Aging News Alert

Alaska

 

Researchers Find Mortality Rates Rising; Reverses Trend

Deaths among white U.S. men and women aged 45-54 rose significantly between 1999 and 2013, according to a new analysis funded by the National Institute on Aging (NIA). This change reverses decades of progress in mortality and was unique to non-Hispanic whites in the United States.

read complete story

New Centers to Focus on Chronic Disease

Funds will establish specialized Transdisciplinary Collaborative Centers (TCCs) for health disparities research focused on chronic disease prevention. The emphasis will be on developing, implementing and disseminating community-based multilevel interventions.

read complete story

(ALASKA) Legislature Acts Fast to Extend Senior Benefits

The first bill of 2011 passed by the Alaska House of Representatives gives unanimous endorsement to an extension of the state's popular Senior Benefits Program for another four years.

read complete story

(ASSISTED LIVING) HHS' Civil Rights Office, Alaska Dept. of Health & Social Services Sign Settlement

A licensed assisted living facility for Alaska seniors has modified its transportation policies and practices to better accommodate qualified individuals with disabilities, say officials at the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) and the Alaska Department of Health & Social Services (DHSS). As a result of the settlement agreement entered today (April 24) among the HHS Office for Civil Rights, DHSS and the Anchorage Pioneer Home (APH), residents with disabilities will now have equal access to APH's transportation services.

read complete story

HHS Provides $121 Million In Energy Assistance

The Department of Health & Human services is releasing $121 million in energy assistance to help eligible low-income households meet home energy costs. The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) funds are expected to provide states with heating assistance for the winter months ahead.

read complete story

Research Shows Physical Therapy Effective As Arthroscopic Knee Surgery

A new study questioning the usefulness of arthroscopic surgery for osteoarthritis of the knee should encourage patients to consider physical therapy as an effective non-surgical option, according to the American Physical Therapy Association. The study was published in the Sept. 11 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

read complete story

CMS Funds State Efforts On Home-Based Alternatives To Institutional Care

Seven states will receive a share of more than $8 million in federal grants to increase awareness of home- and community-based long-term care options for people leaving hospitals who otherwise may enter a traditional nursing home, officials at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services say.

read complete story

A Message from the Publisher

Here's something special our readers should consider as we near the end of summer.

read complete story

Grant Awarded To Continue Work Of Advancing Excellence Campaign

The Steering Committee of the Advancing Excellence in Americaís Nursing Homes campaign it has received a grant of more than $474,000 from The Commonwealth Fund to build on the momentum the Campaign has achieved in its first two years of work. This grant was awarded to enhance the Campaign's capacity to lead quality improvement efforts, reach out to nursing homes that have not yet joined, and maintain progress toward meeting improvement targets.

read complete story

Cost Slowing For Hospital Patient Care, Government Data Shows

The cost of patient care in U.S. hospital rose just under 1% between 2005 and 2006, much slower than the average 5.3% per year between 1997 and 2005, according to the latest numbers from the Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality. However, over the nine-year period from 1997 to 2006, the overall cost for stays in the hospital nearly doubled from $177 billion to $329 billion.

read complete story

Grassley Wants CMS To Account For Inaccurate Estimates Of Improper Medicare Payements

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) wants the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to produce a full accounting of how the agency provided inaccurate estimates of improper and fraudulent Medicare payments. Grassley, ranking Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, says the findings of a new Inspector General (IG) report require the agency to be forthcoming about the policies and procedures that were used.

read complete story

Corporate America Faces a Brain Drain

As the more than 76 million baby boomers approach retirement, an imminent talent shortage is affecting the workforce and many U.S. companies will be challenged with a significant loss of experienced workers. This talent drain can be partially alleviated if companies entice older workers to remain in the workforce longer, say Joan Strewler-Carter and Stephen Carter, the husband/wife team that co-founded the Life Options Institute, an organization dedicated to helping people plan for life after age 50.

read complete story

IRS Revises Voluntary Correction Program for Retirement Plans

"Employers and plan administrators want to comply with the tax laws and regulations to protect plan participants," says Michael Julianelle, director of the IRSís Employee Plans division. "EPCRS helps employers and plan administrators take a proactive role in identifying and fixing mistakes. It also encourages implementation of practices and procedures that ensure retirement plans comply with laws and regulations."

read complete story

Legal Services Corp., LexisNexis To Provide Free Software To Needy Groups

Legal Services Corporation (LSC), a quasi-governmental nonprofit funded by Congress, and LexisNexis have launched the HotDocs Software Donation Program for legal aid programs that help the nation's poor. Under the program, LexisNexis, a private provider of business information solutions, will provide free HotDocs software to eligible organizations, including those serving the elderly.

read complete story

Falling House Prices Seen Leaving Millions Dependent On Social Security In Retirement

