Category Archives: Public Policy

13 July 2015

VA Urges Congress to Act and Transfer Funds for Veterans Care

Posted July 13, 2015 in Public Policy

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) today urged Congress to act expeditiously and approve its pending request for fiscal year 2015 budget flexibility. The request, formally transmitted on June 23, seeks the transfer of funds from the Choice Program to continue VA’s efforts to increase Veterans’ access to care and life-saving pharmaceuticals.

“It is essential that Congress pass legislation to provide the requested budget flexibility by the end of July 2015,” Deputy Secretary Sloan Gibson wrote. “This is necessary to replenish critical operations funding that VA had to reallocate from other medical services programs to sustain Care in the Community, after those funds were depleted. If these program funds are not restored, VA will face shutting down hospital operations during August 2015.

The letter and full text of the documents submitted to Congress today are available for download here:

Nationally, VA completed more than 56.2 million appointments between June 1, 2014, and May 31, 2015 – 2.6 million more appointments than were completed during the same time period in 2013-2014. VA also made more than three million authorizations for outside care.

25 June 2015

Insurance Industry Recognizes NADSA Comments to White House Conference on Aging

Posted June 25, 2015 in Public Policy

Posting comments to the Long-Term Supports and Services (LTSS) policy paper on the White House Conference on Aging (WHCoA) has earned ADS the respect of the health insurance industry. LifeHealthPro.com, self-described as “the only complete online destination for life & health insurance advisors,” has commended ADS providers as “The players who may be talking most about a concrete way to save money.”

On June 24th LifeHealthPro.com published an article online entitled “5 jolts from the White House conference prelims.” The fifth “jolt” commends ADS and is entitled: “Many people participating in the preliminary conversations seem to have trouble understanding the concept of limits on resources.” Click here to access the full article and to read the complete comments regarding ADS.

5 June 2015

Increase Visibility of Adult Day Services at WHCoA by Commenting on LTSS Brief

Posted June 5, 2015 in Public Policy

Long Term Services and Supports are a common theme and priority among the issues raised to date by stakeholders and aging leaders in preparation for the 2015 White House Conference on Aging.  By providing input, you are participating in the 2015 Conference in a meaningful and concrete way. The Conference is intended as a national conversation, and we need your voice as part of the discussion.

Submit comments about the value, demand and impact of adult day services as issues are prepared for the upcoming White House Conference on Aging.  The conference staff is beginning to write the final report to be presented in July. Go online now through this link http://www.whitehouseconferenceonaging.gov/blog/policy/post/long-term-services-and-supports to add your comments in support of Adult Day Services. They do not need to be lengthy to be powerful. One paragraph will be sufficient.

6 May 2015

NASUAD Releases Survey Results on Adult Day Services

Posted May 6, 2015 in Public Policy in Research

National Association of States United for Aging and Disabilities (NASUAD) released the results of a survey administered to Adult Service providers. NASUAD conducted this survey to learn more about the locations, funding sources, and supports that these programs provide to seniors and people with disabilities. The report demonstrates how Adult Services include a wide array of services, including a combination of social and medical supports. The comprehensive nature of Adult Services allows individuals to remain in their communities by ensuring that all of their needs are met in a single location. Consequently, older adults and people with disabilities are able to live in their own homes or the homes of their families without concerns about whether they are receiving adequate nutrition, health care, and socialization supports. Due to some of the locations of Adult Service providers, NASUAD is concerned that new CMS regulations may reduce the number of available providers in the Medicaid program. This would have the unintended consequence of limiting the availability of important health and social services, and would likely result in individuals entering institutional settings.

Read the report here

NADSA’s feedback on the survey tool and assistance with dissemination were instrumental in collecting the information used to generate this report. 

Background:  NADSA notified its members of the CMS definition released in January 2014 that could jeopardize the future of adult day centers funded by Medicaid.  Of greatest concern is the statement “The setting is integrated in, and facilitates the individual’s full access to the greater community, including services in the community, like individuals without disabilities.” Other sections of the Rule state that any setting that resembles an institutional setting by grouping individuals with like conditions, or by being attached or adjacent to an institution, will be presumed to be institutional in nature and will not qualify for Medicaid Waiver funding. 

15 April 2015

“Doc Fix” Bodes Well for ADS

Posted April 15, 2015 in blog in News in Public Policy

On Tuesday night, April 14th, the United States Senate agreed 92-8 with a previously House passed bill to replace the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) method of Medicare reimbursement with a new system focused upon “quality, value, and accountability”. Commonly referenced as the “Doc Fix”, the legislation applies primarily to physician reimbursement but includes unrelated items and several nuances that bode well for ADS .

Immediately, the bill does not affect adult day services because they are not direct recipients of Medicare reimbursements. However, additional important goals of the legislation are to link Medicare reimbursements to quality metrics and to encourage better care coordination and chronic care management. These stated goals provide an opening to fortify adult day’s efforts for direct Medicare reimbursement.

Here is a link to the Kaiser Health News report and FAQs about the new legislation, which President Obama said he will sign describing it as “a milestone for physicians, and for the seniors and people with disabilities who rely on Medicare for their health care needs.” http://kaiserhealthnews.org/news/faq-could-congress-be-ready-to-fix-medicare-pay-for-doctors-2/

Roy Afflerbach
NADSA Public Policy Advisor

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