The Buzz

News on transforming care for older adults


    January26 th

    Governor Newsom’s 2023-24 proposed budget focuses on housing, workforce issues, economic security, and other initiatives that impact older adults and people with disabilities. Learn how the proposed budget maintains key investments in the state’s Master Plan for Aging (MPA).Graphic reflecting the resources and expenditures of the 2023-24 CA proposed budget

    The California Master Plan for Aging (MPA) released its Second Annual Report, highlighting 2022 accomplishments toward building a CA for ALL Ages & Abilities. Its new Implementation Tracker makes it easy to get updates on each MPA initiative. Also, check out our efforts to support California’s MPA and support the scaling of Multisector Plans for Aging across the country.
    Image of Year 2 Annual Report for the California Master Plan for Aging

    Medicare beneficiaries with chronic conditions and daily living challenges struggle to navigate a complex care system. Our page on Innovating for Medicare Beneficiaries outlines how states can improve equitable access to high-quality care and services for their Medicare populations. In California, learn how one woman supports the Medicare-eligible.

    January19 th

    By the end of the decade, all baby boomers will be age 65 and older. Recognizing this shift and the variety of factors that affect the aging experience, state policymakers have engaged numerous programs to help older adults thrive.

    The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) highlights progress across the country, including those states already implementing Multisector Plans for Aging (MPAs) or participating in the Multisector Plan for Aging Learning Collaborative.

    Logo of the National Conference of State Legislatures

    The American Society on Aging (ASA) is partnering with The John A. Hartford Foundation, West Health, and TSF on a blog series and programming to foster Multisector Plans for Aging (MPAs) across the country. The first post unpacks MPA components and how to get involved.

    Also, join the January 25 Future Proof Live webinar on MPAs, and how states can coordinate infrastructure and services through these statewide comprehensive plans to go beyond traditional health and community services.
    Map of Multisector Plan for Aging Activity Across States

    Watch a recent California Collaborative for Long Term Services and Supports (CCLTSS) webinar, which shares how regional coalitions are elevating local Multisector Plans for Aging (MPAs) in rural areas. Another helpful CCLTSS recording dives into the benefits of assessing regional strengths.

    January11 th

    Supported by TSF, a group of expert stakeholders with diverse perspectives met over several months to assess COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE) flexibilities. Resources on the webpage PHE Flexibilities Roadmap for Policymakers provide concrete and consensus-driven recommendations to federal and state policymakers on which temporary Medicare and Medicaid flexibilities should be made permanent to increase access to equitable, person-centered care for older adults. View the Roadmap and media advisory.

    Among the flexibilities that experts found should be made permanent are those that:

    • Expand telehealth benefits to ensure equitable access to remote care;
    • Maximize clinician scope of practice to expand the workforce available to care for older adults; and
    • Ease Medicare and Medicaid program requirements to enable more individuals to qualify to get the care they need.

    Symbols of computer, clinicians, and clipboard.

    Join Alliance for Health Policy on Friday, March 3, at 9 am PT for a webinar: Moving Beyond COVID-19: Considerations for Using PHE Flexibilities to Improve Person-Centered Care. The event will feature TSF leadership and a diverse panel of experts to discuss considerations for using the PHE flexibilities to improve person-centered, equitable care for older adults.

    Nurse and older woman with walker walking together.

    Throughout the pandemic, research showed the potential for PHE flexibilities to minimize administrative, clinical, and financial barriers while significantly advancing person-centered, equitable care.

    The Roadmap was developed following formative efforts. This included a 2022 issue brief and policymaker playbook that examined the benefits and risks of PHE flexibilities, described a person-centered assessment framework, and offered recommendations for flexibilities that could be considered for permanence.

    January5 th

    Medicare beneficiaries with chronic conditions and daily living challenges struggle to navigate a complex system of care. Innovating for Medicare Beneficiaries outlines ways states can improve equitable access to high-quality care and services for this population. In California, a survey conducted by The National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago highlights the health care needs and experiences of adults age 55 and older. Also, view an ATI Advisory profile of California’s Medicare population.

