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The National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care

August 27, 2013

Consumer Voice Hosts Webinar on Home Care for Virginians

On July 18, 2013 the Consumer Voice hosted a free webinar for individuals in Virginia titled, "A Webinar for Virginians - What You Need to Know About Medicaid Waivers."  Medicaid home and community based waiver programs provide support to people with disabilities so that they can live successfully in the community. Currently in Virginia, there are six different waiver programs. Eligibility and supports within each of these programs vary based on the needs and restrictions established by the state. The purpose of the webinar was to educate individuals about the various options.  
This webinar covered the following topics:
•         Eligibility criteria
•         Waiver services
•         How to beign the process
•         Other Medicaid benefits
•         An overview of the ombudsman program and how it relates to home care advocacy

During this webinar, participants heard from leading experts in the field. To access the recording, click here. To access the PowerPoint slides and webinar materials, click here.  

This webinar was part of a 3-year Consumers for Quality Care, No Matter Where initiative where the Consumer Voice is working in 5 pilot states.  To learn more about the initiative, click here.

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Long-Term Care Commission Holds Public Hearing on Delivery and Workforce Issues in LTSS

On Tuesday, August 20th, the Long-Term Care Commission held its final public hearing, which focused on addressing delivery and workforce issues in long-term services and supports. Charlene Harrington, PhD, a leading researcher on long-term care nursing and quality from the University of California at San Francisco  (and past member of the Consumer Voice Leadership Council), presented testimony to the commission in the hearing's panel on workforce issues. Dr. Harrington's testimony highlighted the ongoing crisis of understaffing in our nation's nursing homes and the impact of understaffing on residents' care. A recording of the hearing can be viewed on the commission's website here, along with the testimonies from the hearing's witnesses.
The Commission is now tasked with forming recommendations to present to Congress by the end of September on a plan for the establishment, implementation, and financing of a comprehensive, coordinated and high-quality long-term care system. Consumer Voice looks forward to reviewing these recommendations and will be certain to share them with our network upon their release.

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Volunteer Ombudsman Featured in Money Magazine

Volunteer Ombudsman for the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services Elizabeth Bispo was featured in an article in the September issue of Money Magazine.  As a retired nurse, Ms. Bispo began volunteering in 2009.  Though she is only required to visit monthly, she visits four facilities in Fredericksburg, Texas weekly.  She helps address financial problems in the facilities.  Ms. Bispo's article is out in hard copy of Money Magazine and is forthcoming online.

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CMS Memo on Sprinkler Systems in Nursing Homes

A recent memo from CMS covers automatic sprinkler systems in nursing homes.  All nursing homes must be fully sprinklered as of August 13, 2013 in order to participate in Medicare or Medicaid.  While CMS is not requiring any special surveys focused on the sprinkler requirement, a life safety code inspection is part of each facility's recertification survey.  As these surveys occur during the year, facilities that are not fully sprinklered on or after August 13, 2013 will be cited for a deficiency.  The memo includes a list of how many facilities in each state are without sprinklers.  For more information, read the full memo.

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Advancing Excellence Announces Nine New Quality Goals, Toolkits and Webinar

In a recent press release, the Advancing Excellence Campaign announced its completion of nine new quality goals and toolkits which will be featured in a free webinar on September 10th. The nine new goals include process and clinical goals.  "We are very excited to announce our nine quality goals and free toolkits," said Dr. David Gifford, MD, MPH, SVP, Quality & Regulatory Affairs, AHCA and Co-Chair, Advancing Excellence Campaign.  "This effort demonstrates the Campaign's ongoing commitment to make nursing homes better places to live, work and visit."  For more information, read the press release.  Register for the webinar here.

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National Preparedness Community Holding Long-Term Care Disaster Conference in 2014

The National Preparedness Community is holding a "Really Ready 4" Long-Term Care Disaster Conference from January 28-29, 2014 in San Diego.  This biennial conference provides the most up-to-date information in regards to emergency preparedness, response and recovery for long-term care providers.  The conference will present experts from across the country speaking on topics such as: Mutual Aid Planning, Crisis Communication, Psychological First Aid, Disaster Recovery & Repopulation, Financial Survival in an Emergency, Emergency and Continuity Planning, and more.  For more information and to register, click here.

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About The Gazette

The Gazette is a weekly e-newsletter, published by the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care and the National Long-Term Care Ombudsman Resource Center. If you do not wish to continue receiving this publication, please unsubscribe. Your contributions and comments are welcome and should be sent to swells@theconsumervoice.org. Copyright © 2013.

The Consumer Voice is the leading national voice representing consumers in issues related to long-term care, helping to ensure that consumers are empowered to advocate for themselves. We are a primary source of information and tools for consumers, families, caregivers, advocates and ombudsmen to help ensure quality care for the individual. The Consumer Voice's mission is to represent consumers at the national level for quality long-term care, services and supports.

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National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care - 1001 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 425 - Washington, DC 20036 - telephone: (202) 332-2275 - fax: (202) 332-2949 - info@theconsumervoice.org