Category Archives: Uncategorized

Webinar: Promising Practices for Meeting the Behavioral Health Needs of Dually Eligible Older Adults | Thursday, August 2, 2018, 2:00-3:30 PM ET

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In the U.S., 25% adults age 65 or older experience a behavioral health issue, yet only 3% of them report seeking treatment from a behavioral health professional. Those who are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid have high rates of behavioral health conditions compared to beneficiaries with Medicare only. For example, among individuals 65 or older, 19% of dually eligible beneficiaries were diagnosed with a depressive disorder compared to 8% of Medicare-only beneficiaries, and 11% of dually eligible beneficiaries were diagnosed with an anxiety disorder compared to 6% of Medicare-only beneficiaries.

This interactive webinar will discuss common behavioral health conditions and related challenges among dually eligible older adults, identify best practices for treatment options and care coordination, and demonstrate practical strategies for meeting beneficiary needs. Speakers will discuss firsthand experiences, lessons learned, and strategies to coordinate care across diverse settings.

Register here!

Friday Wrap-Up, July 13, 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.


“Patient reports suggest it’s better to avoid catheters” – Futurity

catheters(Credit: Getty Images)

“More than half of hospital patients who get a urinary catheter experienced a complication, in-depth interviews and chart reviews from more than 2,000 patients show.

“The new study, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, puts large-scale evidence behind what many hospital patients already know: Having a urinary catheter may help empty the bladder—but it can also be painful, lead to urinary tract infections, and cause other issues in the hospital and beyond.”

Continue reading this article at, click here.



Free publications about suicide offered by SAMHSA (The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration)

after an attempt

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has provided several helpful documents for persons interested or involved with suicide.

A Guide to Taking Care of Your Family Member After Treatment in the Emergency Department

SAMHSA has published an update to this guide that offers information about what to expect in the emergency room, and how to take care of yourself and your family member following a suicide attempt. This guide is also available in Spanish language.

A Guide to Taking Care of Yourself After Your Treatment in the Emergency Department

SAMHSA has published an update to this guide that offers strategies for taking care of yourself after treatment in the emergency department for a suicide attempt. The guide also offers ways to connect with other suicide attempt survivors. This guide is also available in Spanish language.

A Guide for Medical Providers in the Emergency Department Taking Care of Suicide Attempt Survivors

SAMHSA has published an update to this brochure that offers emergency department providers tips for enhancing treatment for people who have attempted suicide. It also offers information about communicating with families, HIPAA, patient discharge, and resources for medical professionals, patients, and their families.

Department of Human Services Announces Successful Transition of Hamburg State Center Residents to Community-Based Settings

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Harrisburg, PA – The Department of Human Services (DHS) Secretary Teresa Miller today announced the Hamburg State Center for people with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities will officially close on August 3, 2018. The closure of Hamburg Center will come 19 months after the January 11, 2017, announcement of the planned closure of the facility, which is in Berks County. There were 80 individuals living at the center in January 2017.

“Research shows that when an individual with an intellectual or developmental disability lives in a community setting, quality of life improves, and more opportunities arise for social participation, community integration, relationships with family and friends, and employment,” said DHS Secretary Miller. “Transitioning residents of the Hamburg State Center will help them grow and thrive in new ways and sets the foundation for a long-term increased quality of life.”

The Hamburg closure is part of the Wolf Administration’s commitment to reduce reliance on institutional care, serve more people in the community, and most importantly, make it possible for people to live an everyday life, as their fellow citizens do.

Growth in community services around the commonwealth is making it possible for individuals residing in institutional settings to move to the community and for individuals on waiting lists to get services they need to fully participate in community life.

Community-based living increases quality of life for individuals with disabilities. Being involved in community life creates opportunities for new experiences and interests, the potential to develop friendships, and the ability to make a contribution to the community. An interdependent life, where people with and without disabilities are connected, enriches the lives of everyone.

The Office of Administration, Human Resources, and Labor Relations have been able to secure employment opportunities for the majority of the 351 employees who were employed at Hamburg Center. Most of the employees have either transferred to other commonwealth employment opportunities or have retired.

SOURCE: news release

Friday Wrap-Up, July 6, 2018 | a message from the Secretary of Aging

secy message

“The latest blood pressure guidelines: What they mean for you” – The Conversation

new blood pressureNew blood pressure guidelines from the American Heart Association. CC BY-SA

by John Warner

Updated blood pressure guidelines from the American Heart Association mean that many more Americans, notably older people, are now diagnosed with high blood pressure, or hypertension. This may sound like bad news, but the new guidelines highlight some important lessons we cardiologists and heart health researchers have learned from the latest blood pressure studies. Specifically, we have learned that damage from high blood pressure starts at much lower blood pressures than previously thought and that it is more important than ever to start paying attention to your blood pressure before it starts causing problems.

“High blood pressure accounts for more heart disease and stroke deaths than all other preventable causes, except smoking.”

Read this article in its entirety at The Conversation.

FILLED UP – no more seats available for the June 28 Community Health Choices seminar!


PLEASE NOTE all the seating for this Link event is gone. Parking will be at a premium; if you can “RIDE SHARE” with someone, it will be greatly appreciates.

Hamilton Relay seeks nominations for 2018 Deaf Community Leader Award

hamilton relay

Download the questionnaire to nominate an individual, click here.

Community HealthChoices “delivery of service coordination”

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Though the counties in Service Area 13 — Berks, Lancaster, Lebanon — are not impacted until January 2019, we wanted to share this information.

REMINDER: Many of our partners in Service Area 13’s footprint will be attending the special Community HealthChoices seminar on June 18.

In preparation for the launch of Community HealthChoices (CHC) in the Southeast region, the above CHC Fact Sheet explains the delivery of service coordination through the program. Under CHC, service coordination is a function of the managed care organizations (MCOs). A service coordinator is the MCO’s designated, accountable point-of-contact for each participant receiving long-term care services, their person-centered service plan, and service coordination. Therefore, the Office of Long-Term Living sees the service coordinators as part of the MCO under CHC.

Trainings | In addition to the fact sheets, the department has developed short, easily digestible overview trainings on CHC that can be found here. We encourage everyone to take the time to review the training and increase their knowledge in anticipation of the Southeast rollout and to familiarize themselves with the program.

Additional resources | To assist stakeholders in finding answers to questions more quickly, we recently consolidated all FAQs into a single CHC Questions and Answers Document.  The new document is in searchable PDF format and contains a table of contents that allows the user to easily move to different sections within the document.

The CHC Questions and Answers Document can be found on both the Participant and Provider sections of the CHC website by clicking on “View CHC Publications” or by following this link:

Please note: | The individual FAQ documents have been removed from the CHC website.  All questions and answers are now on one document.

CONTACT:  If you have any questions, please visit or submit comments electronically to

A listserv has been established for ongoing updates on the CHC program. It is titled OLTL-COMMUNITY-HEALTHCHOICES, please visit the ListServ Archives page at to update or register your email address.

Please share with other members of your organization as appropriate. Also, it is imperative that you notify the Office of Long-Term Living for changes that would affect your provider file, such as addresses and telephone numbers. Mail to/pay to addresses, email addresses, and phone numbers may be updated electronically through ePEAP, which can be accessed through the PROMISe™ provider portal. For any other provider file changes please notify the Bureau of Quality and Provider Management Enrollment and Certification Section at 1-800-932-0939 Option #1.

To ensure you receive email communications distributed from the Office of Long-Term Living, please visit the ListServ Archives page at to update or register your email address.