June 3, 2016
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NASUAD Releases Policy Priorities
On May 24th, at the spring membership meeting, NASUAD released the association's 2016 policy priorities.  The priorities document outlines issues and recommendations regarding a wide range of health and human services programs important to older adults and people with disabilities.  These include issues such as:
  •          Implementation of the Older Americans Act reauthorization;
  •          Medicaid LTSS innovations;
  •          Support for caregivers; and
  •          Employment for people with disabilities.
To read the full policy priorities, click here.
Registration for the 2016 HCBS Conference is Open! 
Join us for the National Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Conference held in Washington, DC, August 29 - September 1. The Conference offers a unique blend of policy, program, and practice issues for professionals interested in home and community based services for individuals of all abilities and in all settings. Quickly becoming the "go-to" conference for learning in the expanding field of HCBS and long-term services and supports, the Conference allows states to share best practices, present unique partnerships, and recognize the work of their peers. 

The National HCBS Conference will include federal, state, and local policymakers and those who administer, manage, and deliver waiver and other HCBS programs. The Conference always sees a strong presence from U.S. Health and Human Services ranging from the Administration for Community Living including (AoA, Office of Disability, and AIDD) to CMS, HRSA, SAMHSA, Office of Developmental Disabilities, and other federal agencies.

Click here to view details and register. 
I&R Center Webinar: America's Health Rankings Senior Report, 2016 
The National I&R Center is hosting a webinar on America's Senior Health Rankings Senior Report, 2016. The webinar will explore the most recent data released about senior health on a national and state-by-state basis, according to the Senior Health Rankings Report to be released by United Health Foundation. You will learn about national health improvements and challenges, senior health state rankings, and tools you can use to communicate the data. Your questions and suggestions will be welcomed. Sarah Milder, MPH, Principal Epidemiologist, Arundel Metrics, will present the information. The webinar will take place on Wednesday, June 8, 2016, from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET

Click here to view details and register.  
State Associations Submit Letter to DOL Outlining Concerns with FLSA Non-enforcement Policy
On Friday, June 3rd, the National Association of States United for Aging and Disabilities, the National Association of Medicaid Directors, the National Association of State Directors of Developmental Disabilities Services, and the National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors sent a letter to Department of Labor Secretary Tom Perez outlining concerns with the Fair Labor Standards Act "white collar" exemptions final rule (RIN 1235-AA11).  The primary concern is regarding inequities that manifest from the non-enforcement policy that DOL announced at 29 CFR Part 541 on May 18, 2016.   In the letter, the associations outline the unintended and adverse consequences arising from the DOL rule and the non-enforcement policy.  The letter requests several actions from DOL in order to mitigate the negative outcomes of this regulation, including:
  •          Expanding the non-enforcement policy to cover all government-funded HCBS services;
  •          Delaying the effective date for all Medicaid services until after the end of the next state legislative session; and
  •          Providing support for HCBS providers against the threat of litigation or other private action.
To read the full letter, please click here.
Media Campaign to Spread the Word About Medicare Extra Help Programs
The National Association of States United for Aging and Disabilities (NASUAD) is seeking to collaborate with disability organizations that already help people with one or more of the impairments that qualify individuals for SSI. NASUAD has created several resources to distribute to individuals with disabilities to inform them of the Medicare Savings Programs that are available for people with low-income backgrounds. We are hoping that organizations might utilize these tools. Please see the document below, which provides great shortcuts and helpful resources to help you participate in this campaign. Please email Linda Nakagawa if you have any comments or questions.

Click here to view information about the campaign. 
From the Administration
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
Updated Supplemental Security Income and Spousal Impoverishment Standards
On Tuesday, May 31, the Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services (CMCS) released an informational bulletin with the updated 2016 Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Spousal Impoverishment Standards.  Section 1924 of the Social Security Act requires that the Community Spouse's Minimum Monthly Maintenance Allowance (MMMNA) is adjusted according to changes in the federal poverty level effective July 1st each year.  The Community Spouse Monthly Housing Allowance is calculated based on a percentage of MMMNA and determines the excess shelter allowance for July 1st as well.  The bulletin includes the revised 2016 SSI and Spousal Impoverishment Standards chart with the updated MMNA and Community Spouse Monthly Housing Allowances.

Click here to view the publication. 
Medicaid Benefits Available for Prevention, Detection and Response to Zika Virus
The Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services (CMCS) published a bulletin on Wednesday, July 1, 2016 to inform Medicaid agencies and interested stakeholders about how Medicaid services and authorities can help states and territories prevent, detect, and respond to the Zika virus.  The Early Periodic Screening, Diagnostic, and Treatment (EPSDT) benefit provides coverage of all medically necessary services for beneficiaries under the age of 21 as described in section 1905(a) of the Social Security Act.  This includes long-term services and supports (LTSS) for children born with microcephaly or other Zika-related disabilities as well as long-term rehabilitative care for individuals recovering from Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) who may require nursing home services or home and community-based long-term services and supports (CB-LTSS).  Medicaid offers many options for coverage of these services, which can also be used to support children living at home, and states have flexibility in designing these services. 

