New Report “Listening to Caregivers”
New Mexico Caregivers Coalition released their “2023 Listening to Caregivers” report today. The report details recommendations to help elected officials understand the complicated issues that caregivers face.
The Report focuses on caregivers within the Personal Care Services program and the Developmental Disabilities Waiver program which are New Mexico’s publicly-funded Medicaid programs, paid for with federal and state funds.
“The ‘2023 Listening to Caregivers’ report is directed to legislators and other elected officials as a Call to Action because they are responsible for adequately funding our systems of care,” says Adrienne Smith, President and CEO of New Mexico Caregivers Coalition. She noted payment adequacy means funding those workers caring for the most vulnerable in our state — persons who are elderly and those with disabilities.
The ten “2023 Listening to Caregivers” sessions were held in Alamogordo, Hobbs, Roswell, Portales, and Farmington New Mexico during the months of June and July 2023. Elected officials were invited to welcome their constituents and to listen to the challenges and solutions that caregivers presented.
One recommendation within the legislative Call to Action is the need to establish a state-financed long-term care system due to New Mexico’s aging population. The U.S. Census Bureau projects that our state will experience a rapid growth in the percentage of people aged 65 and older, placing New Mexico fourth in the nation for percentage of seniors by 2030.
A second recommendation is the creation of a statewide system that gives family caregivers the time off they need for physical, emotional, and mental well-being. Twenty-nine other states have a Lifespan Respite Care system and New Mexico should create such a system that serves caregivers across the lifespan in ways that are independent of geography, setting, or disability.