June 27, 2014
In This Issue
*NASUAD Announces State Service Retirements
*ACL: Building Respect for LGBT Older Adults
*ACL: Webinar: By the Numbers: New CMS Data Resources on Chronic Conditions
*DOL Announces Funding to Improve Employment Opportunities for Youth with Disabilities
*DOL: New FAQs Posted to Address Contractors' Concerns by OFCCP
*DOL: Pride Month Blog Sheds Light on Similarities Between LGBTQ and Disability Communities
*HHS Offers Evidence-based Materials for Conversations About Brain Health
*MedPAC Releases June 2014 Report the Congress
*SSA Releases New Instructions for Processing Benefits Claims Based on Same-Sex Marriages
*Congress: Senator Calls For Expansion of Community-Based Services
*Oregon Releases Report Examining Year 1 of Medicaid Demonstration
*AARP Releases LTSS Scorecard
*CHCS: Brief on Strategies to Facilitate Managed Care Implementation for Medicare-Medicaid Enrollees
*LEAD: Webinar: Olmstead Anniversary
*MPR: Impacts of Waiting Periods for Home and Community-Based Services
*SCAN: TSF Annual Report
*June Observances
*Friday Updates Archive

Save the Date! 

30th Annual National HCBS Conference

September 15-18, 2014 

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NASUAD Announces State Service Retirements

This week, the National Association of States United for Aging and Disabilities (NASUAD) announced the retirement of four Commissioners/Directors from State Service. These four officials include:

  • Commissioner Edith Prague of Connecticut, as of June 1, 2014. Commissioner Prague spent more than 30 years in state government, championing the rights of older adults as a state legislator and serving as Commissioner on Aging under two Governors.  Prague spent eight years in the state House of Representatives and represented the residents of Connecticut's 19th Senatorial District from 1994-2012. In 1990, was appointed Commissioner of Aging by then-Gov. Lowell Weicker.  In March 2013, Prague was again appointed to head the Department, by current Gov. Dan Malloy.  
  • Director William Love of Delaware, as of May 30, 2014.  Prior to joining DSAAPD in August 2010, Director Love spent nine years in the non-profit sector, where he advocated on behalf of older adults and Delawareans with disabilities.  Earlier in his career, Love held several positions within the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services, including as Director of the Division of Developmental Disabilities Services and Director of the Division of Management Services. 
  • Director Catherine Taylor of Rhode Island, as of June 20, 2014. Catherine Taylor stepped down from her post as Director of the Rhode Island Department of Elderly Affairs to enter the state's 2014 Lt. Governor's race.   Taylor previously served as a congressional staffer for 20 years, both in Washington, D.C. and Rhode Island, under current Gov. Lincoln Chafee and his late father, Sen.  John Chafee.   In 2007, she co-founded Lang Taylor, Ltd., a public affairs political consulting firm in Providence, RI.  In 2010, Taylor ran for Rhode Island Secretary of State, and nearly defeated her incumbent opponent, receiving 49.4% of the vote.   
  • Director Jan Engan of North Dakota, as of July 18, 2014. Jan Engan announced her upcoming departure from North Dakota's Human Services Department, where she has served as Director of the Adults and Aging Services Division since 2011.  Prior to joining the Department, Engan worked for the Area Agency on Aging in Arizona as the Director for Independent Living services, and was involved in the Senior Community Services Employment Program.  She has also served as the Executive Director of the Older Alaskans Program in Anchorage, Alaska, and managed the Senior Companion Program for Lutheran Social Services in North Dakota.  After 35 years in the aging network, Engan will join the Alaska Family Services Child Care Assistance Program as a Program Manager later this summer. 

NASUAD wishes them a wonderful and well-deserved retirement. We thank them for all that they have done for seniors, persons with disabilities and their caregivers throughout their career. Please join in wishing these officials well in their next adventure of retirement.

Registration Open for 30th Annual HCBS Conference

Don't forget to register for  the 30th Annual National Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Conference from September 15-18, 2014 in Arlington, VA. Each year this Conference hits capacity, so reserve your space soon!

This conference showcases innovative national, federal, state and local delivery and policy developments vital for assuring that Americans of all ages and abilities receive the highest quality community living supports, care, and services possible. 


This year, NASUAD is celebrating 50 years of working with state aging and disability agencies, which will include a gala dinner celebration at the conference.


Click here to register for the conference.

From the Administration
Administration for Community Living

Building Respect for LGBT Older Adults Tool 

The Administration for Community Living (ACL) and Administration on Aging have developed a new online learning tool "Building Respect for LGBT OLder Adults". The training tool is intended for long term care and other aging service providers as an introduction to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) aging. The trainings are split up into six modules, each approximately 10 minutes long. This tool is a first step in learning about how to create safe, welcoming and inclusive services for LGBT older adults.