Click here to view the publication. 
From Other Organizations
Webinar: Mental Health for Individuals Living with Chronic Illness and Disabilities
Allsup is sponsoring a webinar for individuals living with chronic illness and disabilities. The event, "True Help Claiming Power to Improve Your Mental Health", is designed to help individuals connect with peers and experts in mental health, chronic illness and employment.  Presenters from the Lupus Foundation of America, the EDI Institute, MoodNetwork and Allsup Employment Services, Inc. will share tools, resources and programs that can enhance mental wellness and quality of life.  This free event will take place on Thursday, June 16, 2016, from 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. ET.

Click here to register. 
American Academy of Nursing
2016 Academy Policy Conference: Call for Abstracts
The American Academy of Nursing issued a call for abstracts for their 2016 Policy Conference.  The 2016 Policy Conference will focus on issues surrounding HealthCare Economics and is scheduled for Thursday, October 20, 2016 to Saturday, October 22, 2016 in Washington, DC.  Abstracts should demonstrate nursing contributions to health policy through translational science from efficacy to effectiveness studies, implementation and dissemination studies, comparative effectiveness research, or historical and health policy research.  Quality improvement projects that inform organizational policy and systems of care are also welcomed, as are evidence-based practice projects. Submissions are due by 11:59 p.m. ET on Friday, June 24, 2016.

Click here to view details and apply. 
American Association of People with Disabilities
2016 NBCUniversal Tony Coehlo Memorial Scholarships Available 
The American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) is offering eight NBCUniversal Tony Coelho Media Scholarships thanks to a generous contribution from NBCUniversal. Eligible applicants for this scholarship are "second year associate students, undergraduate sophomores, juniors, and seniors; and graduate students with disabilities with an interest in the entertainment, media, or communications industries." This scholarship was named in honor of Tony Coelho, a former United States Representative from California and the primary author and sponsor of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Scholarship recipients will receive $5,625 to help with the associated expenses of education at their colleges or universities. All applications must be submitted by July 1, 2016, at 5:00 p.m. ET. 

Click here to view details and apply. 
Gerontological Society of America
2017 World Congress of Gerontology & Geriatrics: Call for Abstracts
The Gerontological Society of America is hosting the 2017 World Congress of Gerontology and Geriatrics and has issued a call for abstracts. The conference is scheduled for July 23, 2017 through July 27, 2017 in San Francisco, California.  Over 6,000 thought leaders, industry pioneers, scientists, researchers, and innovators from across multiple disciplines in the field of aging are expected to attend. The event is convened every four years, and the last time it was hosted in the United States was 32 years ago.  This is a unique opportunity for presenters to share their work with a large national and international audience of experts in aging. Submissions are due by Friday, July 15, 2016.

Click here to view details and apply. 
National Alzheimer's and Dementia Resource Center
Webinar: Preparing a Dementia Capable Workforce
The National Alzheimer's and Dementia Resource Center (NADRC) is hosting the webinar "Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program: Preparing a Dementia Capable Workforce".  Participants will learn about HRSA's efforts to develop a dementia capable workforce by 1) identifying ways for efficient dementia case finding; 2) learning about lifestyle interventions for persons living with dementia; 3) developing effective communication strategies across all levels of care; and 4) learning about interprofessional health care teams that include community service partners.  Directors from the Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Programs in St. Louis and Illinois will present at this webinar that is scheduled for Wednesday, June 22, 2016 from 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET.  

Click here to register.
National Foundation to End Senior Hunger
State of Senior Hunger in America 2014: Annual Report
On Wednesday, June 1, 2016, the National Foundation to End Senior Hunger (NFESH) released a study that revealed for the first time over 10 million seniors face the threat of hunger.  The analysis is based on the Core Food Security Module (CFSM) in the Current Population Survey (CPS), which is the same module used by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to establish the official food insecurity rates.  The threat of hunger is defined as marginally food insecure or at least one affirmative answer on the CFSM.  From 2001 to 2014, the fraction of seniors experiencing the threat of hunger increased by 47%. The number of seniors rose by 119% which also reflects the growing population of seniors.  Since the onset of the recession in 2007 until 2014, the number of seniors experiencing the threat of hunger has increased by 65%. Those living in states in the South and Southwest, those who are racial or ethnic minorities, those with lower incomes, and those who are ages 60-69 were most likely to be threatened by hunger.  The report also includes the percentages of food insecurity/threat of hunger for each state.  

