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HCAOA WEEKLY NEWSLETTER
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The HCAOA Weekly is a brief update that will be distributed to HCAOA members each week. This communication complements our quarterly newsletter, The Voice, and will provide a vehicle for ensuring a regular flow of information on a more frequent basis. With ever evolving information in the home care industry, we want to ensure the lines of communication remain open and members have a source for quick, valuable news at their fingertips.
Table of Contents

Member News

Chapter News

Congressional Update

Congressional Corner

Member News

Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General Seeks HCAOA Input


HCAOA was recently contacted by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Inspector General (OIG) requesting information on reported concerns related to  delayed payments to contracted companies providing home care services. HCAOA has previously reported on VA payment delays along with other concerns with the department’s payment system. The OIG is charged with conducting effective oversight of the programs and operations of the VA through independent audits, inspections, reviews, and investigations. In that regard, the OIG is interested in hearing from home care providers who have had problems with delays in payment by the VA. If you have experienced problems with delayed payments, the OIG wants to hear from you. Please send an email to info@hcaoa.org for information on how HCAOA can assist you in sharing your concerns.
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Join the HCAOA Conference Committee! 


Looking to become more involved in the HCAOA? Now is your chance! The HCAOA is currently seeking volunteers to join the Conference Committee and plan the 2019 Annual Leadership Conference that will be held September 22-23 at the JW Marriott Tucson Starr Pass in Tucson, AZ. 

Some Conference Committee benefits include:
  • Receive FREE conference registration to the 2019 Annual Leadership Conference 
  • Network with other HCAOA Members & Board Members
  • Share your thoughts and ideas to improve future conferences
If you are interested in joining the Committee that shapes the Annual Leadership Conference, please complete the interest form here by Friday, February 1 for more information. Please contact Andrea Liford-Martinez at andrea@hcaoa.org with any questions. 
Chapter News

HCAOA South Carolina


HCAOA South Carolina Monthly Meeting

The HCAOA South Carolina Chapter will be meeting monthly in 2019. The first meeting of the year took place on Wednesday, January 23 at The Crossings at Five Forks Assisted Living in Simpsonville, SC. The event was sponsored by Kindred at Home and Kindred Hospice and refreshments were provided courtesy of The Crossings at Five Forks Assisted Living.

The meeting included a speaker, Mike Mahon, an Alzheimer's and Dementia Specialist Educator who presented on "Dementia: Advice on ways to help home care providers explain to their families the realities of this disease with love and understanding." Mr. Mahon did an amazing job of teaching attendees things they didn't know or hadn’t considered about dementia patients. He provided some excellent tips for providing care for dementia sufferers, including:
  1. Using headphones with ambient noise and sounds related to the patient's life. Podcasts are available that can emulate busy streets, farm noises, etc.  
  2. Explaining the correlations between dementia stages and behavior changes, such as when the mid-brain is impacted then social filters disappear.
  3. Coaching attendees on ways to improve communication with dementia clients.
During the business portion of the meeting, HCAOA South Carolina Chapter Chair, Akin Watson discussed chapter plans regarding lobbyists and how the chapter is planning to meet around the state to promote membership. 
HCAOA SC Chapter leaders with meeting attendees
Save the Date for the February HCAOA South Carolina Chapter meeting which will be a virtual meeting via phone to be held on Wednesday, February 27. More details to follow.
 


HCAOA Washington


In-Home Services Day

Day/Time: Wednesday, February 6, 2019, 7:00 AM
Location: Washington Library Room in the lower level of the Prichard Building
415 Sid Snyder Avenue SW, Olympia, WA 98504.

Sponsored by The Home Care Association of WA, WA State Hospice and Palliative Care Organization and the Washington Chapter of the Home Care Association of America

For the past seven years, the HCAOA Washington chapter has joined forces to meet with Washington State legislators to discuss important issues for In-Home Services agencies licensed under the Department of Health (DOH). In the real world, home health, hospice and home care agencies work cooperatively together all the time. Our associations typically have a very similar legislative agenda and legislators really appreciate the fact that we coordinate this day together instead of three different meetings! It’s also a fun way to get to know other in-home services providers from around the state and in your region.

The legislative session starts on January 14, 2019. We are contacting legislators early this year because our legislative day is less than a month away! As a reminder, Washington State has a biennial legislature where they develop the Operating Budget in the long 105-day session.

Please contact your local legislators and set up a meeting on February 6, 2019. Here is a link to find out who your state legislators are: http://app.leg.wa.gov/DistrictFinder/. Please use your home address and not your business location as they want to meet with their constituents who live in their districts.

