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April 21, 2015

Introducing The Voice

Introducing the new look for Consumer Voice’s weekly e-newsletter.  The Voice will provide the same great info as The Gazette – current long-term care news, policy updates, information on trainings and details on what’s going on at Consumer Voice.

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Register Now! Free Advocacy Skills Training Webinar Series

Webinar #2: Delivering Your Message in Person: The Nuts and Bolts of Meeting with a Key Decision Maker

April 29, 2015 2-3:30pm ET

As part of our Consumers for Quality Care, No Matter Where initiative, Consumer Voice will be conducting four FREE advocacy skills training webinars throughout the year. This will be our second advocacy skills training webinar. We welcome anyone and everyone to partcipate - long-term care consumers, family members, individual advocates, long-term care ombudsmen, members of consumer advocacy groups, family/caregiving groups, consumer alliances, and community and senior organizations.

The session will include:

  • Determining who to meet with
  • Assembling people to go with you
  • Preparing for the visit
  • How to conduct the meeting
  • Following up
Registration is first come, first served, so register now! To register, click here.

*While the webinars are free, your contribution of $10 or more - or your membership in Consumer Voice - will help support our Public Policy and Advocacy programs. You can join the Consumer Voice here  or make a contribution here.

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Join us for a webinar on Round-the-Clock Registered Nurse Coverage in Nursing Homes

May 12, 2015 2:00-3:00pm ET

Registered nurses (RNs) play a critical role in ensuring quality care for nursing home residents, yet current federal nursing home regulations only require a RN to be on duty 8 hours a day, 7 days a week. This webinar will discuss why having a registered nurse around the clock is so important and present information and data about current coverage in states and nationally, including findings from an award-winning investigative reporter. Participants will hear from U.S. Representative Jan Schakowsky's staff about a federal RN bill sponsored by the Congresswoman and learn how they can advocate for its passage.


  • Welcome & Introductions - Robyn Grant, Director of Public Policy and Advocacy, Consumer Voice
  • Overview of issue - Robyn Grant
  • Put a Registered Nurse in the Nursing Home Act - Representative from Office of Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky
  • Why RN coverage is so important - Sarah Greene Burger, RN, MPH, FAAN; Coordinator, Coalition of Geriatric Nursing Organizations
  • Information and data about 24-hour RN coverage in states and nationally - Diane Carter, Executive Director, American Association of Nurse Assessment Coordination; Jeff Kelly Lowenstein, Lecturer, Journalism Department at Columbia College, Chicago
  • Advocacy Opportunities - Robyn Grant
To register for this webinar, please click here.

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FEMA Mobile Application

FEMA launched a new feature to its free app that will enable users to receive weather alerts from the National Weather Service for up to five locations across the nation. This new feature allows users to receive alerts on severe weather happening anywhere they select in the country, making it easy to follow severe weather that may be threatening family and friends.

The latest version of the FEMA app is available for free in the App Store for Apple devices and Google Play for Android devices.

To learn more about the FEMA app, click here.

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Volunteer Resource Center Webinar Series on Volunteer Engagement

The Aging Network Volunteer Resource Center will be holding a series of webinars on volunteer engagement.  The series will include topics like volunteer recruitment, retention, on-boarding, roles and impact.  During the first webinar on April 29th at 2:00pm ET, attendees will be asked to provide input via polls and discussions to help target the topics to best meet their needs.  Register here.

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New Film Looks at Home Elder Care System

With 90% of Americans preferring to age at home, the importance of home will grow dramatically over the next few decades. A new film in production, CARE, looks at the cracks in America’s home elder care system by telling the intimate stories of three overworked and underpaid home caregivers, and their clients.  Viewers see the workers bathe, dress, and comfort their sick and elderly clients, chafing at the knowledge that what they do is not seen or compensated as “real work.”  The stability and safety these workers bring to  the lives of others is sharply contrasted with the workers’ own lives, which hang by a slender economic thread. At the same time, CARE also follows a wife and her husband brought to the brink of financial ruin as they struggle to find and pay for quality care.

