The following are issues that AARP Kansas staff and volunteers will be advocating for during the 2021 legislative session which begins on Monday, January 11, 2021.
AARP Kansas is looking for virtual advocates to join our team to fight for the issues that residents 50-plus care about, including health care, affordable utilities and livable communities.
Kansas legislators are back in Topeka with lots of issues to tackle in 2020. AARP Kansas and our team of advocacy volunteers across the state are looking forward to working with legislators on important issues that will enhance the ability of Kansans who are 50 and older to live their best lives –and provide those same options to future generations. Our focus is on making local communities livable for all ages and helping Kansans remain in their homes and communities for as long as they desire.
With Governor Brownback’s veto of KanCare (the Kansas version of Medicaid) expansion, House Bill 2044, the Kansas House now has the opportunity to put hardworking Kansans first and overturn the governor’s veto. Maren Turner, director of AARP Kansas—with more than 320,000 members age 50 and older in the Sunflower State—issued the following statement, urging the House to take action now.
On February 23, the Kansas Senate voted 38-1 in favor of the Kansas Lay Caregivers Act (SB 68 as amended), otherwise known as the CARE Act. The CARE Act would require Kansas hospitals to give each patient the opportunity to designate a caregiver when they enter the hospital so the caregiver's name can be recorded, the caregiver is informed when the patient is transferred or about to be discharged, and the caregiver is given instruction on how to take care of the patient when he or she returns home. Some patients return home needing complex medical and nursing tasks as they recuperate. The CARE Act helps ensure that the caregiver knows what to do and how to do it giving the patient a better chance of getting well and not being readmitted to the hospital.
On February 1, 2017, the Senate Public Health and Welfare Committee, chaired by Senator Vicki Schmidt, heard testimony on Senate Bill 68, the CARE Act. This proposed legislation would support the 345,000 Kansas caregivers who are providing unpaid care to a family member or loved one. The CARE Act, (Caregiver, Advise, Record, Enable Act) is another tool to reduce unnecessary hospitalizations by ensuring that caregivers are acknowledged and instructed on how to care for their loved one when he/she returns home from the hospital. It is a NO COST, commonsense solution to help formalize important discharge practices.
Kansas lawmakers, many of them new to the Statehouse as a result of the 2016 elections, will began their work in Topeka this week. You can be sure that AARP Kansas volunteers and staff will also be at the State Capitol working hard to educate legislators, both new and returning, about issues that impact those who are 50 and older.
Charity cares for her grandmother, Joan, who suffered a severe stroke several years ago. Charity, along with other family members, helps take care of Joan so she can remain in her own home. While difficult at times, Charity wouldn’t have it any other way.
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