Just last week I posted something on Facebook on behalf of the Frederick Memorial Nursing Home. The contents of that I’ll get to in just a few lines but first I need to pause so we can all laugh for a minute.
The header for the post was “Issue Alert” along with a plea to take action. I wrote it, added the information and posted it. A few minutes later I looked at it and laughed, for a while. Isn’t every post we put on Facebook or any social media really just an “issue alert”? It’s not always a bad issue but still, it is what it is. I hope this strikes you as funny as it did me, if not, then you are probably rolling your eyes thinking about the “issue alert” you could post about the crazy Chamber lady. Either way, be kind with your “issue alerts” today and every day.
Now back to the serious stuff. The information I received from MNC is regarding the Legislative special session and what cuts might be issued in order to fill the gap in the state budget crisis. Yes, it is a crisis. These cuts affect many things throughout the state, not all cuts will affect each and every one of us but as citizens of this state, we must be aware of them all.
The one sent to me is regarding Medicaid cuts. It is feared that “the OK Health Care Authority is preparing to slash funding for Medicaid programs and providers by 9 percent, beginning December 1, 2017”. This is a response to the failure to fully fund health care services in Oklahoma. This cut would further hurt our very own facility in Frederick as well as hundreds across the state in addition to a variety of other healthcare providers even those at Frederick Memorial Clinic.
The letter goes on to say that so far Oklahoma nursing homes have been cut $93M annually with 116 nursing facilities in Oklahoma closing. This additional 9 percent could potentially cause the closure of half those remaining in the state. I don’t know about you but we cannot take anymore blows to healthcare in Frederick Oklahoma. We have too many good people working hard to resurrect services while sustaining others, I do not want their hard work to be in vain because our state cannot fund vital services.
If you have paid any bit of attention to the news lately you will know that healthcare is not the only vital service being beat up by the state budget failure. It is our duty as voters and citizens of this state to speak out for or against those things that are necessary. It is our duty to reach out to our elected officials and let them know our wishes as their constituents. Just posting “issue alerts” on social media is not enough. They may be fighting for the same things we are but if they can argue that x-number of voters called their office to express an interest, it might sway an official from another district. Action speaks so much louder than the typed word.
I encourage us all to take part in the system that was set up so many hundreds of years ago to represent us all. It is our homes, our education and our future that are at stake.
Don’t forget: Be Kind. Be Heard. Be Local.
Felisha Crawford, Executive Director