ask over the last week. It emphasized the urgent need for action, with over 6,000 letters sent to the legislature and Leadership.
Thank you to the Collaborative (trade associations) for its work on this key issue, including ADDP, our field’s trade. The legislature continues to communicate regularly with the Administration. We appreciate Speaker DeLeo and Senate President Spilka’s continued leadership.
The impact of the virus is wide and deep. Your advocacy helps decisionmakers prioritize among many different needs. Thank you, and thank you to Governor Baker!