Home alone
Adult health center cuts devastate elderly, disabled

About this project

State budget cuts may force thousands of poor elderly and disabled Californians to lose access to the day centers where they receive meals, therapy and medical care, as well as companionship and a sense of community. The state’s elimination of the Medi-Cal Adult Day Health Care (ADHC) benefit – slated for Dec. 1 – could endanger some of California’s frailest individuals, people who suffer from multiple disabilities including dementia, incontinence, paralysis and traumatic brain injury. As the centers are forced to close, advocates say, many will be left home alone and at high risk of landing in emergency rooms and nursing homes. Los Angeles County – especially its many ethnic minority communities –will be hit hardest by the closures. According to state data, the county is home to more than 60 percent of the program’s 38,000 enrollees statewide.


A place where elderly find comfort, community

One month from now, thousands of poor elderly and disabled Californians will likely lose access to the day centers where they receive meals, therapy and medical care, as well as companionship and a sense of community.

Adult health center closure will send seniors, employees down unknown path

Sandy Tang opened the Good Health Adult Day Healthcare Center (ADHC) in 2002 so her then 85-year-old mother would have a place to go for all the medical help she needed.

Mary Sanchez: I Only Have Two Hands

Mary Sanchez, 73, is her husband's primary caregiver. Her husband, Armando Sanchez, suffered a stroke 11 years ago and was diagnosed with dementia two years after that. She tries to keep him healthy.

Nina Nolcox: A Model That Works

Nina Nolcox opened the doors to Graceful Senescence Adult Day Health Care Center in 2006 in South Los Angeles. The CEO used to work as a registered nurse in skilled nursing facilities and hospitals.

Opinions, observations and feelings about the prospective closure of up to 300 Adult Day Health Care Centers across the state

“This has never been done before in any state in the United States. We are the only state that has completely shut down an entire adult day health care community for Medicaid patients.

Tears flow as Alhambra health center seniors contemplate its closing

Hui is terrified that she may soon have to go to the bathroom on her own. For more than a decade, the 80-year-old woman, who is debilitated from a stroke, has spent part of her days at an adult day health care center in Alhambra. There, Hui...

Adult Day Health Care system imperfect but needed

As legislators in Sacramento struggle to balance California’s budget, tough decisions are being made regarding which services to either fund, curtail or eliminate all together. As a result of these difficult budgetary decisions, one program which...

Budget cuts force AltaMed to transition senior care centers

Each week, life-long El Sereno resident Alejandro Alvarez and his 73-year-old mother, Maria Alvarez, look forward to the arrival of a handicapped-equipped shuttle van that will free them for a short while from the confines of their mundane lives....

Employees worry about elderly, jobs in bleak future for Adult Day Health Care

Zarine Tarayan, program director of Felices Dias (Happy Days), Adult Day Health Care Center in South Los Angeles, is not happy these days.

Riesgo en salud y pérdidas de empleos a consecuencia de los recortes en Medi-Cal en Ca.

Los Ángeles, Ca.- Con el cierre de los Centros de los Servicios del Cuidado de la Salud Diaria en California (ADHC) a partir del 1 de  diciembre, no sólo más de 35 mil personas de la tercera edad serán afectadas en cuestión de salud, sino más

Alhambra's elderly and disabled keep their center — for now

The announcement was made in Mandarin, Cantonese, and Vietnamese to scores of seniors and severely disabled adults terrified about how they would soon spend their days.

Blog Posts

A Partnership With Ethnic Media on Senior Health Stories

At first it seemed pretty improbable. How could six, seven, eight different ethnic media outlets (some publishing in other languages) work together on one story? What one story would be compelling enough to interest them? And how would all the...

Editorial Posts

Time to step up and help our neighbors

In Today's edition, EGP is featuring two stories detailing the potentially devastating effect the decision by Gov. Jerry Brown and state legislators to eliminate the state-funded Adult Day Health Care program will have on thousands of California’s...


Lauren M. Whaley

Lauren M. Whaley

Lauren M. Whaley is a photographer, radio producer and print reporter specializing in topics related to mental illness, reproductive health care and health disparities. She is also a childbirth photographer.

This year, she is working on a series about how low-income parents access care for perinatal mental illnesses. The project is funded by the Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism.

Whaley was a 2016-17 Knight Science Journalism Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute for Technology.

Her work has been recognized by the Association of Health Care Journalists, the Scripps Howard Foundation and the Public Radio Exchange (PRX) STEM story project. She has contributed radio, video, photography and written stories to KQED Public Radio, Southern California Public Radio, the San Jose Mercury News, the New York Times and other media outlets. For six years, I worked as the Center for Health Reporting's multimedia journalist, based in Los Angeles. She is a past president of the national organization Journalism and Women Symposium (JAWS) and spent her early 20s leading canoe expeditions for young women, including a solo-led 45-trip in the Canadian Arctic. 

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