Click here to view the tool.

Webinar: By the Numbers: New CMS Data Resources on Chronic Conditions

The Administration for Community Living (ACL) is holding a webinar on July 7, 2014, 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. ET

The webinar will introduce publicly available data on chronic conditions among Medicare beneficiaries. The webinar will also feature new interactive Dashboards that display chronic conditions that can be customized to examine different geographic levels and different Medicare populations.


Click here to register for the webinar.
Department of Labor

DOL Announces Funding to Improve Employment Opportunities for Youth with Disabilities

On June 26, 2014, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced funding for the "Pathways to Careers: Community Colleges for Youth and Young Adults with Disabilities" Demonstration Project. According to the release, eligible applicants must be institutes of higher education that provide education and career training that can be completed in two years or less, and recipients of funding through the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training grant program. The grant-funded programs must serve youth and young adults with disabilities between the ages of 14 and 24. DOL intends to award two cooperative agreements, each worth up to $1,041,650. The funding is intended to develop a pilot project that will build the capacity of community colleges to meet the educational and career development needs of youth with disabilities, including those with significant disabilities. The pilots will provide for researching, developing, testing and evaluating innovative systems to deliver inclusive integrated education and career development services.


Click here for more information.

New FAQs Posted to Address Contractors' Concerns by OFCCP

The U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Program (OFCCP) has a continuous effort to provide guidance to the contractor community. As part of this effort, OFCCP has posted extra Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) in response to inquiries from contractors. The FAQs reflect requirements of the revised regulations implementing Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Vietnam Era Veterans' Readjustment Assistance Act (VEVRAA). 


Click here to access the Section 503 FAQs.

Click here to access the VEVRAA facts.

Pride Month Blog Sheds Light on Similarities Between LGBTQ and Disability Communities

In honor of the month of June being pride month, the Chief of Staff for the Office of Disability Employment Policy, Dylan Orr, posted on the United States Department of Labor's blog site about the parallels of struggles and supports between the LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Questioning) and disability communities. Orr references his own story and his unearthing of the various connections between the two communities. Orr says, "These intersections have influenced me along my academic and professional path, and the disability community has become my community.


Click here to read the Pride Month blog.

Health and Human Services

HHS Offers Evidence-Based Materials for Conversations About Brain Health

The U.S Department of Health and Human Resources (HHS) has announced a new set of materials to facilitate conversations with older people about brain health as they grow older. The four-part set of materials explains what people can do to help keep their brains functioning at the highest level. Topics include: preventing falls to avoid head injury, refraining from excessively drinking alcohol, getting enough sleep, and managing diabetes and blood pressure. The materials provide connections to health screenings, exercise programs, chronic disease self-management education, fall prevention programs, and behavioral health programs funded by HHS. 


Click here to access the materials. 

Medicare Payment Advisory Commission

MedPAC Releases June 2014 Report to Congress

The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) recently released its June 2014 report to Congress. The report brings to the forefront issues regarding financing of the Medicare program and the future of program policies and service provision within the new health care environment. Specific focus areas include the setting of payment benchmarks, assessing risk adjustment, and exploring past and future methods for quality measurement, among others.


Click here to view the full report. 

Social Security Administration

SSA Releases New Instructions for Processing Benefits Claims Based on Same-Sex Marriages

The Social Security Administration (SSA) has released new instructions on processing retirement and survivors applications filed by same-sex couples. These instructions allow SSA to recognize some non-marital legal relationships as marriages for purposes of determining entitlement to benefits, as well as process claims in states that do not recognize same-sex marriages or non-marital legal relationships.


Click here for more information. 
From Congress

Senate Votes to Modernize, Reauthorize Federal Workforce Programs

This week,  the Senate voted 95-3 to reauthorize and update long-expired federal job training programs. Known as the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), the negotiated bill text was unveiled in May.   It represents a compromise between the SKILLS Act (H.R. 803),  which passed the House of Representatives in March 2013, and the Workforce Investment Act of 2013 (S. 1356), which passed the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee last July. Though exact timing is unclear, the House is expected to take up WIOA shortly, possibly after the Fourth of July recess.

For more information on the compromise legislation, please see:



  • A one-page summary of the legislation can be found here
  • The Manager's Statement, which includes a section-by-section summary of the bill, can be found here
  • The text of the bill can be found here.

Senator Calls For Expansion of Community-Based Services

U.S. Senator Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, has announced that he will introduce a bill to end "institutional bias". The proposal, referred to as the Community Integration Act, would require that states deem all individuals considered eligible for institutional care also be eligible for home and community-based services. Current law does not require Medicaid to offer home and community-based options to people with disabilities. The bill introduction nearly coincides with the 15th anniversary of a landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling on the issue. 


