— RICHMOND – AARP Virginia State Director Jim Dau today lauded lawmakers for bipartisan efforts to increase access to health care for 400,000 Virginians, including 95,000 people over 50 who are not yet eligible for Medicare.   “On behalf of all Virginians age 50 and older, especially those 95,000 that will now have much-needed access to health coverage, we graciously thank those state senators who worked across the aisle to do the right thing and vote to expand Medicaid in Virginia. …

— Click here to read the letter to legislators LETTER TO LAWMAKERS EXPRESSES CONCERNS ABOUT WORK REQUIREMENT   RICHMOND_ On behalf of more than 1 million members in Virginia, AARP Virginia State Director Jim Dau urges the General Assembly to expand the state’s Medicaid program to provide coverage for more low-income workers, including 95,000 people between the ages of 50 and 64. “AARP Virginia applauds the bipartisan progress of Virginia’s legislators and leaders in their efforts to expand health care coverage …

— RICHMOND _   AARP volunteers head to the Virginia General Assembly on Wednesday to ask legislators to improve programs that help Virginians who need health care coverage and those in long-term care facilities, as well as to create a program to help workers save for retirement.   With more than 1.1 million members in Virginia, AARP is the largest organization working on behalf of people age 50+ in the Commonwealth.  In recent years, AARP Virginia has successfully fought for protections for …

caregiving

— Have you or someone you know had an experience with the Long-Term Care Ombudsman program?  We want to hear from you! Many long-term care recipients are medically or emotionally too frail to speak up for themselves.  AARP Virginia believes the state Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program, which acts as the voice for these individuals to resolve care problems, should be fully funded to meet the minimum staffing ratio.  The ratio is set by the General Assembly as expressed in the Code of Virginia  Section 51.5 – 135, …

— The state is facing budget cuts, and AARP is fighting to keep the burden from falling on Kentucky’s most vulnerable citizens. In September, Gov. Matt Blevin (R) asked most state agencies to cut their budgets by 17.4 percent to avert a $200 million shortfall. Although Medicaid payments would be exempt, most services administered by the Kentucky Department for Aging and Independent Living would not. Kentucky ranks 50th among the states in the percentage of Medicaid long-term care dollars allocated to …

— The Iowa General Assembly convenes Jan. 8, and AARP Iowa is continuing to press for legislation that can ease the transition from hospital to home for patients and family caregivers. An estimated 317,000 Iowans serve as unpaid family caregivers, helping their parents, spouses or other loved ones with daily tasks such as bathing, dressing, meals and transportation. They also help with medical tasks such as managing medications and dressing wounds. Even so, a 2015 survey found that 50 percent of …

— State legislators will be back in session in May, and AARP North Carolina is gearing up to advocate for the state’s 1.3 million unpaid family caregivers, who save the state money on long-term care costs. Topping the legislative agenda is the Caregiver Advise, Record, Enable (CARE) Act, which would allow every hospital patient to designate a family caregiver—and would require hospitals to make reasonable efforts to show caregivers how to perform medical tasks their loved ones will need at home. …

— By Tim Poor The General Assembly’s budget cuts this year directly affected thousands of older adults on low incomes, but Jinny Hopp is hoping the 2018 session will reverse the impact. Reductions in spending for home- and community-based care eliminated services to about 8,300 older and disabled Missourians. The expiration of a program to help pay for medications will affect more than 60,000. Hopp, an AARP volunteer in Carthage who leads a caregiver support group, said the cuts will make …

— By Michelle R. Davis During his career as a journalist, Jim Gutman had to keep his opinions to himself. As the vice president and managing editor at a health care news publishing company, he needed to remain objective, staying outside the fray of politics. But when he retired in 2016, he could move from observer to participant. Gutman said he had long admired AARP, after watching the group’s lobbying efforts concerning Medicare Part D. “Once I retired, I wanted to …

— The General Assembly is set to convene Jan. 10, and AARP Maryland is gearing up to advocate on several issues important to Marylanders age 50-plus. Leading the list of legislative priorities is prevention of elder abuse and exploitation. The AARP state office also aims to ensure all Marylanders have access to phone and broadband service and to protect state teachers’ and public employees’ pensions. Affordable, reliable utilities will also be a focus. Want to get involved in these issues? To …