Once you've made appointments, please send Leslie Emerick your appointment times at lesemerick@lkemerick.com. Leslie needs your legislative district, your legislators names and your contact information for the day. If you need additional assistance, please call 360-280-6142. We have some legislative districts that overlap between constituents and Leslie tries to consolidate those meetings. All meetings will be on the master agenda for the day.

Please begin calls for legislative appointments ASAP as their schedules will fill up quickly during the session!

Please schedule appointments to begin after 8:00 AM so that attendees can participate in the morning advocacy training activities. Most appointments can be scheduled via an email request, although it is often better to call the legislator's office directly. Some legislative assistants may request information regarding the issues we plan to present. Just explain to them what in home services are (home health, hospice and home care) and we will be talking about issues related to these services.

We will be in the Washington Library Room in the lower level of the Prichard Building. It’s a great room and we have it reserved until 2:00 pm. Food is available in two cafeterias on the Capital Campus. Dome Deli in the Capital Building and the Prichard Library Cafeteria.

Parking is not easy on campus but will be accessible early in the morning at the Visitor’s Center. Please pay for 8 hours of parking at the pay station so you don’t have to worry. It takes credit cards or cash. For additional parking see: Visitor Parking

Draft Schedule for In-Home Services Day, February 6, 2019
7:00-8:00 AM: Welcome and Introductions (Coffee and muffins or bagels provided)
  • Orientation, overview of Political Landscape
  • Review In-Home Services 2019 Legislative Priorities/Song Sheet
  • Review Handouts for Legislators
8:00 AM-4:00 PM
Legislative Visits Begin! Leslie will develop the legislative schedule as you begin to send her your appointment times. The constituent in the meeting should talk first about their agency and issues. Leslie will try to mix people from the three associations and regionally at a meeting if possible. It’s a great way to get to know your legislators and fellow in-home services providers. Rule number one: Be flexible and have fun! Wear comfortable walking shoes and dress semi-formally for meetings. It may be cold so dress appropriately for the weather.

This may look overwhelming to the new participants, but don’t worry! We have a training in the morning to go over the talking points for the day and put you with more experienced attendees.
 


HCAOA Connecticut


New Social Services Commissioner Expected to be Named by Governor
Governor Ned Lamont has re-appointed nine state agency commissioners, but he doesn’t plan to reappoint Roderick Bremby, Commissioner of the Department of Social Services, according to CT NewsJunkie.

Bremby, who was appointed in March 2011 by former Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, will remain commissioner until the end of February.

The Lamont administration is conducting a national search for Bremby’s successor and is consulting with people like Andy Slavitt, who served as acting administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services in the Obama administration.

“Governor Lamont thanks Rod Bremby for his leadership at DSS,” Maribel La Luz, Lamont’s communications director, said. “As its longest serving commissioner, Bremby was integral in the launch of the department’s self-insured Medicaid program, which leads the nation in cost stability and improved quality health outcomes. In addition, he led efforts to modernize the agency to better serve its clients and enhance partnerships with supporting organizations. DSS is better positioned for future success, thanks to Commissioner Bremby’s leadership.”

“I am deeply grateful to Governors Malloy and Lamont for the opportunity to serve the residents of Connecticut,” Bremby said. “Further, I am grateful to have had the privilege to serve with colleagues at DSS who come to work each and every day focused on customers, over self.”

Many home care companies participate in programs administered by DSS, including the Connecticut Home Care Program for the Elderly and the Connecticut Medical Assistance Program.

HCAOA Connecticut Meeting

Please join your fellow members, employer-based home care providers, industry colleagues and others for the next HCAOA Connecticut Meeting. 
 
The meeting will include a legislative advocacy and public policy report by chapter lobbyist Matthew Hallisey. A discussion about a winter educational program concerning live-in care, featuring Connecticut Department of Labor officials. Care at Home Day at the Capitol, co-sponsored with ACHA, to be held Wednesday April 3, 2019, and a roundtable discussion of issues affecting home care agency owners.
 
When: Wednesday, February 13 | 11:30 am - 1:30 pm
Where: Esca Restaurant & Wine Bar | 437 Main Street, Middletown, CT
Cost: $20 for members, $40 for nonmembers, registration includes cost of lunch
 
Click HERE to register.
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HCAOA Virginia


Save the Date

Please save the date for the HCAOA Virginia chapter meeting on Wednesday, February 27, 2019.

We will be meeting in multiple locations connected together remotely. You are welcome to attend any location. The meeting will be free for members. Keep an eye on your inbox for more details and a registration link coming shortly. If you have any questions, please contact Nataly Schwartz at nataly@hcaoa.org
 


HCAOA Florida


Save the Date

Please save the date for the HCAOA Florida 2019 Lobby Day to be held on March 27, 2019.

