Category

Medicare

Free Webcast: Protecting Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services During COVID-19

By | Home & Community Based Services, Long Term Care, Medicaid, Medicare, WEBINAR, Webinar Trainings

During the COVID-19 crisis, it has become clear that the ability to receive services and care at home and in the community is critical to keeping people safe and healthy and to help stop the spread of the virus. Unfortunately, however, there are multiple barriers to adequate access to Medicaid home and community-based services (HCBS).

A lack of investment in HCBS by federal and state governments, scarcity of personal protective equipment for home care workers, and state cuts to HCBS programs to address budget shortfalls threaten existing HCBS infrastructure and put the lives of millions of seniors and people with disabilities at risk.

In this webcast, you will hear from disability, aging, and state advocates on what actions you can take to protect and maintain access to HCBS in your state. The webcast will include:

  • An overview of HCBS advocacy at the federal level;
  • A summary of available funding for community-based providers to respond to COVID-19; and
  • Discussion of advocacy tools to maintain HCBS infrastructure and to combat efforts to cut HCBS in state budgets.

Who should participate:
Aging and disability advocates who want to learn how to protect Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services.

Presenters:
Nicole Jorwic, Senior Director of Public Policy, The Arc
Amber Christ, Directing Attorney, Justice in Aging
State Advocates from Washington and Oklahoma

The webcast took place on Thursday, July 9, 11:00 a.m. PT/2:00 p.m. ET.

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Some Nursing Homes Escaped COVID-19-Here’s What they Did Right

By | Health Care, Health Equity, Home & Community Based Services, IN THE NEWS, Medicaid, Medicare, Nursing Homes, Person-Centered Care Planning

Wired: Some Nursing Homes Escaped COVID-19-Here’s What they Did Right (May 29, 2020)

Cmiel’s staff stocked up on personal protective equipment and masks for workers and residents; screened everyone who walked in the door for symptoms; hired more staff to clean bathrooms and common areas; and started educating everyone on best practices for containing the virus. And while nursing homes account for nearly half of California’s coronavirus fatalities, at the SFCJL not a single resident has tested positive for the virus. Not all facilities were so lucky. A better approach to keep older people safe from Covid-19 would be to care for them in their homes, keeping them out of long-term residential settings. “There should be a continuum of care, and institutional care should really be reserved for people who need it, who can’t be successful and safe in their own homes,” said Claire Ramsey, Senior Staff Attorney at Justice in Aging.

Free Webinar: Health Care Rights for Older Adults During COVID-19

By | CA Health Network Alert, Health Care, Medicare, WEBINAR

Older adults and people with disabilities are one of the populations most susceptible to both COVID-19 and the effects of related physical distancing mandates. Many advocates and other service providers working with older adults may have questions about the rights of older adults and the impact of COVID-19 and related relief measures on healthcare.

This free webinar, co-organized by Justice in Aging and California Health Advocates Senior Medicare Patrol, will discuss health care rights under Medicare and Medi-Cal for older adults during the COVID-19 pandemic, including increased flexibilities and requirements for Medicare Advantage, Part D and Cal MediConnect plans, the moratorium on Medi-Cal negative actions, special enrollment periods under Medicare, the impact of relief efforts on Medi-Cal benefits, guaranteed issue events for Medigap, and more.

Who should participate:
Legal services attorneys and aging and disability service providers, including HICAP staff and volunteers.

Presenters:
Denny Chan, Justice in Aging
Bonnie Burns, California Health Advocates

The webinar took place on Thursday, May 28, from 10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. PT.

Closed captioning will be available during this webinar. A link with access to the captions will be shared through GoToWebinar’s chat box shortly before the webinar start time.

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Rethinking How America Cares for its Elderly

By | Health Disparities, Health Equity, Home & Community Based Services, IN THE NEWS, Medicaid, Medicare

Street Roots: Rethinking How America Cares for its Elderly (May 26, 2020)

Before COVID-19 sent the United States hurdling toward a devastating economic recession, 37 million adults aged 50 and older were already living in poverty — with another 10 million on the brink. Like it has with so many other social issues in the U.S., the coronavirus pandemic has illuminated the economic hardship and isolation facing many of our nation’s senior citizens, and the lack of value placed on the people who care for them. Executive Director Kevin Prindiville was interviewed for this article. “We’ve underinvested in our Medicaid programs and long-term care programs that help people stay home and in their community, which leaves many families with the only option to move an older family member into an institution,” Prindiville said.

