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November 4, 2014

CMS Reports Reduced Antipsychotic Use in Nursing Homes - Is It Time to Celebrate?

According to the most recent quarterly figures from CMS, antipsychotic use for long-stay nursing home residents has decreased 18.8% under the National Partnership to Improve Dementia Care in Nursing Homes, a nationwide initiative that started in 2012.  In September, the Partnership announced that long-term care provideres had met the initiative's goal of 15% reduction as of the first quarter of 2014, and it set a new goal of 25% reduction by the end of 2015.  Read the report from CMS.  The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has found that these medications have an increased risk for death in elderly patients with dementia and should not be administered to them.

The CMS report highlights reduced usage of antipsychotics among nursing home residents, but accepts the fact that the new goals will still mean that nearly one of every five nursing home residents will continue to receive these medications, quite often inappropriately. These figures are particularly disturbing given that use of antipsychotics may be under-reported and because so many people with dementia are now treated in assisted living and homecare, making it difficult to assess how effective the reduction program is or whether the problem is being diverted to other LTC modalities.  For more information about the misuse of antipsychotics, visit the Consumer Voice's issue page.

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Thank You for a Successful 2014 Residents' Rights Month!

Thank you to all those who participated in this year's Residents' Rights Month.  Events across the country celebrated residents' rights and raised awareness for this year's theme - "Better Staffing: The Key to Better Care."  See photos and details from this year's events nationwide on our website.

Special pricing for Residents' Rights Month Calendars has been extended! Purchase a calendar now.

Show your support of the Consumer Voice's staffing campaign and the 2014 Residents' Rights Month theme with a "Better Staffing: The Key to Better Care" 2015 Calendar.  This 12-month calendar (beginning January 2015) includes photos, quotes, poems and artwork from long-term care consumers and staff members.  The focus of the calendar is better staffing with resident comments centering around what staffing means to them, how staff members have helped them, and how staffing can be improved in their facility; plus special focus on nursing home regulations that highlight quality care.

Calendars are still available for the special price of $14!

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Pressure Ulcer Prevention Day is November 20th

The National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel (NPUAP) has announced that World Wide Pressure Ulcer Prevention Day will be celebrated November 20, 2014. The objective of World Wide Pressure Ulcer Prevention Day is to increase national awareness for pressure ulcer prevention and to educate the public on this topic.  Media materials and resources are available on NPUAP's website.

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Congratulations 2014 Consumer Voice Leadership Award Winners

Thank you to those that nominated individuals and organizations for our annual Leadership Awards. The nominees are all extraordinary advocates and choosing the recipients was quite difficult. The recipients will receive their awards during our Annual Conference in November.

The winners are:
Janet Tulloch Memorial Advocacy Award
Kathy Keegan Clare, co-founder Family Council at Belvoir Woods, VA

Cernoria Johnson Memorial Advocacy Award
Jacqueline "Jackie” Majoros, VT State LTC Ombudsman
Esther Houser, OK State LTC Ombudsman

Howard Hinds Memorial Award
Janet Tadsen, Associate Ombudsman, Advocates for Basic Legal Equality, OH LTC Ombudsman Program

Toby S. Edelman Legal Justice Award
Eric Carlson, Directing Attorney, National Senior Citizens Law Center

Elma Holder Founder's Award
Kathy Greenlee, Administrator, Administration for Community Living (ACL), Assistant Secretary, Administration on Aging (AoA)

Janet Wells Public Policy Leadership Award
Cathy Hurwit, Chief of Staff, Representative Jan Schakowsky (D-IL)

Congratulations to all of the winners!  We're looking forward to seeing you at our Annual Conference.

We are extremely grateful for the members of our Governing Board and Leadership Council that volunteered to serve on the Leadership Award Selection Committee to review the numerous qualified nominees and select the award recipients.  We extend our thanks to Yvette Green, Brian Capshaw, Brian Lee, Deanna Okrent, Heather Porreca, Jennifer Golle, and Patricia Warnick.

Stay tuned for next week's Gazette to learn more about award recipients!

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12 Reasons to Attend the 38th Annual Consumer Voice Conference

This is the latest entry in our 12 week series.

#12: Celebrate the 2014 Consumer Voice Leadership Award Winners

The Consumer Voice will be presenting several awards during the annual conference.  Award winners have demonstrated an exceptional commitment to improving the lives of long-term care consumers. Congratulate and learn from fellow advocates who are working to ensure quality long-term care for all consumers.  View award recipients here.

Click here for more reasons to attend the Consumer Voice Conference. Register now!

Thank you to the individuals and organizations who have become conference sponsors and provided scholarships!  View a list of 2014 Conference Sponsors on our website.  There is still time to contribute! Find out more about conference sponsorship here and make a contribution here.