Click here to view the full report.
United Healthcare Community & State
White Paper: MLTSS Programs 
Last week at the Iowa Governor's Conference on Aging and Disability and MLTSS Symposium hosted by NASUAD in Des Moines, Iowa, UnitedHealthcare Community & State released a White Paper unveiling a proposed quality framework for MLTSS programs. The framework, developed by UnitedHealthcare's National Advisory Board, extends beyond traditional clinical measures to measure the quality of the "services and supports" delivered in MTLSS, which is often most important for those accessing MLTSS benefits. The measures are person-centered, outcomes-focused, and adoptable in any Medicaid program in which LTSS services are in a managed care delivery system. The White Paper calls consumers, advocates, and policymakers to action to implement consistent quality frameworks for MLTSS across the country to improve the ability to measure the quality of MLTSS programs both over time and across states, which cannot be done today.
Martha Roherty, Executive Director of NASUAD is a member of the National Advisory Board and was instrumental in the development of both the framework and the White Paper. 
If you have questions or would like to learn more, you can send an email here.

Click here to view the publication. 
Webinar: Times of Transformation: The Changing LTSS Environment for the Aging and Disability Networks
The Administration on Community Living (ACL) and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) are hosting a webinar about new efforts to integrate care for people with Medicare and Medicaid, and how aging and disability organizations can participate.  This session will highlight the trends, opportunities and challenges facing community-based organizations as they work to help older adults and people with disabilities live successfully at home and in the community.  The free webinar will take place on Wednesday, June 29, 2016, from 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. ET.

Click here to view details and register. 
Funding Opportunities 
Building the Business Capacity of Community-Based Aging and Disability Networks for Integrated Services Partnerships
The Administration for Community Living (ACL) announced two new funding opportunities that seek to expand the readiness of community-based aging and disability organizations (CBO) for contracting with integrated care entities, and prepare state agencies and CBOs to be active stakeholders and partners in the development and implementation of integrated care systems.

The Learning Collaboratives for Advanced Business Acumen Skills initiative is intended to achieve the following tasks: organize and conduct three to five topically-based action learning collaboratives to address issues such as continuous quality improvement, infrastructure and technology, generating and maintaining volume, data pooling, and more; provide targeted technical assistance to networks of CBOs; and create knowledge and capture insights through these collaboratives to incorporate into future curriculum for national dissemination.
The purpose of the Business Acumen for Disability Organizations initiative is to develop baseline knowledge about the content and infrastructure needs of CBOs through surveys and feasibility studies; and utilize a learning collaborative model to provide targeted technical assistance to up to 15 state coalitions of CBOs that seek to build their business capacity to contract with health care entities (e.g. hospitals, health systems, accountable care organizations, managed/integrated care plans).

Applications for both opportunities are due by 11:59 p.m. ET on Monday, July 11, 2016. 

Click here to view the Learning Collaboratives for Advanced Business Acumen Skills posting.
Click here to view the Business Acumen for Disability Organizations posting.
Partnerships in Employment Systems Change
The Administration for Community Living (ACL) released the Partnerships in Employment Systems Change grant. The purpose of the funding opportunity is to encourage state partnerships and systems change efforts that will contribute to the 1) the development of policies that support competitive employment in integrated settings as the first and desired outcome for youth and young adults with developmental disabilities including intellectual disabilities; 2) the removal of systemic barriers to competitive employment in integrated settings; 3) the implementation of strategies and best practices that improve employment outcomes for youth with intellectual and developmental disabilities; and 4) enhanced statewide collaborations that can facilitate the transition process from secondary to post-secondary school, or other pre-vocational settings, to complete employment in integrated settings.  Eligible applicants include state and local governments, public and private institutions of higher education, independent school districts, nonprofit organizations, and public housing authorities. All applications are due by 11:59 p.m. ET on Tuesday, July 26, 2016. 

 Click here to view the full posting. 
Building the Business Capacity of Senior Nutrition Programs Learning Collaborative Grants 
The National Resource Center for Nutrition and Aging has announced the availability of funding for eight (8) community-based Older Americans Act (OAA) Nutrition Programs interested in strengthening their business capacity. The first Business Acumen Learning Collaborative was announced August 2015.
The Senior Nutrition Program Business Acumen Learning Collaborative is designed to help funded OAA nutrition programs strengthen their business capacity and align service capabilities to prepare to negotiate contracts with healthcare entities, either directly or as a part of a community-based network and to help improve the sustainability of their programs. This initiative provides funding, via eight (8) $10,000 mini-grant awards, and technical assistance, both in-person and through a variety of other learning activities. Eligible applicants are OAA Nutrition Programs that currently receive funding from the Older Americans Act for Title III Part C - Nutrition Services or Title VI Grants for Native Americans to provide meals and other nutrition services to older adults in their community. The applicant organization can be either a public organization or private, non-profit organization. This initiative is funded in part by a cooperative agreement between the US Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services and Meals on Wheels America. 
All requirements stated in the Request for Applications must be met in order for an application to be considered. Applications must be submitted by 5:00 p.m. ET on Friday, June 3, 2016. 

Click here to view the full posting. 

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