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Home    Advocacy    Training & Events    Programs    Resources    Join    Nov. 23, 2011
 
 
 

n4a sends you wishes for an enjoyable
and safe Thanksgiving holiday.


Panel fails to reach deal on plan for deficit reduction
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Leaders of the congressional committee charged with finding at least $1.2 trillion in deficit reductions conceded on November 21, that panel members had failed, setting up what is likely to be a yearlong political fight over the automatic cuts to a broad range of military and domestic programs that would go into effect starting in 2013 as a result of their inability to reach a deal. More

Policy Update


Supreme Court's planned review of healthcare law shocks Medicaid advocates
The Washington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
While there was no surprise over the Supreme Court's decision November 14, to review the 2010 healthcare act's insurance mandate, supporters of the law are reeling over the justices' announcement that they will also consider a long-shot challenge to what many consider an even more central provision of the statute. That provision is the extension of Medicaid to cover a greater number of the poor. Twenty-six states say the expansion amounts to an unconstitutional coercion of state governments, which provide part of Medicaid's funding. More



Medicare-Medicaid 'dual eligibles' under scrutiny
USA Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
State Medicaid directors and health insurers' trade groups are urging the supercommittee to give states the option to mandate that most or all dual eligibles be enrolled in private plans that can closely manage their care. Medicare and Medicaid were never designed to work together, so the way states and the federal government split the dual eligibles' bills leads to inefficient care, experts say. More

Health leaders prepare for round 2 of cuts
Kaiser Health News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Regardless of whether Congress' supercommittee meets its deadline for finding ways to reduce the federal deficit, budget and policy experts are braced for Washington soon to face the painful task of finding more savings — and they anticipate that health spending will be at the top of the list. The super committee has examined a variety of ideas to save money in Medicare, the federal program that provides coverage to about 48 million elderly and disabled people, which eats 15 percent of the federal budget. The proposals include cutting payments to medical providers, asking beneficiaries to pay more for their coverage, and increasing the eligibility age. More

HHS expands initiative to protect Medicare and seniors from fraud
Department of Health & Human Services    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recently announced the award of $9 million from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to help Senior Medicare Patrol programs across the nation continue their work fighting Medicare fraud. This is part of President Barack Obama's initiative to educate people with Medicare about how to protect themselves and Medicare from fraud. SMPs rely on approximately 5,000 volunteers nationwide to enhance their efforts. More

n4a Announcements


AAAs among first sites selected for Care Transition programs
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
n4a is pleased to report that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has announced the first seven awardees under the Community Care Transitions Program with Area Agencies on Aging very well represented. This news only reinforces the significant role AAAs play at the community-level to help provide better coordinated, consumer-focused, quality care for Medicare beneficiaries at a lower cost. n4a congratulates each of the awardees on their successful proposals. More

Take action: The Community Based Care Transitions Program will hold a conference call on Tuesday, November 29, from 1-2:30 p.m. (ET), to allow stakeholders to hear directly from some of the newly selected sites. CMS staff will provide additional information about the program and be available to answer questions. Call-in number: 800-837-1936, Conference ID: 29693317.




Research & Trends


End-of-life documents not a huge concern for many boomers
The Associated Press via The Washington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Most people don't want to think about death, much less plan for it — especially when they feel healthy and young in their middle-age years. And that, some baby boomers say, is one of the big reasons so few of them have end-of-life legal documents such as a living will. An Associated Press-LifeGoesStrong.com poll found that 64 percent of boomers — those born between 1946 and 1964 — say they don't have a healthcare proxy or living will. Those documents would guide medical decisions should a patient be unable to communicate with doctors. More

Number of 90-plus people likely to quadruple by 2050
USA Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Census Bureau recently released its first report on nonagenarians and older — the fastest-growing segment of the senior population. The research shows that people living to age 90 and beyond has tripled in the past three decades to almost 2 million and is likely to quadruple by 2050. Nearly all 90-somethings who live in nursing homes have a disability, and about 80 percent of those not in nursing homes have one. People plan for retirement but not always for care into their 90s and beyond, says Sandy Markwood, CEO of the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging. "We really need to focus on being able to help people who are 85, 90, 95 to live at home as long as possible and to live at home independently," she says. More

Innovations


Over 100,000 primary care providers sign up to adopt electronic health records through their Regional Extension Centers
Health & Human Services    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Health & Human Services Office for the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology recently announced more than 100,000 primary care providers are adopting certified Electronic Health Records to help improve their quality of care and ultimately lower healthcare costs. This commitment by more than one-third of all primary care providers nationwide to work with their Regional Extension Center to participate in the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record Incentive Programs as a way to transition from paper records to certified EHRs, representing a major step toward broader and more meaningful use of health IT. More



Resources


Avoid check fraud during the holidays
Go Direct    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
While the holiday season is a time for laughter, fun and warmth, sadly, it is also the peak time of year for crime. Statistics show that crime usually increases both during and after the holiday season, according to the National Crime Prevention Council. People who receive federal benefit payments by paper check could be putting their money at risk of financial crimes. This holiday season, give the people you serve the gift of increased financial safety. Encourage them to protect their federal benefit payments by switching to electronic payments now. A new Holiday Fraud partner tool kit for community-based organizations and financial institutions is available for your use during the holiday season. Materials include newsletter copy, social media tips, fliers and posters, and an educational video. More

Social Security information available in Spanish
Social Security Administration    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Social Security Administration recently updated and expanded online services available on a Spanish-language website www.segurosocial.gov. Expanded services now include the ability to apply online for retirement and Medicare benefits, completely in Spanish. More
 

 
Answers on Aging for Professionals
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601  Download media kit
Lisa Smith, Senior Content Editor, 469.420.2644   Contribute news

The articles in Answers on Aging for Professionals are chosen from a variety of sources to keep subscribers informed of topics and trends that impact aging service professionals and the older population they serve. Publication of any article or advertisement does not imply that n4a has endorsed or supports its content.

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