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Resident Dick Weinman Writes for AARP Oregon

Assisted Living resident Richard "Dick" Weinman, PhD is a featured writer for AARP Oregon.  In his column "The Thin Edge of Dignity," he writes about his experience living at a long-term care facility.  Dick led an active lifestyle until a 2005 severe auto accident left him disabled and in a wheelchair. Before the accident, Dick was a broadcaster, writer and emeritus professor of communications at Oregon State University.  He has been writing for AARP Oregon's blog for over a year.  Learn more about Dick and read his blog here.

You can meet Dick Weinman and hear him speak during the Consumer Voice Annual Conference in November. Watch his documentary video "The Thin Edge of Dignity" then join him for a discussion.  For more information about the conference, click here.

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Checklist to Help Aging Parents

A study by MetLife found that there are nearly 10 million adults over age 50 caring for their aging parents. The study estimates the potential costs for caregivers (in terms of lost wages, pension and Social Security benefits) to be an average of $300,000 per caregiver.  This cost may put a significant dent in the caregiver's own retirement plans if they have not planned on helping a parent. The conversation may be difficult, but it is important for children to speak with their parents about financing care later in life and to clarify their parent's wishes. This simple checklist provides a good place to get started when speaking to your parents about finances, insurance, legal documents, living arrangements and health.  Have the conversation now; it is easier to discuss these issues earlier when parents are still active and healthy.

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Accuracy of Nursing Home Reported Data to Be Assessed in Expanded CMS Review

CMS will expand the Minimum Data Set Focused Survey in 2015 to be conducted nationwide.  The scope of some or all of the focused surveys will also be expanded to include an assessment of the staffing levels of nursing facilities.  This assessment will aim to verify the data self-reported by the nursing home, and identify changes in staffing levels throughout the year.  For more information, read the October 31 memorandum.

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Minnesota Elder Justice Center Seeks Information about Supervised Visitation Programs

The Minnesota Elder Justice Center is seeking information about Supervised Visitation programs for elders and vulnerable adults to permit safe contact with family members or other trusted persons who have victimized them.  The Center seeks examples of state laws, policies, program initiatives, and evaluations that illustrate contemporary approaches to this practice.  Send information to Iris Freeman at iris.freeman@wmitchell.edu.

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In this Issue

CMS Reports Reduced Antipsychotic Use in Nursing Homes - Is It Time to Celebrate?

Thank You for a Successful 2014 Residents' Rights Month!

Pressure Ulcer Prevention Day is November 20th

Congratulations 2014 Consumer Voice Leadership Award Winners

12 Reasons to Attend the 38th Annual Consumer Voice Conference

Resident Dick Weinman Writes for AARP Oregon

Checklist to Help Aging Parents

Accuracy of Nursing Home Reported Data to Be Assessed in Expanded Survey

Minnesota Elder Justice Center Seeks Information about Supervised Visitation Programs

4.1 It CAN Be Done!

As part of our nursing home staffing campaign, Better Staffing: The Key to Better Care, Consumer Voice is advocating for a minimum of 4.1 hours of nursing care per resident per day.  To show your support of this campaign, individuals can send us a photo with the slogan "4.1 - It CAN Be Done" by tweeting us pictures @ConsumerVoices, posting on our Facebook or emailing your photos to info@theconsumervoice.org.  Get the word out and encourage consumers to participate by sending in their photos too! 

You can join the Better Staffing: The Key to Better Care campaign, learn more about the campaign's goals, access the campaign advocacy toolkit, and take action at: www.theconsumervoice.org/betterstaffing

Calendar of Events

Friday, November 7: Facebook First Friday, Topic: Consumer Involvement

November 15-18, 2014: Consumer Voice Annual Conference at the Hilton Crystal City in Arlington, VA Register now.

Thursday, November 20: World Wide Pressure Ulcer Awarenss Day

Thursday, December 11: Substance Abuse, 3:00pm EST, Webinar from The National Nursing Home Social Work Network

Your Consumer Voice Membership Shows Your Support for Quality Long-Term Care

The Consumer Voice envisions a world in which all consumers of long-term care, services and supports are treated with respect and dignity.  As we work to achieve this goal, we need friends and advocates like you to join us in our fight to achieve quality services for all long-term care consumers.  There is strength in numbers, and when there are many of us and our voice is strong, only then do we achieve our mission of empowering consumers and bringing about quality of life and quality care for all people receiving long-term care, services and supports.  That is why we need your help - become a member of the Consumer Voice!

Join now and receive a SPECIAL OFFER - your membership will not expire until December 2015 - That's 3 months FREE!

Go to www.theconsumervoice.org/join to become a member.
Questions about membership? Contact info@theconsumervoice.org

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Thank you for considering making a payroll contribution in support of our efforts of achieving quality long-term care.  If you have any questions or suggestions, contact us at info@theconsumervoice.org or by phone at 202-332-2275.

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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 below. Your contributions and comments are welcome and should be sent to info@theconsumervoice.org. Copyright © 2014.

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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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