It’s a fair question. NADSA members are asked to spend resources to travel to Washington, DC and to stay overnight in one of America’s most expensive cities in order to visit briefly with Members of Congress and the Senate. Often they meet with staff rather than directly with the Legislator. Does this effort, they ask, produce any positive results. This year’s visits indicate the answer is yes!
On May 16th & 17th, 42 NADSA representatives gathered in Washington, DC to advocate on behalf of Adult Day Services to 41 Members of Congress and 37 United States Senators.
NADSA advocated, among other issues, for three bills specific to veterans: S.739 or H.R.1369 (bi-partisan companion bills) to modernize how the VA may issue provider agreements for adult day services and other long-term extend care to veterans and H.R.2460 to provide funds to State Veteran Homes specifically to provide adult day health care in lieu of State Veteran home admission. One week later, on May 23rd, the House called to a vote H.R. 2460 as a special order of business and passed it!
H.R. 2460 is now in the Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs awaiting consideration by that body. Now is the time to contact your United States Senators to urge passage of H.R. 2460 before the current session expires at the end of this year. Complete information about H.R. 2460 is available thru this link.
NADSA delegates also carried to the Congress and Senate a request to contact the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) expressing serious concern with CMS implementation of the Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Rule of 2014. Delegates reported that several legislative offices expressed interest in doing so either individually or collectively and asked for a template letter from NADSA. AS NADSA’s public policy advisor and advocate, The Afflerbach Group (TAG) drafted a template letter and has been visiting the offices that expressed an interest in signing such a letter. Members of NADSA’s Public Policy Committee have bolstered this initiative with emails to the legislators. TAG will have an update for this initiative on September 23rd at the Annual Conference in Indianapolis, IN.
In short, less than 1% of Adult Day Service center providers in the nation carried NADSA’s legislative and regulatory message to 10% of the Congress and 37% of the Senate and achieved positive results! Imagine what could happen if more NADSA delegates participated!!
On another matter, as elections draw near for local, state and federal offices, non-profit organizations frequently are concerned about what participation in the electoral process they may have without endangering their non-profit tax status. Through our friends in the Leadership Council of Aging Organizations (LCAO), of which NADSA is a member, we have obtained an Election Checklist for 501(c)(3) Public Charities compiled by attorneys to assist non-profits. NADSA members can obtain a copy of this checklist and contact information for the organization that compile it by sending a request to firstname.lastname@example.org with 501(c)(3) Checklist in the subject line.
As NADSA continues to move forward on legislative and regulatory issues such as the Medicare Option, the CMS Medicaid HCBS rule and the MLTSS rule, there is no better advocate than you for adult day services and the consumers you serve. We hope to see you in September at the Annual Conference in Indianapolis!
By: Sen. Roy C. Afflerbach, Ret. – NADSA Public Policy Advisor & Advocate