The DC Coalition on Long Term Care converged on Wednesday, September 14th for its monthly meeting at Iona Senior Services. The first topic of discussion was a report on the latest data from the Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) on Elderly and Persons with Physical Disabilities (EPD) Waiver applicants. The data presented covered EPD Waiver applicants from March 25 – August 26, 2016, and any progress made in their potential enrollment processes. Presenters used visual representations to describe the demographics of the applicants, identify trends in the data, and prompt questions about efficiency and potential barriers.
Lourdine Jean-Francois, LDC, the Lead Medicaid Enrollment Supervisor for the ADRC, was on the phone to address some of the concerns regarding timeliness of the application process. She also shared other challenges with the Coalition, including difficulties about getting physician signatures for the 1728 Level of Care form, as well as Prescription Order Forms (POF). According to Ms. Francois, much of the backup in getting applicants through to the Economic Security Administration came from being unable to issue Level of Care documents. This information was important for many of the Coalition members who represent clients that rely on the EPD Waiver to remain in the community. According to Brian Footer, MPA, Director of Policy, Planning and Evaluation, the DHCF/ADRC staff will eliminate the 1728 Level of Care form in January and it will be replaced by a revised POF to be used by Delmarva for all ACA service requests.
A representative from Seabury Resources for Aging also stopped by the meeting to inform the Coalition about the ConnectorCard – a federally subsidized transportation card available to all D.C. residents over the age of 60 and those ages 18-59 with disabilities. The ConnectorCard works on a sliding scale of payment based on income, with users paying anywhere from $12 to $35 per month for a transportation fare card worth $50. The fare card works like a debit card and can be used towards Metrorail and Metro Buses, MetroAccess, Amtrak, taxis, and more. Click here for more information on the Seabury Resources ConnectorCard.
The “Voices of Wisdom: Conversation Club” was also announced as a new initiative sponsored by the George Washington University’s Center for Aging, Health, and Humanities in conjunction with Age-Friendly DC and So Others Might Eat (SOME). The goal of the club is to serve as a discussion group for D.C. residents over the age of 50, particularly those who are homebound, and allow them to engage with the community and have their voices heard. Conversations take place through telephone conference calls and are facilitated by social workers. Call 202-750-0986 for more information.
Finally, Ron Swanda from the Commission on Aging announced progress on the D.C. Paid Family Leave Bill, which several D.C. council members have pledged to pass by the end of the year. This bill represents a major step forward for all workers in D.C., including the thousands of direct-care workers who often struggle with financial stability and job quality. According to The Washington Times, “Interim council member Robert White, at-large Democrat, said during his swearing-in ceremony last week that he is ready to get a ‘robust’ family leave package passed.”
Members also discussed the “Just Hours” Campaign to get the Hours and Scheduling Stability Act officially passed. This campaign is sponsored by the D.C. Jobs with Justice Coalition, and seeks to “usher in responsible standards and stable employment opportunities” for low-wage workers in the District. With the D.C. Council back in action after a 2-month recess, we are excited to see continued momentum on legislation that will improve the long-term care workforce. Check out and http://dcjusthours.org/ for more information.