Volume XIII, Number 2 - March 6, 2013
State Legislation, Policy & Reports
Articles of interest on pending and proposed legislation as well as current policies and new reports surrounding caregiving and healthcare at the state level.
Feds Give OK; Medicaid's Frail Elderly to Enter HMOs
Paraprofessional Health Institute (PHI): High-Hour Consumers in the California IHSS Program: Impact of Compensating Overtime Hours
Sequester will Affect Seniors and Family Caregivers
Federal Legislation, Policy & Reports
Articles of interest on pending and proposed legislation as well as current policies and new reports surrounding caregiving and healthcare across the United States.
1. Two New Reports from Family Caregiver Alliance's National Center on Caregiving
2. Special Report: Bitter Pill: Why Medical Bills Are Killing Us
3. American Medical Association: There and Home Again, Safely: 5 Responsibilities of Ambulatory Practices in High Quality Care Transitions
4. Health and Human Services: Medicare prescription drug savings hit $5.7B
5.National Institute of Senior Centers: Senior Centers Play Key Role in Helping Seniors Manage their Health
International news surrounding caregiving and related healthcare issues from countries around the world.
[No International News articles this week]
Organizational reports and professional journal articles of interest surrounding caregiving and healthcare nationally and world-wide.
Research Reports & Journal Articles
1. Health Affairs: Default Options In Advance Directives Influence How Patients Set Goals For End-Of-Life Care?
2. RWJF: The Revolving Door: A Report on U.S. Hospital Readmissions
3. UCLA Center for Health Policy Research: Californians with Disabilities Struggle to Remain at Home as Public Supports Shrinks
4. California Medicaid Research Institute: Medi-Cal Beneficiaries Who Use Long Term Services and Supports: Profiles of Utilization and Spending in Eight Dual Eligible Integration Counties, 2008.
Conferences & Trainings
Upcoming trainings, educational conferences and speaker series on caregiving and related healthcare topics.
1. ASA 2013: The Aging in America Conference
2. 13th Population Health Colloquium
4. 66th Annual GSA Conference: Call for Abstracts, registration information
6. 15th Annual International Conference on Hoarding and Cluttering
Funding, Media & Miscellaneous
Information and links related to funding and media and more...
1. Participate in Doctoral Research
2. Care about your Care
3. Fact Sheets from The Family Caregiver Alliance
4. Caregiving Resources
5. 10 Things You Can Do To Support Aging with Dignity and Independence
6. Call for Applications: Health and Aging Policy Fellows
STATE . . .
Florida:Feds Give OK; Medicaid's Frail Elderly to Enter HMOs
Federal health officials have given Florida permission to enroll elderly, sick Medicaid patients into private managed-care plans set to begin July 1. The program will cover approximately 87,000 elderly and disabled Medicaid patients, about 50,000 of whom are patients already in nursing homes. The others are in the Home and Community-Based Services program, which is capped at 36,795 persons and has a lengthy waiting list. Health plans and legislative leaders are upbeat about the program's potential to keep patients out of nursing homes and save money for taxpayers. In 2009, according to StateHealthFacts.org, the aged and disabled made up less than one-third of Medicaid patients, but they accounted for more than two-thirds of the spending
. . . READ MORE
California: Paraprofessional Health Institute (PHI): High-Hour Consumers in the California IHSS Program: Impact of Compensating Overtime Hours
In December 2011, the Obama administration announced its proposal for revising the companionship exemption of the Fair Labor Standards Act - a change that would finally guarantee federal minimum wage and overtime protections for most home care aides. PHI examined how the proposed rule might affect California's In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) program. IHSS is the nation's largest publicly funded home care program, and is the only one that allows individuals with high-level needs to hire attendants for long hours (a maximum of 283 hours per month). The program relies heavily on paid family members to support program participants. . . . READ MORE
Kentucky: Sequester will Affect Seniors and Family Caregivers
The federal sequestration is going to mean billions of dollars in across-the-board federal spending cuts mandated over the next several months. In the Barren River Area Development District (BRADD) there already is a long list of families waiting to receive services that likely will have to be cut. BRADD's Aging and Disability Resources Center programs have a waiting list and could take a hit of a little more than $90,000 with an anticipated budget cut of about 8%. There are 586 people who want and need home-delivered hot meals, 408 people who need help around the house, and another 900 are on lists for other aging services. There are currently 54 people on the list for its family caregiver support program, which provides respite to family members providing care for family members. These services, which have allowed people to live at home rather than in costly nursing homes, are now at risk
. . . READ MORE
FEDERAL . . .
