Category Archives: Events & Actvities

“‘Mom, I didn’t steal your dentures’: Coping when dementia turns to delusion” – Philly.com

mom“Hallucinations, delusions and paranoia are features of dementia as well as memory loss.” – Philly.com

“Many people think of dementia solely as a condition that causes memory loss.

“That’s one reason family caregivers may be so surprised and upset when older relatives start having major psychiatric symptoms such as hallucinations, delusions or paranoia, even though they are common features of dementia.

“Another reason, said Linda Shumaker, a nurse who works with older adults with behavioral health problems, is that stigma has kept advocates and caregivers from talking openly about psychiatric problems that can increase stress and result in earlier placement in a nursing home.

SHUMAKER Linda Shumaker is a nurse who works with older adults with behavioral health problems.

“Shumaker, who works as outreach coordinator for the Pennsylvania Behavioral Health and Aging Coalition, a Harrisburg-based group (and a partner entity with the Pennsylvania Link to Aging and Disability Resources) seeking better care for elders with mental illness and addictions, was a speaker … ”

Read this article in its entirety at Philly.com – click here.

 

Friday Wrap-Up, July 7, 2017 | 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 to download the newsletter as a .pdf file.

 

Governor Wolf Commends Passage of Bipartisan General Appropriations Bill, Commits to Finishing Budget

Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf released the following statement on the major bipartisan support in both the House and Senate for the compromise General Appropriations bill:

“Over the past two years, Republicans and Democrats have worked together to make progress for the people of Pennsylvania.

“After decades of failure, we passed pension reform that will put Pennsylvania on the path to a sustainable fiscal future, save taxpayers billions, and reduce payments to Wall Street fund managers. This budget fully funds our pension obligations. We passed the most significant liquor reform since prohibition. We set our differences aside, and made real changes for customers and taxpayers.

“After years of devastating education cuts, we have restored more than $800 million in education funding. I am going to keep fighting to fix our schools, but this budget represents one of the most significant investments in schools in our lifetime. And we passed a fair funding formula, taking Pennsylvania off a shameful list of states without a way to fairly fund their schools. This budget keeps investing in schools.

“Together, we’ve fought the heroin and opioid crisis that continues to plague our communities. We have developed treatment options and provided lifesaving medicine, but we know the crisis has not abated so we’re continuing to fight by making drug courts available to low level offenders so those who are struggling can get treatment.

“Today, we finalized a general appropriations bill. It’s a start, and it’s not everything I wanted or everything Republicans wanted, but unlike D.C., we can compromise and get things done just like when we passed bipartisan pension reform and bipartisan liquor reform.

“This budget includes much of the savings, efficiencies, and cuts I proposed in February in my budget address. But we avoided deep, indiscriminate cuts that would have endangered our ability to deliver services to the people of Pennsylvania.

Click here to read this news release in its entirety.

“Emily’s 18th Birthday”

by Melissa Ortiz, Commissioner, Administration on Disabilities

“Eighteen years ago today, the Supreme Court issued a landmark ruling in the case Olmstead v. L.C. The court ruled that under the Americans with Disabilities Act, people with disabilities cannot be unnecessarily segregated and must receive services in the most integrated setting possible.

“In other words, if someone is able to live in the community with appropriate services and supports, they should have the choice to do so.

“The ruling acknowledged the existence of resource limitations, but it also said states should take “reasonable steps” to provide community-based alternatives to institutions. That has increased the availability and quality of services in the community for people with disabilities.

“It also has changed government spending. In 1999, Medicaid spent nearly three times more on long-term services and supports provided in institutions like nursing homes than it did on services in the community. By 2013, a majority of that funding was going toward services and supports in the community.

“To illustrate what that has meant for people with disabilities, let’s imagine a baby born with cerebral palsy on the day of the ruling, June 22, 1999.”

Continue reading this article at the Administration for Community Living Website.

New Innovations in Nutrition Programs and Services Grant Opportunity to Promote the Quality and Effectiveness of Nutrition Service Programs

The Administration on Aging (AoA), part of the Administration for Community Living (ACL), announces a new grant opportunity to increase the evidenced based knowledge base of nutrition providers, drive improved health outcomes for program recipients by promoting higher service quality, and increase program efficiency through innovative nutrition service delivery models.

This funding opportunity is to support innovative and promising practices that move the aging network towards evidenced based practices that enhance the quality, effectiveness of nutrition services programs or outcomes within the aging services network. Innovation can include service products that appeal to caregivers (such as web-based ordering systems and carryout food products), increased involvement of volunteers (such as retired chefs), consideration of eating habits and choice (such as variable meal times, salad bars, or more fresh fruits and vegetables), new service models (testing variations and hybrid strategies) and other innovations to better serve a generation of consumers whose needs and preferences are different.

Please visit the link here for more details about the grant opportunity and application process. This grant opportunity closes on August 7, 2017.

Friday Wrap-Up, June 16, 2017 | 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 to download the newsletter as a .pdf file.

 

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) seeks public input on reducing the regulatory burdens of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA)

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued a Request for Information (RFI) seeking recommendations and input from the public on how to create a more flexible, streamlined approach to the regulatory structure of the individual and small group markets. The goal is to identify and eliminate or change regulations that are outdated, unnecessary, or ineffective; impose costs that exceed benefits; or create inconsistencies that otherwise interfere with regulatory reform initiatives and policies.

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is looking for feedback on regulations under the ACA to determine whether each rule advances or impedes priorities for stabilizing the individual and small group health insurance markets; empowers patients and promotes consumer choice; enhances affordability; and returns regulatory authority to the states. Regulations under review include Essential Health Benefits and Actuarial Value, among others.

Feedback can include providing input to improve rules, maintain rules, change rules, remove rules, and more. Some areas for specific requested feedback, include:

  • Empowering patients and promoting consumer choice.  What activities would best inform consumers and help them choose a plan that best meets their needs?
  • Enhancing affordability.  What steps can HHS take to enhance the affordability of coverage for individual consumers and small businesses?
  • Protecting individual independence. How can HHS enhance the opportunities of older adults and people with disabilities to participate in their communities and access the supports they need?

Aging and disability community-based organizations and other groups may wish to provide feedback for these populations and their caregivers and/or family members.

The RFI will be open for public comment for 30 days.

View the Request for Information and details for submitting public comment.

Friday Wrap-Up, June 9, 2017 | 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 to download the newsletter as a .pdf file. 

 

Attention area veterans! Did you know there’s a Veterans Mental Health Council? With monthly meetings at the VA Medical Center in Lebanon.

VA mental health council

Click on the graphic above to download the brochure for more information.

Friday Wrap-Up, May 26, 2017 | 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 to download the newsletter as a .pdf file.