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|A newsletter of FCA's National Center on Caregiving
August 11, 2010
Volume X, Number 14
FCA has a new address effective August 16, 2010
Family Caregiver Alliance
180 Montgomery Street,
San Francisco, CA 94104
| IN THIS ISSUE|
State Legislation, Policy & Reports
Federal Legislation, Policy & Reports
- House Votes to Provide States with Medicaid Funding More...
- Senate Appropriations Committee Approves Bill with Strong Support for Caregivers More...
- Direct Care Workforce Empowerment Act introduced in House and Senate More...
- Grants from U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Benefit Caregivers More...
Research Reports & Journal Articles
- Study Examines Informal and Formal Caregivers in the European Union More...
- World Elderly Population Increases, Putting Pressure on Long Term Care Systems More...
- Globalization Changes how Children in India Care for Parents More...
Conferences & Trainings
- New Report Explains How Women Will Benefit from New Health Care Law More...
- Four Caregiver Focus
Groups Discuss Unique Challenges More...
- Study Examines
Impact of Caregiving and Employment on Caregiver Well-Being More...
- Scientists Use
Electrodes in Alzheimer's Patients' Brains in Attempt to Restore Memory More...
Funding, Media & Miscellaneous
- Webinar: Building and Sustaining Partnerships for Lifespan Respite Aug. 12 More...
- Webinar for Caregivers on Understanding and Embracing Limits Aug. 25 More...
- 2010 National Lifespan Respite Conference Oct. 24-27 More...
- Gerontological Society of America Annual Conference Nov. 19-23 More...
- Deadline for Innovations in Alzheimer's Disease Caregiving Legacy Awards Extended More...
- New Approaches to Alzheimer's Research More...
- Companies Offer Programs to Assist Employees with Caregiving and End-of-Life Issues More...
- National Council on Aging Publishes "Straight Talk for
Seniors" Fact Sheets More...
House Votes to Provide States with Medicaid Funding|
The U.S. House of Representatives passed a $26 billion spending bill this week which will provide states with $16 billion in funding for their Medicaid programs. States received increased funding for their Medicaid programs under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, however, this funding was set to expire in December 2010. With the passage of the bill this week, an additional $16 billion will help states pay for their Medicaid programs through the first six months of 2011. For more information, visit:
Wall Street Journal
Senate Appropriations Committee Approves Bill with Strong Support for Caregivers |
The Senate Appropriates Committee approved its spending bill for the departments of Labor, Health, and Human Services on July 29th with a number of provisions which will benefit family caregivers. The bill includes an additional $104.5 million in funding for the Caregiver Initiative, which is projected to provide 1 million more hours of adult day care and 1.3 million more hours of personal care assistance. Also, $50 million is allocated for the National Family Caregiver Support Program to serve an additional 200,000 caregivers with information about services, caregiver counseling and training, and 3 million more hours of respite care. The Department of Labor also would receive funding to provide grants to states to implement paid leave programs which could help employees who are caregivers. The House subcommittee also passed its version of the bill, however, it's expected that neither the House nor the Senate will vote on these bills until after November elections. Mathematica Policy Research recently released a policy brief in which 85% of Title III participants reported that participating in these programs (home-delivered and congregate meals, case management, transportation, and homemaker and caregiver support) helped them to remain in their homes. A more detailed summary of the Senate bill will appear on FCA's website next week. For more information, visit:
United States Senate Committee on Appropriations
Mathematica Policy Research
Direct Care Workforce Empowerment Act introduced in House and Senate
Congresswoman Linda T. Sanchez (D-CA) and Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) recently introduced the Direct Care Workforce Empowerment Act (H.R. 5902/ S. 3696) to better protect home health care workers by extending wage and overtime protections through the Fair Labor Standards Act. Direct care workers can provide caregivers with much-needed breaks; however, low pay and turnover rates of 70% or higher may compromise the quality of care. The New York Times recently reported that the Labor Department is investigating a number of hospitals and nursing homes for alleged overtime violations for nurses and other employees. For more information, visit:
Rep. Sanchez Press Release
New York Times
Grants from U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Benefit Caregivers
The Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services is making $2.25 billion in grants available to states to support community-based alternatives to institutional long term care. States are encouraged to use the Money Follows the Person Rebalancing Demonstration to transition individuals from institutions to qualified home and community-based programs. HHS also awarded $4.9 million in grants to states to support Family-to-Family Health Information Centers which help connect families of children and youth with special health care needs to information, education, training, and professional services. For more information visit:
Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services
HHS Health Resources and Services Administration
Study Examines Informal and Formal Caregivers in the European Union|
A recent paper examines the blurring line between informal and formal caregivers in the European Union (EU). The authors report that informal caregivers provide most of the caregiving to older people in the EU and that this financial contribution is estimated to cover 50 to 90 percent of the overall costs of long term care. The authors provide a detailed comparison of how countries provide long term care throughout the EU and conclude that policymakers must recognize and support both formal and informal caregivers as they implement comprehensive solutions for long term care. To read "Informal Care in the Long-Term Care System" by Dr. Judy Triantaffillou and colleagues, visit
European Commission under the Seventh Framework Programme
World Elderly Population Increases, Putting Pressure on Long Term Care Systems
The Population Reference Bureau's recent report "World Population Highlights: Key Findings from PRB's 2010 World Population Data Sheet" explains that people aged 80 and older are the most rapidly growing age group in the world. Policymakers are struggling with how to address the needs of this population; a recent Washington Post article examined various policy proposals, including telemedicine, direct care companies owned by direct care workers (leading to lower turnover), senior campuses, and doctor house call pilot programs. For more
Population Reference Bureau
Globalization Changes how Children in India Care for Parents
A recent National Public Radio story examined how immigration and globalization are changing India's tradition of aged parents living with their grown children. India's current elder population (aged 60 or older) is 81 million and is expected to grow to a quarter of India's total population by 2050. At the same time, many Indians have moved abroad, seeking better economic opportunities which may mean less support for aged parents. The government recently passed a law requiring children to care for their parents, and additional infrastructure to support this population is needed. To read or listen to "India: No Country for Old People?" by Sandip Roy, visit:
National Public Radio
New Publication Explains How Women Will Benefit from New Health Care Law|
A new publication from the Commonwealth Fund, "Realizing Health Reform's Potential: Women and the Affordable Care Act of 2010" explains how provisions in the new health care law will benefit women. Women are more likely to be caregivers and may have to decide between caring for a loved one or keeping a job which includes health care coverage. The authors suggest that the expansion of Medicaid in 2014 (to include legal residents making up to 133 percent of the federal poverty level) will likely have the greatest effect on increasing health care coverage for women. A recent report by the Urban Institute examined Social Security benefits and found that 26.1% of women in 2003 received poverty-level Social Security benefits as compared to 15.8% of men. For more information, visit:
The Commonwealth Fund
The Urban Institute
Four Caregiver Focus Groups Discuss Unique Challenges
Four groups of caregivers participated in listening sessions this spring to discuss their unique challenges in accessing mainstream caregiver services. Challenges included lack of access to internet and phone, cultural traditions which prevent self-identification as caregivers and unexpected caregiving responsibilities for wounded veterans. Proposed solutions included one-on-one assistance in navigating government programs, connecting new caregivers to peer mentors and caregiver networks and an increased focus on assisting the care recipient and the caregiver. To read "The Overlooked Caregiver: A Series of Listening Sessions," please visit:
The HSC Foundation
Study Examines Impact of Caregiving and Employment on the Caregiver's Well-Being
A recent study in Health Management (Vol. 2, Issue 1) used data from a survey of over 240,000 Americans and found that respondents who were caregivers and who were employed reported higher levels of well-being than respondents who were caregivers but who were not employed. In addition, employees who were not caregivers reported higher levels of well-being than employees who were caregivers. To read "Estimating the Impact of Caregiving and Employment on Well-Being" by Dr. Joseph Coughlin, please visit:
Scientists Use Electrodes in Alzheimer's Patients' Brains in Attempt to Restore Memory
The most recent edition of the Annals of Neurology (Vol. 68, Issue 1) features an article discussing the first phase of a study using electrodes implanted in a patient's brain (known as deep brain simulation) to improve memory for patients in the early stages of Alzheimer's. The 12 month study had six participants; two patients deteriorated, two improved, and two showed no improvement. The neuroscientist who led the study is hopeful that the Phase 1 results will allow for a Phase 2 study. An article in the Globe and Mail from August 4th explains the significance of the study as researchers try to find a cure for Alzheimer's. To read "A phase I trial of deep brain stimulation of memory circuits in Alzheimer's disease" by Dr. Adrian W. Laxton and colleagues, please visit:
