« The Dual Agenda: November 5, 2014 Issue

Noteworthy News

Eldercare Workforce Toolkit Released

The Eldercare Workforce Alliance released a new toolkit for advocates promoting improved care for older adults who are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid. The Eldercare Workforce Alliance is comprised of 30 national member organizations united in their commitment to address the eldercare workforce shortage in order to ensure that older adults receive quality care in the settings of their choice. The goal of the toolkit is to promote high-quality, coordinated, person and family-centered health care and Long-Term Services and Supports for dually eligible older adults by helping to ensure the eldercare workforce is trained in gerontology and geriatrics best practices, and is operating as part of a well-coordinated team.

Community Catalyst worked with EWA in the development of this toolkit to create a practical resource for state-based advocates to use in making a strong case to policymakers and health plans for a well-trained, geriatric-competent workforce.

The guide provides advocates with resources – many garnered from EWA members’ extensive on-the-ground experience – that can be implemented by stakeholders to promote concrete workforce policy and practice recommendations for state officials, health plans and provider networks. 

This is a valuable new resource for advocates and health care professionals alike, seeking to articulate why dually eligible older adults must obtain care from providers who have been trained in the special skills and concepts needed to treat them most effectively, and with dignity, compassion and attention to their life goals and preferences.

National Association of Area Agencies on Aging Survey Results

Across the United States, 618 Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) help vulnerable adults over age 60, as well as younger people with disabilities, live with dignity and independence. In 2013, the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging received a grant from the US Administration on Community Living and partnered with the Scripps Gerontology Center of Excellence to conduct a survey of local AAAs. The goal of the survey was to assess how the role of these critical organizations was evolving to meet the needs of a growing population of older adults. In particular, the survey sought to understand how AAAs are responding to a changing health care system that is emphasizing more integrated care and focused on returning or keeping aging adults in the community rather than in institutions. This report presents the results of the survey, and provides interesting findings about how AAAs are responding to the changing health care landscape.  

Learn More About the Impact of IMPACT!

A new blog post by Joanne Lynn of the Altarum Institute gives an overview of the new Improved Medicare Post-Acute Care Transformation (IMPACT) Act. Passed by Congress in September 2014 and signed with little fanfare by President Obama, this new law will ensure that, within a few years, we will have a consistent way of measuring what’s important to older adults across all post-hospital settings. Medicare will now begin its work on implementing IMPACT, and this provides advocates with a unique opportunity urge Medicare to finds ways to measure what matters, with a specific focus on what is most important to the individual patient as s/he ages.

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