A Message From Focused Care's Founder

Mark McKenzie, CEO

June Founder’s Message: Preparation, Engagement, Staying the Course

June Founder’s Message

Preparation, Engagement, Staying the Course


The 2023 session of the Texas state legislature ended in May with a significant development: state legislators recognized the critical role skilled nursing plays in the health care continuum – they saw our value.

That acknowledgment doesn’t translate into full funding of the Medicaid rate. What it did was essentially extend funding – but for one month- before September when the fiscal year kicks in and the Medicaid rate is increased.

You could call it an extension of the funds previously marked under the Public Health Emergency (PHE) declaration – of course, it’s more complicated than that – but one very obvious fact rings true:

If you engaged in advocacy by calling your representatives and senators and writing letters urging them to fund skilled nursing care – then you can be proud to take credit for this lifeline thrown to our sector.

This extension of funds that gets us to September is critical. Without it, we would have seen multiple Texas long term care companies close their doors. Imagine the dramatic loss of access to skilled nursing care if that happened. Too many Texas seniors would be without a nearby skilled nursing community – which creates unnecessary hardship for them and their family members. It would have been a tragic result – but it was avoided.

As we all are aware, residents receiving care from skilled nursing are largely Medicaid recipients, with Medicare making up nearly the rest and private pay representing a low single digit. That has been the financial reality of long term care for decades upon decades. And as long as that remains, we are beholden to our state legislature to fund the Medicaid rate – which will be closer to the amount we calculate to cover the cost of care than it was at the beginning of the legislative session. We are supportive of our legislative leaders who advocated for us to the end.

They heard you – their constituents – and they heard us as a community of individuals dedicated to caring for Texas’ most vulnerable.

I am proud to be working with you to preserve our ability as long term care providers to care for our residents, improve their health outcomes and make their lives meaningful while they are with us.

Advocacy works and don’t forget – you were also the voice for those who depend on you every day. But I think you knew that.  Thank you.


Mark McKenzie

Founder & CEO