February 7, 2014
In This Issue
NASUAD Celebrates 50th Anniversary
*National I&R Support Center: Webinar--Immigration and Refugee Resources
*National I&R Support Center: Call For Prososals Due March 1
*ANVC: Congratulations to Clinton County Office on Aging
*CMS Seeks Comments on Proposed Rules for Medicare Parts C and D
*CMS: Medicare Beneficiaries Receive Preventive Services
*CMS: New Features on Medicaid.gov
*CMS: Webinar: Medicare Learning Series - Medicare Advantage Plans
*CFPB Bridges to Financial Security Project Releases Request for Proposals
*CFPB Requests Information for Upcoming Rules on Debt Collection
*CFPB: Medical Credit Cards Facts
*DVBIC: New Clinical Recommendations For Brain Injuries
*HHS Releases 2014 Poverty Guidelines
*NIA Releases Annual Alzheimer's Research Progress Report
*NIA: Researchers Seek Volunteers for Alzheimer's Clinical Trials
OMB Issues New Form for Voluntary Self-Identification of Disability Status
*SSA Improves Application Process for Disability Benefits
*SSA Requests Input to Improve Open Government Plan
*Congress: Education and Workforce Committee to Examine Older Americans Act
*AAHD: Health Care Expenditures Among Working-Age Adults With Physical Disabilities
*NCOA: Webinar: The Future of Brain Health
*NCIL: National Teleconference on Reauthorization of the Rehabilitation Act
*PHI Introduces Abuse Prevention Training to Indiana Nursing Homes
Job Announcements
*UnitedWay: 2-1-1 Day, 2014: United Way Worldwide
Just for Fun!
Funding Opportunities
Save the Date!

Celebrate NASUAD's 50th Anniversary at the 30th Annual National HCBS Conference
Click here to access NASUAD's online trainings

Quick Links
NASUAD Celebrates 50th Anniversary

The National Association of States United for Aging and Disabilities (NASUAD) is delighted to announce that this year marks their 50th Anniversary.


"We are excited to celebrate 50 years with NASUAD. NASUAD is a valuable resource to the states.  Their programs and research have allowed us to combine ideas and best practices which maximize services to older adults and people with disabilities within our state." Gloria Lawlah, NASUAD Board President.


During the past half century, states have seen many improvements for older adults and people with disabilities. In 1983 Congress created the first Home and Community-Based Medicaid Waiver, and NASUAD hosted the first Waiver Conference, now known as the National HCBS Conference.  In the 30 years since, both the HCBS waivers and the conference have expanded their scope and depth, covering more populations and services.


NASUAD is delighted to celebrate the 30th National Home and Community-Based Services Conference during our 50th Anniversary."The HCBS Conference is an integral part of our programming year. It is richly valuable for employees in our state to connect with their peers and learn about projects and research happening throughout the country.  I am thrilled to mark the 50th Anniversary with NASUAD at the 30th Annual HCBS Conference."  Lance Robertson, NASUAD Past Board President.


NASUAD looks forward to reflecting on the many accomplishments over the past half century with states, advocates and the aging and disability community throughout this year.


To read more, click here.

National Information and Referral Support Center


Webinar: Immigration and Refugee Resources for Older Adults and People with Disabilities
On February 11, 3:00-4:00 p.m. ET, join the National I&R Support Center, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) of the Department of Homeland Security; and the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) of the Department of Health and Human Services, for a very informative webinar on resources for assisting older/disabled immigrants. The following topics will be covered:
  • A brief overview  of the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), available services and national resources
  • Unauthorized Public Immigration Law (UPIL)
  • Naturalization, expediting of naturalization application and SSI benefits; Citizenship Resource Center and Local Citizenship info sessions   
  • Accommodations for in-person office visits
  • Fee waiver overview and eligibility requirements
  • Overview of medical services available to refugees: Refugee Medical Assistance, Medicaid, and benefits under the Affordable Care Act

Presentations will be followed by a question and answer session.


Instructions for joining the webinar

Click here to access the visual component of the webinar

For audio, you must also dial 888-346-3659, Passcode: 382574

Call for Proposals Due March 1: Aging and Disability Symposium at the AIRS Conference

The 2014 AIRS Conference will be held in Atlanta, GA this year from June 1-4. NASUAD's National I&R Support Center is coordinating the 2014 Aging and Disability Symposium, including a full-day, pre-conference intensive on Sunday, June 1, and 16 Aging and Disability Track workshop sessions. The Support Center is actively seeking presenters on topics such as Disability 101; Aging with lifelong disability; and Military & Veteran culture and mental health with aging/disability populations.


