Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Medical Assistance Services
Board of Medical Assistance Services
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3/24/23  10:26 pm
Commenter: Sarah Blunkosky, parent and SEIU VA 512 Union Member

Please keep parents as paid care attendants as it’s always been difficult to hire and retain attenda

Parents as paid care attendants have provided consumers and the state of Virginia with invaluable services: they are fully vested in the well being and success of their kids, the consumers and are available in all emergencies, pandemics, and never let their consumer kids down; unlike non parent attendants who come and go thru consumers’ lives.  For so many consumers, especially with complex medical and behavioral needs like my child Josie; it is often difficult to find highly trained and patient care attendants who can stick around long enough (they often leave because they can’t access healthcare insurance and other benefits like worker’s compensation or even enough paid time off for their families). Parents as attendants not only provide safety and security, but they are also the most hard working, trusted, and flexible attendants. When consumers are hospitalized, parents are there and working without pay (no one gets hours when hospitalized). Imagine all the non parent care attendants who have to quit when they can’t work due to hospitalization? Also, parents as care attendants truly fulfill the whole needs and purpose of the role: to keep the consumer loved and supported at home and in communities. Please do not sabotage the success and care of consumers to letting go of their ability to be paid to further support their consumer kids. Please use your heart and also logic: parent care attendants are the best and most qualified folks for the jobs. Consumers deserve the absolute best: parent as care attendants. Thank you and please vote not only to support parents as care attendants, but also consider raising hours, pay, and increasing benefits. 

CommentID: 213524