Using a cinema verité approach, the film immerses the audience in the world of aging and care-giving. CARE sounds the alarm about an aging population, an undervalued work-force, and the care crisis that is affecting millions of people.
The goal of the filmmakers, Deirdre Fisher and Tony Heirza, is to have CARE move the issue of home care from private conversations into public discourse and onto the nationwide policy agenda. The film calls for change and seeks to motivate audiences to look for solutions that will provide both elders and their care workers with the security, dignity and respect they deserve.  The filmmakers have been in discussion with advocates for domestic workers’ rights and for changes in the elder/home health care system, including Consumer Voice, to find ways to use the completed film to organize their constituents and educate policymakers about the issue of underpaid, undertrained caregivers and its effect on family economics and quality of care.
CARE has major support from foundations, but the filmmakers need funds to finish the documentary in order to release it in the fall of 2015. They will be doing a kickstarter campaign both to raise these critical funds, and as importantly, to coalesce a community around the film in anticipation of a two year outreach and engagement plan. To learn more about the film or to give a donation no matter how small, go to: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/980008319/care.

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Nursing Home Resident Kathleen Mears Writes Blog for Long-Term Living Magazine

Kathleen Mears is a nursing home resident in Ohio who writes a blog for Long-Term Living Magazine.  She is an incomplete quadriplegic and uses a power wheelchair to get around.  Her blog shares her thoughts and view of life as a nursing home resident as well as ideas of how it might be improved in the future.  Read her blogs here.

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Justice in Aging Webinar on New CMS Person-Centered Care Planning Rules

Justice in Aging is holding a webinar entitled "How New CMS Person-Centered Care Planning Rules Apply to Medicaid Delivered LTSS" on Wednesday, April 29th at 2:00pm EST.  The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published new rules, effective March 2014, that provide the best legal framework to date on person-centered planning processes and written service plans.  This webinar will focus on the rules as they apply to long-term services and supports delivered through Medicaid home and community-based waivers.  Register here.

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Briefly Noted...

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Spotlight on Giving: Monthly Gifts

Consumer Voice’s ability to be an independent advocacy voice for long-term care consumers is made possible by the generous financial support of our donors. Monthly gifts are a great way to provide consistent support to Consumer Voice to help us sustain our work.  Your recurring gift will allow Consumer Voice to fight for the rights of long-term care consumers throughout the year. Such contributions can be set up as an automatic charge on a credit card.

Click here to set-up a monthly charge and click the amount you wish in the box titled "Become a monthly supporter with a gift of:". Thank you!

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Spotlight on Educational Resources

The Consumer Voice and the National Ombudsman Resource Center have a multitude of resources available online covering a wide range of long-term care topics.  Visit the Consumer Voice website and the NORC website to explore all the available resources.  Take a look at this week's highlighted resource:

Resident Council Center  - The Resident Council Center on the Consumer Voice website contains information on Consumer Voice Projects related to resident councils, resident council rights that are protected by federal law, regulations applying to long-term care facilities, effective council advocacy and tools for forming an effective council.

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In this Issue

Register Now! Free Advocacy Skills Training Webinar Series

Join us for a Webinar on Round-the-Clock Registered Nurse Coverage in Nursing Homes

FEMA Mobile Application

Volunteer Resource Center Webinar Series on Volunteer Engagement

New Film Looks at Home Elder Care System

Nursing Home Resident Kathleen Mears Writes Blog for Long-Term Living Magazine

Justice in Aging Webinar on New CMS Person-Centered Care Planning Rules

Briefly Noted...

Spotlight on Giving: Monthly Gifts

Spotlight on Educational Resources

There's Still Time to Participate!

*Thank you to those who have already submitted entries for the Resident's Voice! We have received wonderful submissions and are looking forward to many more!