Op-Ed: Revised Budget Puts Older Californians, Communities at Risk

By | Health Disparities, Health Equity, IN THE NEWS, Medicare

Cal Matters: Op-Ed: Revised Budget Puts Older Californians, Communities at Risk (May 26, 2020)

During a public health crisis like this, few things are more important than making sure people can access health care. But somehow in the budget revision, it’s health care that gets the biggest cut; and not just health care for anyone – it cuts health programs that older adults with low incomes rely on. Older Californians are not expendable. They are vital members of our families and communities who built a state strong enough to weather this storm. The governor and the Legislature need to come up with a final budget that respects and protects them. This op-ed was co-authored by Claire Ramsey, Senior Staff Attorney at Justice in Aging, and Linda Nguy, Health Policy Advocate at Western Center on Law & Poverty

Medicare Applications Raise Anxiety for Seniors in Pandemic

By | IN THE NEWS, Medicare, Newsroom, Social Security

Associated Press: Medicare Applications Raise Anxiety for Seniors in Pandemic, (April 29, 2020)

This article discusses how difficult it is for seniors to apply for Medicare during the COVID-19 pandemic because Social Security determines eligibility for Part B, and Social Security offices are closed and working at diminished capacity. Additionally, people over 65 who were still working and had health insurance through work and are now getting laid off, face significant barriers in getting through the Medicare application process. Advocates would like seniors to be held harmless from penalties for failing to apply on time. The reporter interviewed Justice in Aging attorney, Natalie Kean, for the piece who said, “Going through the normal channels is just going to be slow, and it’s not responsive to the increased need right now.”

Free Webcast: Medicare Coverage and COVID-19

By | DUAL ELIGIBLES, Health Care, Medicaid, Medicare, WEBINAR, Webinar Trainings

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and new legislation have changed many of the rules in Medicare to respond to COVID-19. This webcast focuses on the changes to Medicare that most impact low-income older adults.

Who should participate:
Aging and legal advocates serving older adult Medicare beneficiaries who want to learn more about navigating the changes at CMS on behalf of their clients.

Presenters:
Amber Christ, Directing Attorney, Justice in Aging
Natalie Kean, Senior Staff Attorney, Justice in Aging

This webcast took place on Tuesday, April 14, 2020, at 11:00 a.m. PT/2:00 p.m. ET.

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Economic challenges face elderly Americans during Covid-19 shutdowns

By | Economic Security, Health Care, IN THE NEWS, Medicaid, Medicare

KFTK St. Louis, The Randy Tobler Show: Economic challenges face elderly Americans during COVID-19 shutdowns, (April 7, 2020)

Amber Christ, Directing Attorney with Justice in Aging, joined Randy to discuss the challenges elderly Americans face during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Following the passage of the CARES Act, rebates were approved to help stimulate the economy, $1200 dollars per person which most will be received automatically.  This also includes those that receive Social Security retirement or Social Security Disability. Amber discusses, this as well as some of the health care provisions in the CARES Act.

Summary: How States are Modifying HCBS Programs to Address COVID-19 Emergency

By | Health Care, Home & Community Based Services, Medicaid, Medicare, REPORTS

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has begun reviewing and approving states’ emergency requests to modify their home and community-based services (HCBS) waivers. These approvals, documented through CMS’ Appendix K form, list the many modifications that CMS has approved in the past week.

As an aid to advocates, providers, and policy-makers, Justice in Aging is reviewing and summarizing the CMS approvals pertaining to aging-focused HCBS waivers. This summarized information, organized by the same categories used in Appendix K, can be a guide for advocates and others to identify useful modifications and flag others that may be problematic or otherwise unwanted.

Free Webinar: Updates on Public Charge & Older Immigrants

By | Medicaid, Medicare, Safety Net Defense, WEBINAR

When: Monday, March 9, 2020 from 11 -11:30 am PT/2-2:30 pm ET

In January, the U.S. Supreme Court removed the nationwide temporary injunction that had prevented the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) public charge immigration rule from taking effect. This means that the public charge rule that DHS finalized last August can go into effect nationwide, except in Illinois, where it is blocked by a statewide injunction. DHS announced that it will begin implementing the final rule on February 24th.

The Supreme Court’s decision endangers the health and well-being of older immigrants and their families and cruelly impedes the path to citizenship and family unification. However, it is not a final decision and we must continue to fight to stop this harmful policy from becoming permanent. The multiple cases challenging the underlying legality of the final public charge rule will continue in the courts. DHS has appealed all the district court decisions that issued preliminary injunctions to the Second, Fourth, Seventh, and Ninth Circuits. DHS has also asked the U.S. Supreme Court to hear the case.

Justice in Aging and our partners have filed amicus briefs in the Second and Ninth Circuits to ask the court to affirm the district courts’ nationwide injunctions and to highlight the ways in which this rule unfairly targets older immigrants, their families, and caregivers. This webinar, Updates on Public Charge & Older Immigrants, will begin with an overview of the public charge test and how it applies to older adults, discuss the current state of litigation, and provide information on what advocates need to know about the rule’s implementation.

Who should participate:
Aging and legal advocates, advocates serving immigrant communities, community-based providers, and others wanting to learn more about how changes to the public charge test and implementation of the new regulations impact older immigrants.

Presenter:
Denny Chan, Senior Staff Attorney, Justice in Aging
Natalie Kean, Senior Staff Attorney, Justice in Aging

This webinar took place on Monday, March 9, 2020, from 11 -11:30 am PT/2-2:30 pm ET. 

Closed captioning will be available during this webinar. A link with access to the captions will be shared through GoToWebinar’s chat box shortly before the webinar start time.

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