As presumptive presidential contenders Sens. John McCain (R-AZ) and Barrack Obama (D-IL) fine-tune their plans for Social Security in preparation for the 2008 election, a new report from the Center for Economic & Policy Research (CEPR) shows that, due to the collapse of the housing bubble, the vast majority of Americans have accumulated little or no wealth. This means that they will be almost completely reliant on Social Security and Medicare to support them in their retirement years.

read complete story

Rasmuson Foundation Expands Sabbatical Program

Alaska: This year executives from tribes and all nonprofit sectors will be eligible to apply for the 2009 Rasmuson Foundation Sabbatical Program that is designed to provide time away from the office for rest, personal renewal and professional growth. The postmark deadline for applications is Oct. 1.

read complete story

Funding Available For Roybal Centers for Translational Research On Aging

The National Institute on Aging is inviting applications using the NIH Research and Development Core Center Grant (P30) award mechanism to support Edward R. Roybal Centers for Translation Research in the Behavioral and Social Sciences of Aging. NIA expects to make 8-12 awards totaling $3.6 million total costs in the first year, and $18 million total costs over the 5-year project period. Deadline for applications is Oct. 31.

read complete story

Website Helps Seniors Who Haven't Filed For Stimulus Payments

In response to the recent IRS announcement that millions of older Americans had not yet filed for their economic stimulus payments, the National Council on Aging is urging seniors to use its Stimulus Payment Tool at www.BenefitsCheckUp.org.

read complete story

IRS Begins Summer Push To Reach Retirees, Disabled Veterans

The Internal Revenue Service has launched a new summer campaign to reach those retirees and disabled veterans who qualify for the economic stimulus payment but have not filed to claim it. Newly released statistics released indicate about 74% in this group are accounted for in the stimulus payments currently being sent, leaving about 5.2 million potential recipients remaining.

read complete story

CMS To Provide Additional Funding For Health Insurance Counseling Programs

CMS plans to distribute an additional $15 million to State Health Insurance Assistance Programs in an effort to help Medicare beneficiaries obtain more information about their healthcare choices.

read complete story

Active Social Life May Delay Memory Loss Among Elderly

One of the features of aging is memory loss, which can have devastating effects on the quality of life among older people. In a new study, Harvard School of Public Health researchers found evidence that elderly people in the United States who have an active social life may have a slower rate of memory decline.

read complete story

CMS Has $13 Million To Fund States' Long-Term Care Reform Efforts

CMS revealed that its Real Choice Systems Change grants program for FY 2008 has available approximately $8 million in funding to continue to support states' efforts to address complex issues in long-term care reform. In addition, CMS was also awarded $5 million for Aging & Disability Resource Center /Area Agencies on Aging grants.

read complete story

CMS to Host Second National Education Call May 27

CMS will host the second national education conference call to address the implementation of the new Medicare Durable Medical Equipment, Prosthetics, Orthotics, and Supplies Competitive Bidding program scheduled to begin on July 1.

read complete story

AARP Offers to Host Presidential Forums On Healthcare, Financial Security

AARP, the nation's largest advocacy organization representing people over 50, is offering to host a series of what it describes as "joint forums" for the presidential candidates. The purpose of the proposed forums, says AARP Executive VP Nancy LeaMond, is provide a venue in which the Democratic and Republican presidential nominees can discuss their respective positions on the issues of healthcare and financial security.

read complete story

Rx Drug Ads Need More Oversight, AMA Honcho Tells Congress

The president-elect of the American Medical Association on Thursday, (May 8) called for better government oversight of prescription drug advertisements directed at consumers to protect patients from misleading information.

read complete story

Rx Drug Ads Need More Oversight, AMA Honcho Tells Congress

The president-elect of the American Medical Association on Thursday, (May 8) called for better government oversight of prescription drug advertisements directed at consumers to protect patients from misleading information.

read complete story

Leavitt Urges Transparency On Medicare Quality, Costs

Health & Human Services Secretary Michael Leavitt tells a small business audience if he had the legal authority he would direct changes in the nation's health system that would produce greater transparency about cost and quality of services. The largest impact would be on Medicare recipients, he adds.

read complete story

Elder Care Initiative Long-Term Care Grant Program

The Indian Health Service makes available grants to support planning and implementation of sustainable long-term care services for American Indians and Alaska Native elders.

read complete story

Examining The Issue Of 'Socialized Medicine' In The U.S.