Proposals are due by March 1. Please contact Support Center Director, Sara Tribe, at STribe@nasuad.org , with questions or idea about possible presentation topics.



Aging Network Volunteer Collaborative


Got an Hour? Campaign Congratulates Clinton County Office of Aging, Plattsburgh, NY
The Clinton County Office of Aging CMS Medicare Rx Volunteer Initiative has won a $50 American Express gift card because they posted their volunteer opportunity in the Got an Hour? Give it Back Campaign through the VoluteerMatch.org website.
The Got an Hour? Give it Back Campaign connects potential volunteers with the aging network's opportunities to help seniors. Powered by VolunteerMatch.org, the Campaign's website  GiveItBacktoSeniors.org, provides downloadable materials, webinars, and a search tool to help your agency connect to prospective volunteers in your neighborhood.
Post your organization's volunteer opportunities on VolunteerMatch.org between now and March 1st, and you'll be automatically entered to win a $50 gift card. Contact Rachel Feldman at NASUAD with questions.
Click here to view contest details.
Click here for tips on how to post events. 
From the Administration 
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services

CMS Seeks Comments on Proposed Rules for Medicare Parts C and D

CMS seeks comments on a proposed rule related to Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D benefits in 2015. Proposed changes include revisions to the criteria determining protected classes of drugs, and to medication therapy management (MTM) eligibility that would allow more than half of Part D beneficiaries to access MTM services. 

Click here to read and comment on the rule.

Medicare Beneficiaries Receive Free Preventive Services

CMS released data showing more than 25 million Medicare beneficiaries receiving free preventive services in 2013. This data included more than 3.5 million who had an Annual Wellness Visit with their physician or other health care professional. Based on this data, individuals should be reminded of the preventive services that are available to them for free each year.


Click here to view utilization rates by states.


New Features on Medicaid.gov

The Medicaid.gov homepage has added a new feature entitled, State Highlights, that draws attention to the many positive steps states are taking to implement the Medicaid and CHIP provisions of the Affordable Care Act. The State Highlights intend to focus on a range of activities that contribute to high-performing Medicaid and CHIP programs, including strategies to streamline the enrollment of eligible individuals, efforts to ensure easy access to care, measures to help states achieve program efficiencies and other activities. The State Highlights will also tell the personal stories of people across the nation who are benefiting from Medicaid and CHIP coverage. Other enhancements to the Medicaid.gov website include a new top navigation bar that includes new tabs for Basic Health Program and About Us. CMS plans to add new highlights every couple of weeks going forward. 


Webinar: Medicare Learning Series - Medicare Advantage Plans 

The CMS National Training Program (NTP) provides support for partners and stakeholders, not-for-profit professionals and volunteers who work with seniors and people with disabilities, and others who help people make informed health care decisions. This month the NTP  will hold a webinar entitled,
Medicare Learning Series - Medicare Advantage Plans on February 11, 2014, 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. ET. The webinar will provide an overview of Medicare Advantage plans.


Click here to join the webinar.

For audio, you must also dial 877-267-1577, meeting number: 877-267-1577

Consumer Protection Financial Bureau

Bridges to Financial Security Project Releases Request for Proposals

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has released the Request for Proposals (RFP) for the Bridges to Financial Security project. The project is a multi-site demonstration plan which seeks to provide financial education services to individuals with disabilities who are transitioning into the workforce. The project also increases their financial literacy and helps them proactively take control of their finances at crucial moments in their lives. The deadline for submitting proposals and any Past Performance Questionnaires is on February 28, 2014, 4:00 p.m. ET. Applicants should carefully review the solicitation document and follow the instructions outlined within. Late proposals will not be accepted.


Click here to view the RFP.
Contact Nicholas.Olson@cfpb.gov and Matthew.Chmielewski@cfpb.gov to submit proposals.


Requests Information for Upcoming Rules on Debt Collection

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) requests information from older adult consumers and advocates on potential problems in the debt collection market, especially as they affect older consumers. Their Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) is collecting information on a wide array of debt-collection topics through February 28, 2014. The CFPB is particularly interested in the experiences of people with disabilities, family members contacted by debt collectors, and potential rules for when debt-collection contact should be allowed. 


Click here to submit comments before February 28, 2014. 

Medical Credit Cards Facts 


The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has released information on medical credit cards. Health providers offer these credit cards to patients but consumers do not always get the real facts before signing up and may get stuck paying unexpected fees.

Click here to get the facts about deferred interest rate credit cards.

Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center
New Clinical Recommendations For Brain Injuries

The Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center has released new clinical recommendations to help service members who have sustained a mild traumatic brain injury, otherwise known as concussion, to progressively return to their normal activities following their injury.