Keep an eye on your inbox for more details and a registration link coming shortly. If you have any questions, please contact Nataly Schwartz at nataly@hcaoa.org
 


HCAOA Ohio


Save the Date

Please save the date for the HCAOA Ohio 2019 Lobby Day to be held on March 27, 2019.

Keep an eye on your inbox for more details and a registration link coming shortly. If you have any questions, please contact Nataly Schwartz at nataly@hcaoa.org
Congressional Update

HCAOA Submits Comments on Joint Employer Proposed Rule


On January 28, 2019, HCAOA submitted comments to the National Labor Relations Board with respect to its proposed rule titled “The Standard for Determining Joint-Employer Status,” originally issued on September 14, 2018.
 
HCAOA strongly supports the NLRB reestablishing a standard of joint employment that is consistent with the proposed rules text, in which an employer can be deemed a joint employer only if it possesses and actually exercises substantial, direct and immediate control over the essential terms and conditions of employment of another employer’s employees.

Elder Care Tax Credit Bill Introduced


Congresswoman Barbara Lee (CA-13) introduced the Elder Care Tax Credit (H.R.323) on January 8, 2019, a bill designed to ease the financial burden on the growing number of families with multi-generational care-giving responsibilities. Rep. Lee believes her Elder Care Tax Credit will give families more financial flexibility as they juggle work and care-giving responsibilities for aging relatives. Caregivers would receive a credit worth up to $1,200 per year. This tax credit would be an important step in ensuring all families have the resources to adequately provide for care-giving expenses.
 
On average, Rep. Lee states that caregivers spend $5,530 annually on the care of their aging relatives. As a result, many caregivers have reported cutting back on their own healthcare spending, or reducing hours at work, to provide their relatives with the care they need.
 
The Elder Care Tax Credit would build upon the existing Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit by offering financial support for qualified care expenses to families caring for aging relatives not defined as dependent.

Disability Integration Act of 2019 Introduced


On January 15, 2019, Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) introduced the Disability Integration Act (S.117) which prohibits states or local governments that provide institutional placements for individuals with disabilities who need long-term assistance with daily living activities or health-related tasks, and prohibits insurance providers that fund such long-term services, from denying community-based services that would enable such individuals to live in the community and lead an independent life.
 
States, local governments, or insurance providers may not discriminate against such individuals in the provision of community-based services by: (1) imposing prohibited eligibility criteria, cost caps, waiting lists, or payment structures; (2) failing to provide a specific community-based service; or (3) requiring an individual to receive a service in a congregate or disability-specific setting.
Community-based services must be offered to individuals with such disabilities prior to institutionalization. Institutionalized individuals must be notified regularly of community-based alternatives.
 
States, local governments, and public insurance providers must assess: (1) transportation barriers that prevent individuals from receiving services in integrated settings, and (2) the availability of integrated employment opportunities.
 
The Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) must issue regulations requiring states, local governments, or insurance providers to offer community-based long-term services to individuals with such disabilities who would otherwise qualify for institutional placement. State and local governments, in conjunction with housing agencies, must ensure sufficient availability of affordable, accessible, and integrated housing that is not a disability-specific residential setting or a setting where services are tied to tenancy.
Congressional Corner

Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA)


 
Rep. Barbara Lee serves as a member of the House Appropriations Committee and the House Budget Committee. Born in El Paso, Texas, the daughter of an Army lieutenant colonel and his wife, Lee was a divorced single mother of two sons receiving public assistance when she began attending Mills College in Oakland.
She served as president of Mills College's Black Student Union. Lee invited Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm, the first African American woman elected to Congress, to speak on campus and as a result of that meeting, Lee registered to vote for the first time. She went on to work on Chisholm's presidential campaign, and served as her delegate at the 1972 Democratic National Convention in Miami. She became involved in the civil rights movement in Oakland and worked on the unsuccessful mayoral campaign of Black Panther co-founder Bobby Seale in 1973.
 
After graduating, she earned a master's degree in social work from the University of California-Berkeley. An internship for Rep. Ron Dellums (D-Calif.) led to jobs on his staff in Oakland and Washington.

In 1990 she was elected to the state Assembly, serving there for six years before moving to the state Senate, where she was in her first term when Dellums resigned from the House in early 1998.

Home Care Association of America
444 N. Capitol Street NW, Suite 397, Washington, DC 20001
Phone: 800-22-HCAOA Email: info@hcaoa.org  Website: www.hcaoa.org

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