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Arkansas Ranks 37th Overall in Performance on Long-Term Services and Supports

Arkansas ranks 37th overall among the 50 states and District of Columbia in the delivery of long-term services and supports (LTSS) to older adults and people with disabilities, according to a Scorecard developed by AARP’s Public Policy Institute and released during the 2011 Arkansas Long-Term Care Policy Summit.

See Also: Raising Expectations: A State Scorecard on Long-Term Services and Supports for Older Adults, People with Physical Disabilities, and Family Caregivers

The report, was developed by AARP’s Public Policy Institute, The Commonwealth Fund and the SCAN Foundation. The Scorecard is the first report of its kind: a multi-dimensional approach to measure state-level performance of long-term services and supports systems that provide assistance to older people, adults with disabilities, and family caregivers.

The Scorecard shows that all states need to vastly improve in areas including home care, assisted living, nursing home care, and supports for family caregivers, and more efficiently spend the substantial funds they currently allocate to LTSS. The report examines four key dimensions of state LTSS system performance: affordability and access; choice of setting and provider; quality of life and quality of care; and support for family caregivers. It assesses each state’s performance as a whole and on 25 individual indicators, some of which were measured for the first time.

With an overall ranking of 37th, Arkansas ranked 32nd in affordability and access; 26th in choice of setting and provider; 41st in quality of life and quality of care; and 22nd in support for family caregivers. A detailed summary of Arkansas’ performance on individual indicators is attached.
Dr. Susan Reinhard, Senior Vice President for Public Policy at AARP led a panel discussion on the Scorecard during the Long-Term Care Policy Summit. The Summit was co-sponsored by AARP Arkansas and the Arkansas Department of Human Services Division of Aging and Adult Services. Dr. Reinhard was interviewed for a story on the Scorecard by Today’s THV. The story and video are available online.

“This extensive study of long-term care services and supports throughout the nation shows that Arkansas ranks relatively well in certain areas and has room for improvement in others,” said Maria Reynolds-Diaz, State Director of AARP Arkansas. “AARP looks forward to collaborating with both the public and private sectors in our state to help make Arkansas a better place for people to live and age with dignity in their own homes and communities.”

The Scorecard finds that if all states reached levels currently achieved by leading states, the study finds, the United States could realize significant gains in health, better care experiences and potentially lower costs.

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