National Center on Caregiving
Two reports were recently released from Family Caregiver Alliance's National Center on Caregiving.
Bitter Pill: Why Medical Bills Are Killing Us
This article presents an in-depth analysis of the cost of medical care in America. It discusses how the medical system has become a medical-industrial-complex and how cost of services was not completely addressed in the ACA . . . READ MORE
There and Home Again, Safely: 5 Responsibilities of Ambulatory Practices in High Quality Care Transitions
This report from the American Medical Association (AMA) focuses on improving care transitions by looking at the role of outpatient medical practices. Five key responsibilities for care transition are identified, including the role of care coordination. This report aims to improve the safety of care transitions across the entire continuum of care by focusing particular attention on a relatively neglected aspect of care transitions: the appropriate roles and responsibilities of ambulatory practices (i.e., outpatient clinics and other similar settings) in ensuring the safety of patients transitioning in and out of inpatient settings. Patients moving to and from the hospital, often coming from and going back to their homes, are, in effect, experiencing a care transition out of, and then back into, an ambulatory setting. . . READ MORE
HHS report: Medicare prescription drug savings hit $5.7B
Seniors have saved about $5.7 billion on prescription drugs since January 2011 because of provisions in the 2010 health care law meant to close the Medicare "doughnut hole," "This discount has led more people to be able to afford their medication, which keeps them healthier and can help bring down costs in the long run," said Jon Blum, director of the Center for Medicare, part of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). . . READ MORE
Senior Centers Play Key Role in Helping Seniors Manage their Health
In a recent National Institute of Senior Centers survey, nearly half (56) of the 119 senior centers indicated that they provide case management services on site, with some saying they also have a registered nurse on staff, particularly for Medicaid waiver clients
. . . READ MORE
RESEARCH . . .
Health Affairs: Default Options In Advance Directives Influence How Patients Set Goals For End-Of-Life Care
Although decisions regarding end-of-life care are personal and important, they may be influenced by the ways in which options are presented. To test this hypothesis, 132 seriously ill patients were randomly assigned to complete one of three types of advance directives. The findings provide motivation for future research examining whether using default options in advance directives may improve important outcomes, including patients' receipt of wanted and unwanted services, resource use, survival, and quality of life..
RWJF: The Revolving Door: A Report on U.S. Hospital Readmissions
A new report from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation shows that hospitals and their community allies made little progress from 2008 to 2010 at reducing hospital readmissions for elderly patients. The report also chronicles a series of in-depth interviews with patients and providers that shed light on why patients end up back in the hospital and what hospitals, doctors, nurses, and others are doing to limit avoidable readmissions. The report also highlights findings from interviews with 32 patients who have experienced a recent readmission, as well as caregivers and health care providers who care for patients who have been readmitted. These interviews provide some insight into what is causing repeat trips to the hospital, and what can be done to help patients transition from hospital to home. . .
Californians with Disabilities Struggle to Remain at Home as Public Supports Shrinks
This policy brief from the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, produced with support from The SCAN Foundation, presents findings from a year-long study that followed a small but typical set of older Californians with disabilities who depend on paid public programs and unpaid help to live safely and independently at home. All of the people who were surveyed shared a common desire to maintain their independence at almost any cost .