Click here for more information.
From the States

Oregon Releases Report Examining Year 1 of Medicaid Demonstration

On June 24, 2014, the Oregon Health Authority released a report analyzing the performance of Medicaid Coordinated Care Organizations (CCO) during the first year of the demonstration. CCOs are entities that receive lump-sum payments in order to coordinate care and deliver Medicaid services more efficiently and effectively. According to the report, all of the CCOs showed improvement in some of the 17 measures used to assess quality of care. Additionally, the report notes that Oregon is meeting budget targets contained within the Medicaid waiver that require the state to reduce spending growth by 2 percentage points, per member per year.  


Click here to view the full report.
From Other Organizations
AARP Public Policy Institute
AARP Public Policy Institute Blog Post Highlights Results of State LTSS Scorecard

Wendy Fox-Grage of the AARP Public Policy Institute wrote a blog post this week describing the results of the  recently released the AARP State LTSS Scorecard. This scorecard ranks state LTSS systems on a number of measures and was first published in 2011. It found that most states have made only modest overall changes since the release of the first edition of the Scorecard three years ago, but more than half of the states (28) improved the functioning of their ADRCs.



Click here to view the AARP blog post on LTSS and Aging and Disability Resource Centers. 
American Association on Health and Disability
2014-2015 AAHD Frederick J. Krause Scholarship on Health and Disability

The American Association on Health and Disability (AAHD) has announced the 2014-2015 Frederick J. Krause Scholarship for undergraduate (junior/senior status) and graduate students with disabilities who are majoring in a field related to disability and health. Applications are due November, 15, 2014. The scholarship program criteria includes: 

  • Applicant must have a disability   
  • Applicant must be enrolled full time as an undergraduate student (junior standing and above) or enrolled part time or full time in a graduate school
  • Applicant must be a US citizen or legal resident living in the US and enrolled in an accredited United States university   
Click here for more information.
Center for Health Care Strategies

CHCS Brief on Strategies to Facilitate Managed Care Implementation for Medicare-Medicaid Enrollees

The Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS) released a brief on strategies to facilitate managed care implementation for Medicare-Medicaid enrollees. The brief focuses on key strategies used by Medicaid agencies in four states - California, Florida, Massachusetts, and Texas - to facilitate managed care implementation. The main points in the brief include: 

  • State Medicaid agencies should consider designing onsite readiness review protocols for new or expanding managed care programs;
  • Post-implementation work-groups can be used to assess early beneficiary and provider experience can help identify key focus areas for early state oversight;
  • Collection of qualitative and quantitative data can help states to address beneficiary perceptions and experiences of new managed care programs.
Click here to view the brief.
LEAD Center
Webinar: Olmstead Anniversary 

The Olmstead Act, a transformative legal decision that affects the civil rights of people with disabilities celebrates its 15th anniversary on June 22, 2014. In 1999, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down the landmark decision in the Olmstead v. L.C. case thus requiring states to eliminate segregation of people with disabilities and to ensure that people with disabilities receive services in the most integrated setting appropriate to their needs. From 3:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET on July 16, 2014, the LEAD Center in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) will be hosting a webinar on the Olmstead Anniversary to discuss the history and influence of this landmark decision. 

Click here to register for the webinar.
Mathematica Policy Research


Click here to view the publication.

The SCAN Foundation

The Scan Foundation Releases Annual Report

The SCAN Foundation recently released their 2013 Annual Report. The report, Aging with Dignity: Reflecting on Five Years of Working to Improve the Lives of Older Adults, 

celebrates The SCAN Foundation's fifth year of work to advance aging with dignity and independence. The report also highlights the Foundation's work towards creating a more affordable and accessible system of care to meet the needs of older adults in California and across the nation.  


Click here to view the report. 

June Observances
Alzheimer's & Brain Awareness Month

June is Alzheimer's and Brain Awareness Month. Worldwide, there are at least 44 million people living with Alzheimer's disease and other dementia's.This month, there are many ways to help raise awareness and inspire action. These include:

  • Talk about Alzheimer's each time you meet other people 
  • Post, tweet and share the facts about Alzheimer's disease and other dementia's
  • Show your commitment to the cause by wearing purple, the official color of the Alzheimer's movement 

The Alzheimer's Association states that everyone who has a brain is at risk to develop Alzheimer's - but everyone can help to fight it. The goal is for the public to get involved and hopefully end Alzheimer's. 

Click here for more information.

Friday Update Archive


Did you miss a previous issue?  

Check out past Friday Updates.