Hundreds of kupuna rallied at the state capitol Monday to raise awareness of the need to fund Kupuna Care.
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They wore bright orange shirts and came from all over the island asking for lawmakers to not only fund kupuna care, but to increase the program's funding.
Kupuna Care is a state funded program that provides basic services to frail elderly who live at home but need assistance. Lanakila Meals on Wheels Director Lyn Moku says the funding has remained flat since 2002 while Hawaii's senior population has increased by 30 percent.
"We come here every year to ask for Kupuna Care funding. This year it's a little different. We need that funding for all seniors and we need to make sure that it includes people on Medicaid," said Moku.
Moku says seniors on Medicaid were recently deemed ineligible for Kupuna Care services by the Executive Office on Aging. Moku also says the eligibility for Kupuna Care and Medicaid are different, and there are services Kupuna Care offers that are not covered by Medicaid.
There are bills working their way through the legislature to make sure the services are available to all who need it.