In celebration of Residents' Rights Month 2015, residents are encouraged to participate in the Resident's Voice Challenge by submitting essays, poems, artwork, drawings, or videos related to the theme for Residents' Rights Month 2015 "CARE Matters".  Click here for Resident's Voice submission guidelines.

  • Residents and consumers are asked to submit 40 words of wisdom to coincide with the celebration of Consumer Voice’s 40th anniversary.  Some entries may appear in our “40 Words of Wisdom” book (on sale this summer). (Have more - or less - to say? No problem! We will accept submissions of any length.)

  • Possible types of entries include: essays; poems or songs; artwork, drawings or photos; word collage; or video/audio recordings. Need some inspiration? Click here for examples of past entries.
  • Submissions are due by May 15, 2015.
  • Use this flyer to spread the word!

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!

Calendar of Events

April 20-22: HealthCare Chaplaincy Network's Caring for the Human Spirit Conference, Orlando, FL

Wednesday, April 22: Supervising Social Work Field Students in Nursing Homes, 3:30pm ET, Nursing Home Social Work Webinar Series

Wednesday April 29: Delivering Your Message in Person: The Nuts and Bolts of Meeting with a Key Decision Maker, 2:00pm ET

Wednesday, April 29: Building Volunteer Engagement: Now and Into the Future, 2:00pm ET, Webinar from the Aging Network Volunteer Resource Center

Wednesday, April 29: How New CMS Person-Centered Care Planning Rules Apply to Medicaid Delivered LTSS, 2:00pm EST, Webinar from Justice in Aging

Thursday, April 30: Risk Management and the LTCOP, 3:00pm ET, Free webinar from NORC

Tuesday, May 5: Achieving Cultural Competence for the Younger Adult in the Long-Term Care Setting - Part One, 2:00pm ET, Nusing Home Social Work Webinar Series

Tuesday, May 12: Round-the-Clock Registered Nurse Coverage in Nursing Homes, 2:00pm ET, Free national webinar from Consumer Voice

Wednesday, June 10: Achieving Cultural Competence for the Younger Adult in the Long Term Care Setting - Part Two, 3:00pm ET, Nursing Home Social Work Webinar Series

Tuesday, June 30: Delivering Your Message: Utilizing Both Traditional Approaches and Social Media, Advocacy skills training webinar from the Consumer Voice

Thursday, August 27: How to Grow, Support, and Activate Your Network, Advocacy skills training webinar from the Consumer Voice

October: Residents' Rights Month, CARE Matters

November 4-7, 2015: Consumer Voice 39th Annual Conference, Crystal City, Virginia

Your Car Can Help Promote Quality Care

Do you, a loved one or friend have a car that you or they would like to dispose of?  Now, Consumer Voice can help – and your used car can help Consumer Voice!  By working with our car disposal agency, Vehicle Donation to Any Charity (V-DAC), the proceeds from the sale of your car become a contribution to Consumer Voice.  

Note: We are actually registered with the service as “NCCNHR” so when asked which charity you would like to benefit, just say or type in “NCCNHR.”

Here is a link to our page on the V-DAC site http://v-dac.com/org?id=52-1122531 and you can get started there – or just call 877-999-8322 toll free.   And to discuss your donation with Consumer Voice, just write to us at info@theconsumervoice.org or call (202) 332-2275 x209

Join the conversation and follow us on social media!

Last Week's Most Popular Post:

Friday, April 17:
Imagine a film that could tell the real story of long-term care from the perspectives of consumers, their caregivers and their family members.

Last Week's Most Popular Tweet:

Thursday, April 16
You can get an education about long-term care by following @ConsumerVoices and reading comments on Facebook

Long-Term Care Resources & News

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About The Voice

The Voice 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 © 2015.

If you did not receive The Voice through a subscription, but would like to join our mailing list to receive future issues, click here.

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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