    A recent study in the Better Care Playbook found that Medicare beneficiaries with complex needs who were enrolled in Medicare Advantage (MA) plans had lower rates of acute care utilization than those in traditional Medicare.

    December14 th

    In our latest Regional Coalition feature story, San Diego Senior Alliance (SDSA) recounts a year of hard work and progress. SDSA is part of the California Advocacy Network, a statewide movement involving nearly 1,000 organizations who serve more than 95 percent of California’s population. Explore the Regional Coalition profiles.

    An Investigative Reporting Program article, originally published in The Washington Post, highlights examples of a changing villages movement—one that is building upon diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) principles, and considering past and current barriers for people of color and diverse communities as it works to expand membership and help more people age in place.

    December7 th
    Commissioned by the Partnership to Align Social Care, Manatt Health has developed a playbook for state Medicaid agencies seeking to partner with Community Care Hubs (CCHs) in the design and implementation of social determinants of health (SDOH) initiatives. The playbook offers an introduction to the key functions of CCHs, and practical advice on how state Medicaid agencies can collaborate with them.
    A recent webinar shared key highlights from the playbook. Access the recording and materials.
    Image with title of report and pictures of report authors

    Join the California Collaborative for Long-Term Services and Supports on Tuesday, December 13, at 12 pm PT to learn about the steps Regional Coalitions are taking to develop local Master Plans for Aging (MPAs) in rural communities. The webinar will focus on how to form an advisory committee, build on existing data, gather community input, and plan for implementation and sustainability.

    November30 th

    A new brief from ATI Advisory offers data insights on 2023 Medicare Advantage (MA) plans offering the five expanded primarily health-related benefits (EPHRB). The brief includes information on where plans are offering EPHRB and an overview across both MA special needs plans (SNPs) and non-SNP MA organizations. This is part of ATI’s broader effort to track nonmedical supplemental benefits and builds on their recent chartbook.

    Earlier this month Grantmakers In Aging (GIA) welcomed six new members to its Board of Directors, including our Vice President of Programs, Equity, and Community Impact Rigo Saborio. Learn more.

     

    Bringing awareness to issues affecting the lives of community-dwelling older adults, our partnership with UC Berkeley’s Investigative Reporting Program inspires unique reporting opportunities. A recent article published by climate justice site Grist elevated an intergenerational housing story in France as an example of how to protect older adults during heat waves.

    November17 th

    Learn about the advocacy efforts at Marin County Aging Action Initiative (AAI) in our inaugural Regional Coalition feature story. AAI is part of the California Advocacy Network, a statewide movement involving nearly 1,000 organizations who serve more than 95 percent of California’s population. Explore the Regional Coalition profiles.

    A new brief from AARP Public Policy Institute presents the vision and framework for the 2023 Long-Term Services and Supports (LTSS) State Scorecard. The brief discusses AARP’s approach to the 2023 edition of the Scorecard, reflects on changes since the Scorecard was first published in 2011, and considers how future editions may best meet today’s needs.

    November10 th

    We are hitting the road. TSF will be in Las Vegas, Nevada, for HLTH 2022—health care’s leading innovation event. You are invited to hear about our future innovation and investments activities.

    Then it’s onto Charm City. Mission Investors Exchange National Conference (MIE) is the premier event for impact investors in philanthropy. Come discuss partnerships and investments, and hear from leading voices. Then join the TSF Innovation and Investments team for a dinner December 5, location TBD in Baltimore, Maryland. Contact Gina Alferez at to request an invitation.

    Older black man and black woman embracing each other. This National Family Caregivers Month, The SCAN Foundation salutes the tremendous contributions that family caregivers provide to older adults and people with disabilities.

