Monthly Archives: April, 2018

Survey Sets Out to Identify Unique Challenges Faced by Pennsylvania’s Approximately 60,000 Women Veterans Number of Women Veterans is in an Upward Trajectory Nationwide

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Annville, PA A report by the National Center for Veterans Analysis and Statistics projects that by 2043 the number of women veterans will increase from about 10 percent to more than 16 percent of all living veterans. With this number on the rise, the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA) has partnered on a survey with the Women Veterans Committee of the Governor’s Advisory Council of Veterans Services to identify issues of unique concern to Pennsylvania’s approximately 60,000 women veterans.

“Veterans face a number of challenges transitioning back to civilian status, including access to health care, unemployment and behavioral health issues,” said Maj. Gen. (ret.) Eric Weller, DMVA deputy adjutant general for Veterans Affairs. “Understanding the needs and the unique challenges of our female veterans is the first step in making sure we provide the right benefits, services and programs. We ask Pennsylvania’s women veterans of all service eras to complete the survey.”
Weller said that the survey data could be used to recommend policies or procedures that address issues women veterans face as a result of military service.

“We are making a conscious effort to identify challenges and to improve the quality of life for Pennsylvania’s women veterans,” said Weller.

The comprehensive survey is available online for easy completion and submission at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/PADMVAWomenVeteransSurvey. Key survey topics focus on benefits and services, access to health care and veterans service organizations.

The survey is available for completion now through midnight, June 18, 2018.

SOURCE: news release

CMS Drives Patient-Centered Care over Paperwork in Proposals to Modernize Medicare and Reduce Burden

Proposed rules would advance administrative burden reduction, Medicare modernization, and the Meaningful Measures Initiative

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(April 27, 2018) – Today, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) proposed transformative changes to the payment systems for services furnished by a range of medical facilities. The agency’s proposed payment rules also set out to continue to modernize Medicare through innovation in skilled nursing facility payment to drive value, advance meaningful quality measure reporting, and reduce paperwork and administrative costs.

“We envision all elements of CMS’ healthcare delivery system working to reward value over volume and decisively focus on patients receiving quality care from their Medicare benefits,” said Administrator Seema Verma. “For skilled nursing facilities, we are taking important steps through proposed payment improvements that will reduce administrative burden, and foster innovation to improve care and quality for patients. As people face rising healthcare costs in other clinical settings, we need to leverage advances in technology that help to modernize our programs in a way that benefits patients.”

The proposed payment rules issued today will update Medicare policies and rates under the Skilled Nursing Facilities Prospective Payment System (SNF PPS), Inpatient Rehabilitation Facilities Prospective Payment System (IRF PPS), Hospice Wage Index and Payment Rate Update, and Inpatient Psychiatric Facility Prospective Payment System (IPF PPS). These payment policy proposals for Fiscal Year 2019 further advance the agency’s priority of creating a patient-driven healthcare system that fosters innovation of efficient and accountable programs while removing waste, fraud, and abuse. Continue reading →

May 25 | VA Legal and Domestic Relations Clinic

VA legal clinic

Friday Wrap-Up, April 27, 2018 | a message from the Secretary of Aging

Each week the Office of the Secretary of Pennsylvania’s Department of Aging releases a Friday newsletter with information relevant to activities, issues and events for older Pennsylvanians and persons with disabilities across the Commonwealth. Click here download the newsletter as a .pdf file.

Position announcement | Director of Veterans Affairs, Lebanon County

job announcement

To download this information as a .pdf file, click here.

50plus LIFE COVER STORY: Senior Volunteers Close the Generation Gap”

senior life

April is National Volunteer Month. National Volunteer month in the United States takes place in the month of April. This month is dedicated to honoring all of the volunteers in our communities as well as encouraging volunteerism throughout the month.

The April 2018 issue of 50plus LIFE includes several articles that hone in on the beneficial aspects and opportunities for volunteering.

Read the COVER STORY: Senior Volunteers Close the Generation Gap.

Here’s a link to a page listing volunteer opportunities: http://50pluslifepa.com/local-stories/volunteering

50plus LIFE (formerly 50plus Senior News), an award-winning publication published monthly, provides individuals 50 and over in the Susquehanna and Delaware valleys with engaging editorial on a range of relevant topics: entertainment, travel, healthy living, financial matters, profiles, veterans’ issues, community events, and more.

With more than 20 years in publication, 50plus LIFE is available in six county-specific issues: Chester, Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster, Lebanon, and York. 50plus LIFE and can be found in print, online, and on Facebook.

April 28 – National Drug Take Back Day

4-28 drug take back day

DRUG TAKE-BACK LOCATIONS.Do your part and take back those prescription pills –

If you need assistance in finding a treatment provider or funding for addiction treatment, please call 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or contact your local county drug and alcohol office.

