8:08:45 PM PDT - Wednesday, June 23rd, 2021

Zooming Into the Statehouse: Nursing Home Residents Use New Digital Skills to Push for Changes  

By Editor - Wed Jun 09, 2:51 am

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Patty Bausch isn’t a Medicaid expert, lawyer or medical professional. But she still thinks Connecticut legislators need her input when they consider bills affecting people like her — the roughly 18,000 residents who live in the state’s nursing homes. With help and encouragement from Connecticut’s Long Term Care Ombudsman Program, Bausch signed up and testified remotely before a legislative hearing this year. Nursing home residents who have been using digital technology to reach out to family and friends — after the covid pandemic led officials to end visitation last year — could also use it to connect with elected officials once the legislature moved to remote hearings. Speaking into an iPad provided by the ombudsman’s office, Bausch testified without ever leaving her room at the Newtown Rehabilitation & Health Care Center, where she has lived since having a stroke three years ago. The combination of a virtual legislature and nursing home residents equipped with internet access has created an opportunity most nursing home residents rarely have — to participate in their government up close and in real time. After Bausch signed in to watch the hearing, a committee clerk signaled when her turn was next

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Zooming Into the Statehouse: Nursing Home Residents Use New Digital Skills to Push for Changes

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