The nursing home industry’s two largest trade groups, the American Health Care Association (AHCA) and The Alliance for Quality Nursing Home Care, announced on Tuesday an agreement to combine their operations into one organization.
The merger is expected to be complete by July 1, and the new entity will retain the AHCA name. Details of the merger are still being worked out.
AHCA is the nation’s largest association of long-term and post-acute care providers with about 11,000 facilities as members of the organization. Some of its membership already overlaps with The Alliance, which represents around 1,200 facilities.
Similar goals between the two trade groups helped facilitate the agreement, along with economic pressures to the senior care industry.
“Today our profession stands at a crossroads. Faced with continued cuts and growing pressures on the systems that fund the care we provide, there was really only one choice—to band together to form one unified voice,” said Mark Parkinson, AHCA president and CEO. “The economic straits our profession faces necessitated this union. We have heard the call of our members, and we have responded.”
In the past two months, AHCA and its affiliated organization, the National Center for Assisted Living (NCAL), have seen record membership numbers, according to Parkinson.
“That record membership is because our members see a future teeming with promise,” he said in a statement. “But fulfilling that promise comes only when there is no equivocation in our message to Washington: We are ready to work with policymakers to improve the life of every individual in our centers. Our advocacy, regulatory, policy and quality efforts will be a force second to none.”
A unified approach for advocating on behalf of the senior care industry is the way to go, says Alan G. Rosenbloom, president of The Alliance.
“America’s long term and post-acute care provider community is an integral part of a rapidly changing, dynamic health care marketplace where quality and cost-efficiency will and should drive budget and policy decisions,” Rosenbloom said in a statement. “Through unity of purpose and mission, together we will continue to spotlight the fact we are a key part of the solution to Medicare and Medicaid cost containment and that the barrage of federal and state funding cuts are unsustainable.”
Written by Alyssa Gerace