Category

LGBT

New Medicare Fact Sheets for LGBTQ People

By | BLOG, Health Care, Health Disparities, HOMEPAGE, LGBT, Medicaid, Medicare | No Comments
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.

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July 5: Immediate Changes to Medicaid Managed Care

By | BLOG, Health Care, HOMEPAGE, Language Access, LGBT, Long Term Care, Medicaid | No Comments
On July 5, the first wave of new Medicaid managed care regulation requirements go into effect. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published the final Medicaid managed care rule this spring, introducing sweeping changes to how the federal government will regulate the entities that manage long-term services and supports (LTSS). While many of regulation’s big ticket items will be implemented over the course of the year, a few important pieces go live this summer. Justice in Aging will discuss these changes in a free webinar on June 30. Here’s a short list of some of the items we’ll be discussing. 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 | No Comments
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

Big Win For Married LGBT SSI Recipients

By | BLOG, HOMEPAGE, LGBT, LITIGATION, Supplemental Security Income | No Comments
The last few weeks have brought some good news regarding Held v. Colvin, a case we (along with Foley Hoag LLP and GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders, or GLAD) filed in March 2015 against the Social Security Administration (SSA) on behalf of Plaintiffs Hugh Held and Kelley Richardson-Wright and a proposed nationwide class.

We filed this case to stop SSA from attempting to collect “overpayments” from very low income people over 65 and people with disabilities receiving SSI who had been married to someone of the same sex on or before June 2013 when the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). 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 | No Comments
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

WEBINAR: Prohibiting Health Services Discrimination: Proposed Rule and Insight for Aging Advocates

By | Health Care, LGBT, WEBINAR | No Comments
When: Wednesday, October 28 at 2:00 p.m. ET

Recent proposed regulations released by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) provide a unique opportunity to address discrimination in health care settings, including new provisions to address language access, gender identity discrimination, and access for individuals with disabilities.  The proposed regulations, which were issued to implement Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act, represent a positive first step toward improving health equity. Advocates for older adults should seize the opportunity to significantly strengthen the regulations by participating in the comment process.

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LGBT Older Adults in Long-Term Care Facilities: Stories from the Field

By | LGBT, Long Term Care, REPORTS | No Comments
Imagine being out and proud all of your adult life and then moving into a long-term care facility and having to go back into the closet because you don’t feel safe coming out to staff and other residents. Imagine being dismissed and disrespected when you advocate strongly for the rights of your same-sex companion while she’s being cared for in a nursing home. Imagine feeling like you have to endure homophobic comments from a personal care worker assigned to you because you’re afraid of how he’ll treat you if you speak up.

These anecdotes are not only true; they’re common experiences for LGBT older adults. And they’re all in our ground-breaking report, LGBT Older Adults in Long-Term Care Facilities: Stories from the Field. Published in 2010, the report is still making waves in policy circles. In honor of Pride 2015, we’re re-releasing a fresh version of the report for those who may have missed it, along with its accompanying video.

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Social Security Continues Discriminating Against Same Sex Married Couples By Making Them Pay Thousands of Dollars for Agency Mistake

By | BLOG, HOMEPAGE, LGBT, LITIGATION, Supplemental Security Income | No Comments
Hugh Held and Orion Masters of Los Angeles, hugh-orienCalifornia have been together for more than 20 years. When marriage to a person of the same sex became legal in California for a brief period in 2008, they were excited to ‘take the plunge’ and exercise a right they did not expect they would ever have when they first met. Little did they anticipate that their marriage would one day put them in economic peril.

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CMS Releases More Windsor Guidance on Medicaid

By | Health Care, LGBT, Medicaid, Medicare, REPORTS | No Comments

REPORT

July 2014 — One-year after the Supreme Court’s landmark decision in United States v. Windsor, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) continues to release guidance on same-sex marriages and Medicare and Medicaid. CMS recently issued a letter to state Medicaid Directors with guidance on the implication of the decision for non-MAGI Medicaid populations. The guidance gives states the discretion to apply either the IRS’ marriage recognition policy, which recognizes any marriage that is valid in the jurisdiction of celebration, or the state’s own marriage recognition law when determining whether a couple is lawfully married for purposes of Medicaid eligibility.

The guidance is consistent with CMS policy that the agency had previously announced for MAGI Medicaid financial determinations. States will be revising their Medicaid policies in light of the CMS guidance. The guidance also assists same-sex couples and their advocates in understanding how marriage can either positively or negatively affect their ability to access Medicaid benefits. In a more detailed explanation and an upcoming webinar, Justice in Aging provides more detail on the guidance.