Click here to view the recommendations.

Health and Human Services
HHS Releases 2014 Poverty Guidelines

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released the new Federal Poverty Levels (FPLs) for 2014. The annual poverty rate is set at $11,670 for an individual and $15,730 for a married couple, with slightly higher rates in Alaska and Hawaii. The slight increase in 2014 means more people may now be eligible for programs such as Extra Help and the Medicare Savings Programs, which use the FPL as a baseline for determining income eligibility.


Click here to review the guidelines.


National Institute on Aging

NIA Releases Annual Alzheimer's Research Progress Report

The National Institute of Aging (NIA) released the annual Alzheimer's Research Progress Report which highlights recent progress in Alzheimer's disease research. The report also discusses the National Plan to Address Alzheimer's Disease, describes new investments and research priorities, and summarizes research in several areas including:

  • risk factors for cognitive decline and dementia advances in detecting Alzheimer's disease
  • potential new therapies to treat, delay, or prevent Alzheimer's
  • caregiving
  • gender and racial differences in the impact of Alzheimer's

Click here to view the report.

Click here to view a video introduction by NIA Director Dr. Richard Hodes, a primer on Alzheimer's disease and the brain, tables listing NIA-funded clinical trials, and videos that further explain critical areas of study.

Researchers Seek Volunteers for Alzheimer's Clinical Trials

Volunteers are needed for clinical trials and studies recently added to the National Institute on Aging (NIA) listing. Volunteers with normal cognition, mild cognitive impairment, and Alzheimer's disease should contact the study coordinator in their area to learn about participating. A few examples of ongoing studies include:
  • Alzheimer's Prevention Through Exercise (Kansas City, KS)
  • Physical Activity Levels and Brain Structure in Mild Cognitive Impairment (Los Angeles, CA)
  •  Effects of Anesthesia on Cognition and Alzheimer's Disease Biomarkers (Durham, NC)
  • Reducing Agitation in People with Dementia (Baltimore, MD)
  • MK-8931 for Amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment (multiple sites)

Click here to sign up with the Alzheimer's Prevention Registry.

Click here for more information about the Alzheimer's Prevention Registry.
Click here for more information about these and other Alzheimer's clinical trials.  

Contact the NIA Alzheimer's Disease Education and Referral (ADEAR) Center at 1-800-438-4380 or adear@nia.nih.gov

Contact 1-888-786-7259 for information and updates about participating in future Alzheimer's prevention trials. Anyone age 18 and older can join.   

Office of Management and Budget

OMB Issues New Form for Voluntary Self-Identification of Disability Status

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved the revised form for voluntary self-identification of disability status by applicants and employees with disabilities who work for organizations covered by Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act. Section 503 prohibits federal contractors and subcontractors from engaging in employment discrimination against individuals with disabilities, and requires various affirmative action practices in recruitment, hiring, promotion, and retention of protected individuals. The new form also includes a reasonable accommodation notice and provides examples of types of disabilities to assist applicants and employees in completing it.


Click here to view the Voluntary Self-Identification of Disability form.
Click here to learn about the Section 503 regulations.

Social Security Administration

SSA Improves Application Process for Disability Benefits

The Social Security Administration (SSA) combined the Social Security disability benefits application and the adult disability report to allow people with disabilities to apply for disability benefits than completing the forms separately. This new streamlined process puts both forms together in one place. The application is for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits only.


Click here for more information on this new process.

Click here to learn more about applying for Supplemental Security Income benefits.

SSA Requests Input to Improve Open Government Plan  

The Social Security Administration (SSA) is revising their Open Government Plan and requests input on the actions the agency should take to build greater transparency, participation and collaboration into their processes. The Office of Open Government develops and implements a plan outlining the agency's open government goals, objectives and supporting activities. 


Click here to view the current plan. 

Click here to view the accomplishments.     

Click here to share and respond to ideas. 

Contact open.government@ssa.gov with ideas. 

From Congress

Education and Workforce Committee to Examine Older Americans Act  

On Tuesday, February 11 at 10:00 a.m., the Subcommittee on Higher Education and Workforce Training, chaired by Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC), will hold a hearing entitled, "Serving Seniors Through the Older Americans Act." The hearing will provide members an opportunity to examine the programs and services provided under OAA and discuss priorities for reauthorization.


The following people will be presenting testimony:


Ms. Carol V. O'Shaughnessy
Principal Policy Analyst
National Health Policy Forum


Ms. Lynn Kellogg
Chief Executive Officer
Region IV Area Agency on Aging


Dr. Yanira Cruz
President and CEO
National Hispanic Council on Aging   


Ms. Denise Niese
Executive Director
Wood County Committee on Aging, Inc. 