Annals of Neurology
Globe and Mail
Webinar: Building and Sustaining Partnerships for Lifespan Respite Aug. 12|
ARCH National Respite Network and Resource Center is sponsoring a free webinar on respite care collaboration from 3:00 to 4:15 p.m. EDT on Thursday, August 12, 2010. Speakers include Barbara Snyder, from Easter Seals Delaware & Maryland's Easter Shore; Barbara Schwartz with the Illinois Department on Aging; and Joseph Lugo, from the Aging and Disability Resource Center Program at the Administration on Aging. For more information or to register for the webinar, visit:
Arch National Respite Network and Resource Center
Webinar for Caregivers on Understanding and Embracing Limits Aug. 25
Caregiving.com will feature a webinar for family caregivers on August 25th about the difficulty in trying to operate as a "lone caregiving wolf." The webinar will provide advice on understanding and embracing your limits. To register for this webinar on Aug 25 at 11:00am to 12:00pm (CDT), please visit:
2010 National Lifespan Respite Conference Oct. 24-27
The conference is hosted this year by the Maryland Respite Care Coalition and will be held October 24-27 in Baltimore, Maryland. The theme, RESPITE: Create It!, will showcase the creative ways in which respite care is delivered throughout the nation. The Maryland Respite Care Coalition, Inc. (MRCC) will be sponsoring the event in partnership with the ARCH National Respite Network and the National Respite Coalition. For more information and to
2010 National Lifespan Respite Conference
Gerontological Society of America Annual Conference Nov. 19-23
GSA's Annual Scientific Meeting will be held November 19-23 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The theme this year is "Transitions of Care Across the Aging Continuum." Early bird discount ends September 1st. For more information and to register, visit:
Gerontological Society of America Annual Conference
Deadline for Innovations in Alzheimer's Disease Caregiving Legacy Awards Extended|
The National Center on Caregiving (NCC) at Family Caregiver Alliance (FCA) has extended the deadline for applications for the Rosalinde Gilbert Innovations in Alzheimer's Disease Caregiving Legacy Awards to Tuesday, August 24th at 5pm (PDT). Three awards of $20,000 each will be made to organizations whose unique programs address the needs of Alzheimer's caregivers in three categories. One award will be granted in Creative Expression, one in Diverse/Multicultural Communities and one in Policy and Advocacy. The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation provides support for this awards program, now in its third year. For more information, visit:
Family Caregiver Alliance
New Approaches to Alzheimer's Research
The July 24th edition of NewScientist (Issue 2770) features an article about the evolution of Alzheimer's research. With medical advances, plaque on the brain (long associated with Alzheimer's) can now be viewed on living patients, which the author explains could lead to earlier diagnoses and new ways of thinking about effective treatments. While past drug trials targeted blocking or breaking up plaque on the brain, new research is aimed at other possible culprits, including tangles which form inside the neuron and can build up until the neuron dies. The author, Shaoni Bhattacharya, provides an excellent, readable overview of new approaches to Alzheimer's research. For more information, visit:
Companies Offer Programs to Assist Employees with Caregiving and End-of-Life Issues
An August 10th story on National Public Radio focused on a program at Pitney Bowes which assists employees who are caregivers and who are also grappling with end-of-life issues for their loved ones. An employee featured in the story is able to be a caregiver for her mother while also using flexible scheduling to work from home. To listen or read "Firms Help Workers Provide End-Of-Life Care" visit:
National Public Radio
National Council on Aging Publishes "Straight Talk for Seniors" Fact Sheets
The National Council on Aging began a national educational campaign in July to help seniors understand how the new health care law will affect their health care. The campaign includes five downloadable fact sheets and a presentation which cover various topics, including Frequently Asked Questions about Health Reform and Seniors, Medicare Advantage Plans, Long-Term Care, Financing Medicare, and 5 Key Facts About the Affordable Care Act. For more information, visit:
National Council on Aging
|To find caregiver support services in your state, visit FCA's Family Care Navigator http://caregiver.org/caregiver/jsp/fcn_content_node.jsp?nodeid=2083|
?2010 Family Caregiver Alliance. All rights reserved.
The National Center on Caregiving at Family Caregiver Alliance works to advance the development of high-quality and cost-effective policies and programs for caregivers in every state in the country. The National Center is a central source of information and technical assistance on family caregiving for policymakers, health and service providers, program developers, funders, media and families. For questions or further information about the National Center on Caregiving, contact Policy_Digest@caregiver.org or visit the Family Caregiver Alliance website at www.caregiver.org.
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