    Nearly everyone will be a caregiver or need a caregiver in their lifetime. Currently, 53 million people in America are unpaid caregivers—providing physical, emotional, social, and financial support to family, friends, and neighbors. They are the “invisible backbone” of U.S. health care, spending roughly $7,000/year on out-of-pocket caregiving costs, such as household and medical expenses. An earlier report found that caregivers’ estimated 34 billion hours of unpaid care translated to an estimated economic value of $470 billion.

    California had 6.7 million adult caregivers in 2020, and 1 in 4 adults provided at least 20 hours/week of caregiving. Nearly 3 in 5 were women, 3 in 5 were 45 years of age or older, and 4 in 5 were white or Latino. Further, we see communities of color living in multigenerational settings (or households) more often than whites, which suggests that these families are more likely to provide unpaid caregiving across the generations.

    Family caregivers are the unsung heroes of health care and deserve more recognition than just 30 days in November. Their service reinforces our commitment to lift their voices—like Sandy, a woman caring for her proud veteran father, and ensuring he can age at home surrounded by his friends and community.

    Similarly, Grace cares for her parents. She adjusts as her parents’ needs change to ensure they can keep doing what they like to do. Simultaneously, she is thinking about how she can obtain support and maintain her own well-being.

    Though Angela moved into an assisted living facility to be supported with her daily living needs, her granddaughter Sarah continues to provide emotional and social support.

    We pledge to continue to advance efforts for every state to develop a Master Plan for Aging that includes the needs of family caregivers—like paid leave, multilingual training resources, virtual care options, and other supports. So what can you do today?

    • Start important conversations about aging well with older adults in your life. Then when caregiving needs exist, you’ll know what matters most to them.
    • Find your local AARP chapter to learn about family caregiver assistance and ongoing efforts to expand home- and community-based resources near you.

    Throughout National Family Caregivers Month and every day, we must continue to shine a light on family caregivers. They deserve our deep appreciation, and our responsiveness to their wants and needs.

    Older adults and family and friend caregivers are discussing what really matters. Our Aging Well with Community page shares how three older adults are navigating growing older with support from their family caregivers and communities. Related, check out our 10 Things series for millennial caregivers and families.

    Older woman and daughter in nursery.

    November2 nd

    Watch a recent Insure the Uninsured Project (ITUP) discussion on services and supports offered to California’s older adult population and dual eligible beneficiaries and how these services align with the Master Plan for Aging.

    A brief from the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) highlights current federal initiatives for integrating payment and delivery of services for dually eligible beneficiaries and opportunities for future integration efforts.

    The Better Care Playbook elevates promising approaches to improve care for adults with complex health and social needs. Help the Playbook grow and evolve by sharing your feedback by November 30.

    October26 th

    A new Insure the Uninsured Project (ITUP) resource shares facts about California’s older adult population and steps the state is taking to advance health and transform aging.

    Join the related ITUP webinar tomorrow, October 27, at 1 pm PT for a discussion on new services and supports offered to California’s older adult population and dual eligible beneficiaries, and how these services align with the Master Plan for Aging.

    CA for ALL Ages & Abilities Day of Action brought together nearly 900 participants (in-person and virtual) representing advocates, providers, policymakers, and more. This event – supported in partnership with Archstone Foundation, Gary and Mary West Foundation, May & Stanley Smith Charitable Trust, Metta Fund, San Diego Foundation, The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Foundation, and The SCAN Foundation – provided opportunities for stakeholders to hear and recommend key priorities of focus for the next two years.

    The themes of equity and partnership were woven throughout the day and centered on continuing momentum for advancing the Master Plan for Aging(MPA). Access event recordings and materials and read Dr. Sarita Mohanty’s reflections on the day.

    A Master Plan for Aging (MPA) lays out a roadmap to help states transform the infrastructure and coordination of services for their aging populations and people with disabilities. The Center for Health Care Strategies outlines the principles essential to MPA development and shares examples of best practices. Learn about the unexpected benefits of an MPA and how to get started.