Continuum Pediatric Nursing was founded over 25 years ago on the belief that children in long-term care facilities would benefit greatly from highly skilled in-home nursing. The stage was set for this revolution in care by the establishment of the Katie Beckett waiver ten years before Continuum’s founding.
Prior to the Katie Beckett waiver, if a child with significant medical needs received treatment at home, all of the financial resources of the parents would be “deemed” as the income of the child for the purposes of determining Medicaid eligibility. Only after a hospitalization lasting more than thirty days would the parents’ income no longer be deemed to the child, allowing the child to then qualify for Medicaid coverage. The effect was that many families, unable to afford home treatment, kept their children in costly hospital or long-term care settings in order to meet the Medicaid 30-day requirement. Katie Beckett waivers allowed Medicaid to cover medical services for children in the home, regardless of the parents’ income.
In the ensuing years, technological advancements not only resulted in more and more critically ill children surviving infancy, but also enabled their care outside of a medical facility. Continuum was at the forefront of a nationwide movement that recognized that the resources and technology had evolved to enable these children to live a fuller life, surrounded by the nurturing support of family and familiar surroundings. To us this is not just a quality of life issue and a cost savings, it is a significant component of care, vital to their long-term emotional and physical well-being.