by: Katie Davilia, KNWA/Ozarks First

Legislators in Little Rock passed new Medicaid limits Friday morning that will reduce funds given to the elderly and disabled in the natural state.

Starting in the new year those using Medicaid with ARChoices will be given less money by the state.

The ARchoices program currently provides help with daily living tasks and other needs for low-income disabled patients.

Those at the highest tier needing total assistance with moving, eating, and using the bathroom will have funding reduced to $30,000.

The lowest tier will now be capped at $5,000.

We spoke with Jerry Mitchell, Director Of The Area Agency On Aging in Northwest Arkansas who said while these cuts do help reduce state funding by millions, legislators should be focusing instead on helping those who desperately need the state’s help.

“We should take care of the disabled and elderly who do not have the means or the ability to help themselves when they are nursing home eligible and if they’re wanting to stay in their homes and can be supported I think we should make that effort,” said Director Of The Area Agency On Aging Northwest Arkansas, Jerry Mitchell.

We reached out to multiple assisted living centers in the area that said they are just being informed of the changes and are unable to comment on what this means for their residents at this time.