COVID-19 has changed the way we do just about everything – from getting groceries, to dining out, playing recreational sports, how we teach and care for our kids, among many more. One of the most profound changes has been in the way our medical system functions under increased stress with new costs. Communities are suffering across the U.S., but one community has taken the hardest hit: the elderly and senior care industry.

Sadly, some parts of this community have been forgotten and overlooked by well-meaning policymakers. The relief provided through December’s legislative package was just a down payment. Unfortunately, the senior living-related provisions offered were woefully inadequate. More than half of assisted living providers are operating at a loss and indicate they may need to close their doors absent meaningful support in the coming months. If left unsupported, this strain will worsen and take a measurable toll on our seniors, their families and the dedicated workforce of caregiving heroes in Maine.

Of course, funding is only half the battle. COVID-19 has had a significant impact on America’s seniors and caregivers. These assisted living facilities need funding now. Lives and livelihoods are depending on it. Seniors, their families and the communities they call home are depending on Washington to be there for them in this time of need.

Mark Blier
Republican state representative
Buxton

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