A newly-published analysis by the Urban Institute surveys significant new and existing health reform proposals -- including so-called "Medicare for all" -- to determine if any can fairly be dubbed socialized medicine.

read complete story

FDA Makes Recommendations On Devices That Treat Blocked Heart Arteries

The U.S. Food & Drug Administration has issued draft guidelines to aid the development, testing and manufacture of coronary drug-eluting stents, devices used to treat blocked heart arteries.

read complete story

Phishing Scams, Frivolous Arguments Top the 2008 'Dirty Dozen' Tax Scams

If you're offering income tax advice to seniors, you should be aware the Internal Revenue Service has just released its 2008 list of the 12 most egregious tax schemes and scams, highlighted by Internet phishing scams and several frivolous tax arguments.

read complete story

Groups Press CMS on Drug Coverage For Low-Income People

Nineteen groups that advocate on behalf of people with Medicare are telling the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services that the agency's approach to preventing certain Medicare beneficiaries from having to change their Medicare drug plans will not work.

read complete story

Loss of LIS Due to Beneficiary Not Responding to SSA

The Social Security Administration now is in the process of mailing "SSA Medicare Prescription Drug Assistance Notice of Termination" letters to some beneficiaries who are currently receiving the low-income subsidy.

read complete story

Special Economic Stimulus Letters Reach Mailboxes in March

More than 130 million American households will begin receiving Internal Revenue Service letters next week reminding them to file a 2007 tax return in order to receive a 2008 economic stimulus payment.

read complete story

CMS Proposes Two New Rules for Redesigning Medicaid

In line with President Bush's recently unveiled plan to sharply reduce federal spending on government-funded healthcare programs, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services propose two new rules that, if finalized, would do exactly that.

read complete story

NEW: Private Grants for Community Health Programs -- 1st Edition

Discover over 200 newly-researched private foundation grants for a wide range of community health programs with a brand-new online and print directory from the publishers of Aging News Alert.

read complete story

Nonprofit Consultant Discusses Ways To Prepare For Economic Downturn

Nonprofits, funders and donors facing a possible recession would do well to draw lessons from the challenging economic period that the sector went through in 2001, made worse by 9/11, says the head of a nationwide consultancy for nonprofit organizations.

read complete story

Developing the Framework for Healthy People 2020 Public Comment Meetings

HHS is convening five regional meetings to discuss development of the framework for Healthy People 2020, the national health goals for the next decade.

read complete story

CMS Proposes Coverage With Evidence Development for Artificial Heart Devices

CMS is proposing coverage with evidence development of artificial heart devices. The agency proposes to cover artificial heart devices in Medicare beneficiaries who are enrolled in Food & Drug Admin.-approved studies.

read complete story

IRS Warns of New E-Mail, Phone Scams

The Internal Revenue Service is warning taxpayers -- especially the elderly -- to beware of several current e-mail and telephone scams that use the IRS name as a lure.

read complete story

CMS Proposes Rate Year 2009 Payment, Policy Changes for LTC Hospitals

CMS proposes a payment rule designed to assure that long-term care hospitals continue to receive appropriate payment for services provided while giving them incentives to provide more efficient care to Medicare beneficiaries.

read complete story

Group Presses for Social Security as Tool for Economic Stimulus

The National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare wants Congress to use Social Security -- not income tax refunds -- as a tool for distributing economic relief to seniors, thus stimulating the national economy.

read complete story

Osteoporosis Education Tool Kit Available

The Alliance for Aging Research has developed a new resource to educate women about osteoporosis, also known as porous bone disease.

read complete story

Boomers Making the Most of 401(k) Plans

A study of 500 boomers with investment assets of $1 million or more finds 71% have participated in 401(k) plans during their careers, and about half of these individuals say their 401(k) assets represent more than half of their overall retirement savings.

read complete story

FDA Clears Rapid Test for Drug-Resistant Staph Infections

The U.S. Food & Drug Administration has cleared for marketing the BD GeneOhm StaphSR Assay, the first rapid blood test for the drug-resistant staph bacterium known as MRSA (methicillin-resistant "Staphylococcus aureus"), which can cause potentially deadly infections. Methicillin is an antibiotic...

read complete story

Directory of Grants for Social Services

Many of your peers already have ordered these valuable publications. Don't get left behind! Click here to order the Social Service Directory for only $85Click here to order the Children & Youth Directory for only $69These new directories detail hundreds of freshly-researched priva...

read complete story

AFAR Accepting Applications for Student Training Program

Students participate in an eight- to 12-week structured research, clinical, and didactic program in geriatrics appropriate to their level of training and interests.

read complete story

Targeting Caregivers: How to Help Them Help Their Loved One

An estimated 34 million Americans provide care for a family member or friend aged 50+, according to AARP. Many of these caregivers are themselves over 50. And their help is not just hands-on, but also from the wallet.

read complete story

Another Stopgap Spending Law Emerges

Unable to come to terms among themselves over an FY 2008 spending plan, lawmakers adopt a seven-day continuing resolution to keep the government operating through Dec. 21, the day Congress is set to adjourn for the year.

read complete story

Half of Older Adults Go Unscreened for Colon Cancer

Only half of all Americans age 50 and over have had a colonoscopy, one of several common screening tests for colon cancer, according to the latest news and numbers from the Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality.

read complete story