Category

Health Disparities

Report: Older Women & Poverty

By | Economic Security, Health Care, Health Care Defense, Health Disparities, Health Equity, Long Term Care, Medicaid, Medicare, Nursing Homes, Oral Health, Safety Net Defense, SENIOR POVERTY, Social Security, Special Report, Supplemental Security Income

Because of structural inequities that impact women more than men, a significant percentage of older women are struggling to stay out of poverty.

There are 7.1 million older adults living in poverty in the United States, with nearly two out of three of them being women. Women like Venorica, who is working three jobs at the age of 70, and Vicky, who once ran a successful business with her husband, are struggling to stay afloat.

A new Justice in Aging report surveys the reasons more women are aging into poverty than men, discusses the support systems that are in place to help older women, and recommends ways we can strengthen and expand those support systems. The brief is accompanied by videos of women telling their own stories. Older women have cared for us and worked hard all of their lives. It’s imperative that we enact policies so they don’t have to struggle to make ends meet.

READ THE REPORT
WATCH THE VIDEOS HERE

New Medicare Fact Sheets for LGBTQ People

By | BLOG, Health Care, Health Disparities, HOMEPAGE, LGBT, Medicaid, Medicare
Ever since the Supreme Court first overturned the federal Defense of Marriage Act in 2013 and then, in 2015, making same-sex marriage legal in every state, there has been a flood of changes in how government programs address the needs of LGBT individuals. For people who qualify for Medicare, there are many important changes:

  • Married same sex couples now have coverage for Medicare and Medicaid under the same rules as opposite-sex married couples.
  • Transgender individuals have protection from discriminatory treatment in health care.

Read More

Improving the Oral Health of California’s Older Adults

By | BLOG, DUAL ELIGIBLES, Health Disparities, HOMEPAGE, Oral Health

Justice in Aging is excited to launch a new project: Improving Oral Health of California’s Older Adults. Oral health is a critical aspect of overall health for people of all ages, but especially for older adults. Unfortunately, the oral health needs of older adults, and particularly low-income older adults, in California have been neglected. As a result, older adults encounter significant challenges when attempting to access oral healthcare and consequently experience severe mouth pain, tooth loss, and the worsening of chronic conditions like diabetes, hypertension, and diabetes.

Read More

New Regulation Prohibits Discrimination in Health Care: Key Highlights for Aging Advocates

By | Affordable Care Act, BLOG, Health Care, Health Disparities, HOMEPAGE, Language Access, LGBT
Aging advocates working to promote health equity got some good news and extensive summer reading last week. After much anticipation, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released final regulations that seek to transform care for underserved communities by ending discrimination in health care services and settings. Read More

Voices of Medicare Summit Highlights Needs of Poor Seniors

By | BLOG, DUAL ELIGIBLES, Health Care, Health Disparities, HOMEPAGE, Medicaid, Medicare
At the third annual Center for Medicare Advocacy (CMA) Voices of Medicare Summit earlier this month, I was particularly struck by how many presenters focused on the key role of Medicare for low-income older Americans. In fact, CMS Deputy Administrator and Medicare Director Sean Cavanaugh started off the day by emphasizing CMS’s commitment to make Medicare work for all beneficiaries, including those who are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid.

I shouldn’t have been surprised. After all, half of all people on Medicare live on $24,000 or less a year, with 25% living on less than $14,000 a year. Read More

National Study Highlights Importance of Public Programs in Narrowing Life Expectancy Gap

By | BLOG, Health Disparities, HOMEPAGE, SENIOR POVERTY
“The end game faced by American seniors is defined in part by an un-level playing field, filled with resource disparities operating on both the individual and neighborhood levels.” This theory described by sociologist Corey Abramson, that inequality shapes aging, gained momentum this week with the release of a major study on life expectancy inequality in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). Read More

Advancing Health Equity for Older Adults

By | Affordable Care Act, BLOG, Health Care, Health Disparities, HOMEPAGE, Language Access, LGBT, Medicaid, Medicare, Nursing Homes
When John’s partner, Jack, moved into a nursing facility, the staff, who were uncomfortable assisting a gay man, let 16 days pass before helping him take a shower. “He was finally taken in for a shower by a staff member with empathy,” John shared. Afraid of future neglect and discrimination, John began checking Jack out of the nursing facility and bringing him home to their apartment to help Jack shower and shave.

John should not have to worry about a nursing facility neglecting Jack due to his sexual orientation. As an 83 year-old caregiver, John should not face the additional burden of replacing Jack’s neglected care. Read More

Ten Things You Should Know About Language Access Advocacy for Older Adults

By | BLOG, DUAL ELIGIBLES, Health Disparities, HOMEPAGE, Language Access

Last month, CMS announced a first-ever plan to address health equity in Medicare. One of the major priorities is to improve communication and language access for individuals with Limited English Proficiency (LEP). This is important because of the sheer numbers of people it affects and because language barriers are a major cause of low-income older adults being unable to access the health care they need. Here are ten things you should know about language access advocacy for older adults.

Read More

CMS to Address Health Equity in Medicare

By | BLOG, Health Care, Health Disparities, HOMEPAGE, Medicare

For the first time, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has published a plan to address health equity in Medicare. The plan, developed by the Office of Minority Health, will focus on populations that experience barriers to accessing care and lower quality of care. These include rural residents, Limited English Proficiency (LEP) individuals, racial and ethnic minorities, people with disabilities, and LGBT individuals. The plan aims to reduce health disparities in four years, and focuses on six priorities.

Read More