 

 

“For those who receive — and deliver — Meals on Wheels, more than nutrition is on the menu” – The Boston Globe

meals on wheelsJessica Rinaldi/Globe Staff – Vito LaMura makes a Meals on Wheels delivery to Sally Neale in Lexington.

LEXINGTON — It’s a Tuesday ritual that Vito LaMura holds dear.

“On that day, the 71-year-old retired teacher drives from his Bedford home to Lexington Community Center, where he picks up more than a dozen Meals on Wheels packages. LaMura carefully lays out the bagged containers in his Mazda hatchback. Then he’s off on an 8-mile route — delivering food to housebound seniors who get by on Social Security, daily routines, and memories.

“The modest meals are crucial for those who receive them. So is the emotional nourishment. The state and federally funded Meals on Wheels program provides a daily visit for about 75,000 people over age 60 in Massachusetts. Many are hungry, isolated, and living in or near poverty. It’s a human connection to an outside world that can recede from view in later years. Many Meals on Wheels volunteers are retirees like LaMura. Some aren’t that much younger than the folks they visit. But most of them are focused on navigating their routes rather than peering into what could be their future. As he makes his rounds, it’s clear the program benefits LaMura as much as it does the recipients, whom he calls ‘my people.’ Their conversations come easily.”

Click here to continue reading this Boston Globe article.

BERKS COUNTY MEALS ON WHEELS INFORMATION

LANCASTER COUNTY MEALS ON WHEELS INFORMATION

LEBANON COUNTY MEALS ON WHEELS INFORMATION

 

 

Friday Wrap-Up, April 20, 2018 | a message from the Secretary of Aging

Each week the Office of the Secretary of Pennsylvania’s Department of Aging releases a Friday newsletter with information relevant to activities, issues and events for older Pennsylvanians and persons with disabilities across the Commonwealth. Click here download the newsletter as a .pdf file.

Friday Wrap-Up_04-20-18

“Robotics research supports aged care with cute AI animals” – WikiTribune

 

by robotics

  • As lifespans lengthen, the proportion of elderly in our populations is increasing, but how will they be supported?
  • Social robotics may take over many tasks in aged-care facilities and the home.
  • What does it say about humanity when we leave the care of our most vulnerable to machines?

“The world’s elderly population is surging, and in many countries health and home care services are already stretched. Researchers in New Zealand, with South Korean colleagues, are working on a project that suggests a different solution – robots. South Korea provides the robot-making expertise, and New Zealand the network of rest homes as testing grounds. Both countries have received funding from their governments to collaborate on health-bot projects.

“In Gisborne, on the east coast of New Zealand’s North Island, Lillian Neilson loves to sing those old songs from her youth. The staff and therapists of Selwyn Village in Auckland sometimes sing or hum along with her, turning to their phones to search for words she’s forgotten.

“‘I used to be a singer,’ she says. ‘You’ve heard of Daphne Walker [New Zealand star of the mid-20th century]? I was the young Daphne Walker.’

“But Neilson, 84, a mother of four and a former maternity nurse, doesn’t know any other Māori in the rest home, and few residents add their voices to hers.

“‘I do feel lonely, so I generally come in my room and I sing my songs. I put the telly on and sing the music that comes over.’ But Paro, a fluffy Canadian “seal” with large, fathomless eyes, provides a willing audience.”

Read this WikiTribune article in its entirety, click here.

signatures seal“Jordan Hall (left) and Victoria Warfel hold one of the therapeutic robotic harp seals.” – Lititz Record

SPECIAL NOTE: Robotic “Harp seals” are living at Signature Senior Living – Lancaster and Signature Senior Living – Lititz.

This December 2016 Lititz Record article about the grand opening a Signature Senior Living – Lititz included this about the robotic harp seals.

” … the hit of the open house were the PARO robotic harp seals. Jordan Hall, assistant director of the Lancaster facility, and Victoria Warfel RN, wellness director of the Lititz facility, explained the seals to interested guests. Warfel said that the seals are used in the memory support area. Seymour is the Lititz facility’s seal, while the Lancaster facility’s seal is named Lucy. Each robotic seal can recognize its name and residents’ voices as well as tone of voice. It and responds to being petted, cuddled and talked to and reproduces the sounds that a real harp seal makes in various situations.

“‘Harp seals were chosen because people don’t have expectations of a harp seal. If it were a cat or dog, people expect them to act in a certain way, and some people are allergic to cats and dogs or may be fearful of dogs. The harp seal can be whatever people want it to be, and it’s proven to reduce stress in patients,’ Warfel explained, adding that there are about 100 of the robotic seals in the US.”