Lawsuit Filed as Two More ADHC Centers Close

It will not be a good day today at the Robertson Adult Day Health Care Center in Sacramento.

“It’s our last day. It’s the day we’re locking our doors,” said Lyndsey Roush, program director at Robertson.

Robertson will be the sixth ADHC center to shut down since March, and a seventh center is expected to follow suit, with an announcement coming as soon as today.

Disability Rights California yesterday filed a lawsuit to halt the planned elimination of the current ADHC program. This gets a little complicated, but the Legislature put some funding ($85 million) in the budget to create a new ADHC program, about half the size of the current one — and to do that, the state decided it had to eliminate the current version, and apply for a federal waiver to start a new, lower-cost one.

Monday, the Legislature is expected to vote on a budget that includes that $85 million for a new ADHC program. The governor may or may not veto.

Disability Rights’ lawsuit says the elimination of ADHC is illegal in the first place and wants the original program — with its original funding — back.

At the Robertson Center in Sacramento, all Roush knows is that about 90 people will be scrambling to find services.

“It’s ridiculously sad,” Roush said. “I’m having a really hard time even imagining how people are going to deal with this.”

These ADHC closures may be just the beginning, she said, if the program is eliminated as scheduled on Sept. 1.

“Our center is going to be one small drop in the bucket of what California will experience,” Roush said.

The idea of adult day health care is to provide nursing home services during the day that allow people to return to their homes at night. It was designed as a money-saving idea, but it has become a much more satisfying way to get care, Roush said.

“The hardest part is calling the families and telling them the center is closing,” Roush said. “The options for them are so bleak. I can tell you, there’s a lot of broken hearts, and people in really bad situations right now.

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