. . . READ MORE
California Medicaid Research Institute: Medi-Cal Beneficiaries Who Use Long Term Services and Supports: Profiles of Utilization and Spending in Eight Dual Eligible Integration Counties, 2008
As part of a partnership between the University of California and the California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS), the California Medicaid Research Institute (CAMRI) developed an integrated and longitudinal database containing Medi-Cal and Medicare claims and assessment data of LTSS recipients in California in 2008. This report by CAMRI looked at characteristics and program spending across the entire care continuum for beneficiaries with long-term services and supports needs within Medi-Cal (California's Medicaid system) and for dual eligibles across Medicare and Medi-Cal. The focus of this report is on LTSS use and spending in the eight duals demonstration counties in California (Alameda County, Los Angeles County, Orange County, Riverside County, San Bernadino County, San Diego County, San Mateo County, Santa Clara County)...
A Good Mood May Boost Seniors' Brain Power
New research published in the journal Cognition and Emotion, suggests that when older people's mood improves, so does their brain power, resulting in enhanced decision-making skills and improved memory. In conducting the study, the researchers divided 46 adults ranging in age from 63 to 85 years into two equal groups, where one group received a thank you note and two small bags of candy tied with a red ribbon to boost their mood, and the other group received nothing. Both groups played virtual card games on a computer, yet the backgrounds and icons differed between groups. The study revealed that the older adults whose spirits were lifted with a thank you note and candy performed much better at the decision-making test than the other participants...
CONFERENCES . . .
The 2013 Aging in America Conference: March 12-16, 2003
The 2013 Aging in America Conference will be held this year from March 12-16, 2013 in Chicago. This conference brings together relevant content, innovations and best practices, and develops thought leadership on the most critical issues in the field of aging. Register here
Please join us in a number of FCA-sponsored events at ASA including:
- Caregiver Assessment Within HCBS Programs Across the States, March 13, 2013, 8 - 9:30 am. This workshop offers expanded coverage of our national survey to examine caregiver assessment on the state level within HCBS programs.
- Symposium on Caregiver Assessment: Research, Policy and Practice Issues, March 14, 2013 from 1 - 4pm This Symposium will cover four projects related to caregiver assessment: a pilot test of a self-administered caregiver assessment in HCBS programs in 4 counties in New Jersey; an updated inventory of caregiver assessment tools; a critical review of caregiver assessment in transitional care programs; and caregiver assessment within Medicaid waiver HCBS programs and Personal Care Services in the states.
- Caregiving Legacy Awards 5 Year Anniversary Celebration, Rosalinde Gilbert Innovations in Alzheimer's Disease, March 14th, 6:30 - 8 pm Join us for a celebration of the 2012 award winners and recognition of these innovators in the advancement of caregiving for Alzheimer's disease.The award reception also serves as a five-year celebration of the Innovations in Alzheimer's award program and will acknowledge all previous winners for their excellence in the categories of Diverse/Multicultural Communities, Policy & Advocacy, and Creative Expression. . . .
The 13th Population Health Colloquium: March 13-15
The 13th Population Health Colloquium will be held this year from March 13-15, 2013 in Philadelphia, PA. This colloquium is the leading forum on innovations in population health and care coordination. It is sponsored by the Jefferson School of Population Health. For more information:
Phone: (800) 503-7439
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org . . .MORE INFORMATION
The 17th Annual Compliance Institute: April 20-24
Join us in National Harbors, MD for the single most comprehensive compliance conference designed specifically to meet the needs of today's health care compliance professional. Healthcare Reform, Hospital Physician Alignment, Compliance Effectiveness, and HIPAA Privacy/Data Breach are all adding complexity to the challenges facing compliance professionals. The 2013 HCCA Compliance Institute can help you bring order to this seeming chaos. The program is designed for compliance professionals from a variety of healthcare backgrounds, including compliance officers, billing and coding professionals, auditors, nurses, risk managers, ethics officers, privacy officers, health information professionals. . .
