Massachusetts Ranks Fourth Among States for Long-Term Services and Supports, According to New AARP Scorecard

Oct 4, 2023

AARP released their 2023 LTSS State Scorecard (the Scorecard), which is a compilation of state data and analysis based on a new vision of a high-performing state long-term services and supports (LTSS) system. Released every three years, the Scorecard uses data from a wide range of sources to describe how state LTSS systems are performing.

Massachusetts ranked fourth overall and in the top tier of states, according to the AARP Scorecard. The rankings and date for Massachusetts are available here.

The AARP Scorecard is based on an updated vision of high-performing LTSS systems. That vision includes the following elements:

  1. Affordability and Access. Consumers can easily find and afford services, with a meaningfully available safety net for those who cannot afford services. Safety net LTSS do not create disparities by income, race/ethnicity, or geography.
  2. Choice of Setting and Provider. A person- and family-centered approach allows for consumer choice and control of services (including self-directed models). A well-trained and adequately paid workforce is available to provide LTSS. Home and community-based services (HCBS) are widely available. Provider choice fosters equity, and consumers across communities have access to a range of culturally competent services and supports.
  3. Safety and Quality. Consumers are treated with respect and preferences are honored whenever possible, with services maximizing positive outcomes—including during and after care transitions. Residential facilities and HCBS settings are adequately staffed and are prepared for emergencies. Policy-, system-, and practice-level efforts reduce and/or prevent disparities in quality and outcomes.
  4. Support for Family Caregivers. Family caregivers are recognized and their needs are assessed and addressed, so they can receive the support they need to continue their essential roles. A robust LTSS workforce limits over-reliance on family caregivers. Family caregiver supports are culturally appropriate and accessible to all communities.
  5. Community Integration. Consumers have access to a range of services and supports that facilitate LTSS, including safe and affordable housing. Communities are age friendly and supported by state Multisector Plans for Aging. Policy and programming that facilitate livable communities also drive equitable communities.

The new vision from AARP of a high-performing LTSS system centers on equity, which therefore will serve as a basis for the Scorecard now and going forward. With significant input from our advisors, we developed the following definition with regard to equity in LTSS:

  • Equity in a high-performing LTSS system means that high performance is shared across all groups, defined by race/ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, disability status, and income, among others.
  • States where every measured group does well will score highly, and states in which some groups perform poorly will score lower.

The full report, state rankings and other information are available here.