Spread the word » Facebook Twitter

September 27, 2016

Senate Finance Committee Introduces Bill to Improve Medicare Coverage

On September 21, 2016, Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden, D-OR, introduced a bill that would improve Medicare coverage for seniors and individuals with disabilities. The “Medicare Affordability and Enrollment Act” would set a maximum out-of-pocket cap for medical services, reorganize the Medicare enrollment process by fixing the confusing and outdated process, and make the program more reasonable for lower-income seniors and individuals with disabilities.

Medicare has been helping millions of Americans since 1965 obtain health and financial security, but there are many challenges with Medicare benefits today that this bill would address. Low and middle income individuals face significant financial challenges when paying for health care. Individuals with disabilities have to wait a full two years after receiving Social Security Disability Insurance to enroll in Medicare. Senator Wyden is determined to change these key challenges to the Medicare process. As he stated in a press release:

“Today, the promise of Medicare falls short for too many who find their health costs becoming more and more unaffordable. Protecting and strengthening the Medicare guarantee is a vital task as the program prepares to enroll the next generation of older Americans, and these policies will put many seniors on a firm foundation for years to come.”

The National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care joined with many other organizations to endorse this bill. You can find the summary of the bill here.

Back to Top

Alzheimer's Disease International (ADI) Releases 2016 World Alzheimer Report

Alzheimer's Disease International (ADI) has released World Alzheimer Report 2016 - Improving healthcare for people living with dementia: Coverage, quality and costs now and in the future.  This report provides key findings and recommendations for ways to improve the coverage and quality of healthcare for people with dementia. As of today 47 million people live with dementia around the world. This number is projected to sky rocket to more than 131 million by 2050 as populations age. Not only is dementia affecting millions of people, it is also having a large economic impact.

The total estimated cost of dementia worldwide is $818 billion, and could potentially rise to the trillion dollar mark by 2018. The report states that current dementia healthcare services are over-specialized. It notes that both primary and community care need to play a prominent role, which would increase capacity, limit the increased costs of care, and improve the coordination and integration of care. According to the report, health care for people with dementia needs to be continuous, holistic, and integrated. Specialized dementia care units or mental health liaison services could be put in all hospitals in order to prevent unnecessary hospitalization of these patients. The report also discusses palliative care as a way to reduce the cost of anti-dementia drugs and improve access to care. To read the full report, click here.

Back to Top

Updated Consumer Voice Conference Agenda Available

A newly updated preliminary conference agenda is now available on our website.  The new agenda provides more detail on plenaries and sessions.  Agenda highlights include:

  • The Wave of the Future for the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program
  • Raise the Floor: Quality Nursing Home Care Depends on Quality Jobs
  • Welcome Home: Supporting LGBT Older Adults in Residential Communities
  • Fighting for Dignity: Prevention of Distressing and Harmful Resident-to-Resident Interactions in Long-Term Care Homes
  • ...and much much more!

Remember, regular registration ends October 1st - Register Now!

Already registered? We can't wait to see you there! Be sure you have reserved your hotel room by October 4th to take advantage of the Consumer Voice Conference rate.

Back to Top

Save the Date - Emergency Preparedness Requirements Call

Wednesday, October 5, 2016 - 1:30 PM - 3:00 PM Eastern Time 

The Emergency Preparedness Requirements final rule established national requirements for Medicare and Medicaid providers. During this call, CMS will discuss the new requirements and revisions in the final rule, as well as how to plan for both natural and man-made disasters, while coordinating with other emergency preparedness systems. A question and answer session follows the presentation.

Back to Top

Spotlight on Educational Resources

The Consumer Voice and the National Ombudsman Resource Center (NORC) 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:

Emergency Preparedness - This NORC Issue page provides resources, reports, ombudsman best practices and information to share with consumers on preparing for an emergency.

Back to Top

In this Issue

Senate Finance Committee Introduces Bill to Improve Medicare Coverage

Alzheimer's Disease International Releases 2016 World Alzheimer Report

Updated Consumer Voice Conference Agenda Available

Save the Date - Emergency Preparedness Requirements Call

Spotlight on Educational Resources

Combined Federal Campaign


Thank you for your support!

Prepare for Residents' Rights Month!

As we approach the presidential election in November, Americans are talking about the candidates and issues.  Are residents engaged? Use resources prepared by the Consumer Voice to make sure residents are involved and discussing the election process. Visit the voting issue page here


Policy Break 

The Consumer Voice's Policy Break updates you on the latest policy developments in long-term care. Click here to read recent policy break emails on a variety of issues. 

Calendar of Events

October: My Vote Matters, Residents' Rights Month 2016

Tuesday, October 11: Piecing Together Quality Long-Term Care, 2:00pm ET, Webinar from Consumer Voice

November 2-5, 2016: Consumer Voice 40th Annual Conference, Arlington, VA

Join the conversation and follow us on social media!

Last Week's Most Popular Post:

Friday, September 23:
The Senate Finance Committee Introduced a Bill that will improve Medicare coverage for seniors and individuals with disabilities.

Last Week's Most Popular Tweet:

Thursday, September 22
Read the Residents Voice Challenge Submissions

Long-Term Care Resources & News

Read past issues of The Voice here.

Support the Consumer Voice While You Shop Online

About The Voice

The Voice is a weekly e-newsletter, published by the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care. 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 © 2016.

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

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. Consumer Voice's mission is to represent consumers at the national level for quality long-term care, services and supports.

Click here to unsubscribe