Call for Abstracts: 66th Annual GSA Conference: November 20-24
GSA's Annual Scientific Meeting brings together more than 4,000 of the brightest minds in the field of aging. This meeting in New Orleans, LA is the premier gathering of gerontologists from both the United States and around the world. They participate in over 400 scientific sessions including symposia, paper, and poster presentations
Friday, March 15, 2013 - Online Abstract Submission Deadline Friday, March 15, 2013 - Pre-Conference Workshop Application Deadline August 2013 - Abstract Acceptance/Non-Acceptance Email Notifications http://www.geron.org/annual-meeting/call-for-abstracts
8th National Medicaid Congress: May 29-31
The Eighth National Medicaid Congress brings together the best and the brightest from Federal and State government, academia, health plans, advocacy groups, and providers to explore the key policy and operational issues that face us. From its opening preconference on managing "super utilizers" to the closing plenary on the road ahead, the Congress offers practical reports from the field, including half-day tracks on dual eligibles and innovative delivery models, and keynote addresses from the leading Medicaid thought leaders
Onsite Attendance:Hyatt Regency Crystal City, Washington DC
Webcast Participation: http://www.medicaidcongress.com/
. . .
15th Annual International Conference on Hoarding and Cluttering: May 2-3
The theme for the 2013 conference, which will be held in San Francisco, CA, is "Community Solutions: Discover Together, Recover Together". Emphasizing communities working together to better understand the issues surrounding hoarding and cluttering challenges, promoting task forces and effective engagement of diverse stakeholders. Featuring 16 breakout sessions, 3 Peer Discussion Groups, and over 40 speakers and presenters . . . MORE INFORMATION
FUNDING . . .
Participate in Doctoral Research: The Effects of Caregiving on Psychological Well-Being of Family Members Caring for Alzheimer's Patients
Dear Family Caregiver,
My name is Loretta Kelly, MA, a Doctoral Dissertation student at Argosy University, Southern California. I am inviting you to take a Psychological Well-Being survey. This study is confidential. There are no wrong or right answers. The questions deal with how you feel about yourself and your life. The survey will take approximately 30 to 60 minutes to complete.
Please log on to the posted website located on the "Family Caregiver Alliance."
Thank you for your participation. The results of this survey will aid further research in identifying the well-being of care-givers who care for Alzheimer's patients. . . . MORE INFORMATION
Care About Your Care: A national conversation highlighting efforts to improve care transitions, reduce hospital readmissions, and lift the overall quality of care.
The Family caregiver Alliance is a partner in this effort.
How to Avoid Being Readmitted to the Hospital Discharge Checklist & Care Transition Plan
Fact Sheets from The Family Caregiver Alliance
The facts sheets are available in English, Chinese, Spanish, Vietnamese, and Korean, covering topics such as: Caregiving issues and strategies, health conditions, legal issues, and statistics and demographics. There are also teleconferencing archives, as well as other FCA publications
. . . .MORE INFORMATION
A list of, and links to, organizations working for and supporting family caregivers.
. . .FOR MORE INFORMATION
10 Things You Can Do To Support Aging with Dignity and Independence
Americans are living longer than ever before. This country currently lacks a system of care and support that enables older adults to age with dignity, independence, and choice in the face of increasing health and daily needs. Vulnerable older adults need more affordable and accessible options for receiving care and support in their homes so that they don't have to end up in a nursing home. Fulfilling this need will take unprecedented levels of public involvement in our neighborhoods, communities, and at the state and federal levels.The Scan Foundation has put together a list of 10 ways you can help to ensure that a system of care is available for you and your loved ones should you ever need it.
. . .FOR MORE INFORMATION
Call for Applications: Health and Aging Policy Fellows
The Health and Aging Policy Fellows Program is a unique opportunity for professionals in health and aging to receive the experience and skills necessary to make a positive contribution to the development and implementation of health policies that affect older Americans. The Health and Aging Policy Fellows program is directed by Harold Alan Pincus, MD, Professor of Psychiatry at Columbia University (in collaboration with the American Political Science Association Congressional Fellowship Program) and made possible by the generous support of The Atlantic Philanthropies. . . . FOR MORE INFORMATION