To read more information about the hearing, click here. 

To view a live webcast of the hearing on February 11th, click here. 


From Other Organizations
American Association on Health and Disability

Disability and Health Journal Article on Health Care Expenditures Among Working-Age Adults With Physical Disabilities

The Disability and Health Journal, the official journal of the American Association on Health and Disability (AAHD), released an article entitled, Health Care Expenditures Among Working-Age Adults With Physical Disabilities: Variations by Disability Spans. The article reports that health spending is more than twice as much for people with persistent disabilities than for those whose disabilities are temporary.



Click here to view the article.


National Council on Aging
Webinar: The Future of Brain Health

NCOA is holding a free webinar, entitled, The future of Brain Health on February 20, 2014. 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. ET. The webinar will explore brain health, a top health concern for older adults, and what role it can play in programs and services for older adults.  

Click here t
o register for the webinar.

National Council on Independent Living
National Teleconference on Reauthorization of the Rehabilitation Act
The National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) is holding a teleconference on Reauthorization of the Rehabilitation Act on February 18, 2014, 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. ET. The teleconference will discuss ways to mobilize advocates to pass Rehabilitation Act, S.1356, on the Senate floor and create a new Independent Living Administration.

Click here t
o register for the teleconference.

Click here to get talking points and the latest updates on the Rehabilitation Act. 


PHI Introduces Abuse Prevention Training to Indiana Nursing Homes

PHI is working with the Indiana State Department of Health
to reduce the occurrence of adult abuse, mistreatment, neglect, and misappropriation in the state's nursing homes. PHI Organizational Change Consultant Cean Eppelheimer and Cathy Macomber, assistant professor of social work at Saginaw Valley State University, led a train-the-trainer session to prepare key long-term care leaders to teach the Training to Prevent Adult Abuse and Neglect (TPAAN) curriculum.

The goal is to use this training as the foundation for Indiana's abuse prevention initiative.

To learn more about, click here. 

Job Announcements 
NRCPDS: Executive Director
The Boston College Graduate School of Social Work is seeking a new Executive Director (grant-funded) for the National Resource Center for Participant-Directed Services (NRCPDS). The NRCPDS Executive Director will be responsible for overseeing an annual operating budget that currently equals $2.1M, comprising multiple grants, contracts, and special revenue projects. This position will be responsible for developing, fostering, and maintaining relationships with funders and key stakeholders, and overseeing all Center projects and research. The NRCPDS Executive Director will have overall responsibility for strategic planning, approving budgets, providing day-to-day leadership and supervision to approximately 15 locally-based and remote staff as well as several consultants, making final employment decision recommendations, and conducting evaluations. The Executive Director will ensure that the Center operates and conducts activities consistent with the Boston College mission, policies, and procedures.

Click here for more information and application.

2-1-1 Day, 2014: United Way Worldwide 

February 11 is 2-1-1 Day in recognition of the free, user-friendly phone number that serves 90% of America's population, and connects some 16 million people a year to critical resources, information and services. 2-1-1, a phone number, was launched by United Way almost 20 years ago as a free way to connect people to essential community resources. Today, 2-1-1 serves more than 283 million Americans, more than 90% of the U.S. population, in all 50 states, plus Washington DC and Puerto Rico. In 2012, almost 16 million people called 2-1-1 in the U.S. about job training, employment, food pantries, help for an aging parent, addiction prevention programs, affordable housing options, support groups and volunteer opportunities.


To help spread the word about 2-1-1 Day, United Way Worldwide compiled several resources, including a press release and social media materials that can be modified to particular locales and networks. The intent of the social media messages is not just to promote 2-1-1, but also to engage partners, share data, and connect people to online resources and videos.

Just for Fun!
Enjoy These Fun Feature Videos


Residents of the Asbury Methodist Village in Gaithersburg, MD decide age isn't going to hold them back from going down a mountain.

View the video here.


View this fun Microsoft Superbowl commercial celebrating people using Microsoft technology to break barriers and inspire us all.

View the video here.

Funding Opportunities
The Health Brain Initiative Grant

Full Title: The Healthy Brain Initiative: The Public Health Road Map for State and National Partnerships, 2013 - 2018

Eligible Applicants: All state and territorial health departments

Funding Level: $90,000
Close Date: March 14, 2014

Funding Opportunity Number: RFA #HA2014A

CFDA Number: N/A 


Description:The purpose of the healthy brain initiative grant is to improve partnerships with the Aging Network, including State Units on Aging by addressing cognitive health or impairment, including Alzheimer's disease, and support the needs of care partners.


Click here for more information on this grant opportunity, and to apply.