From The Executive Director......

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IMPORTANT NOTICE TO THE AGING NETWORK– COVID-19 – 6th Release, August 19, 2020

TO:             ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS, & ECIAAA SERVICE PROVIDERS
FROM:       Susan C. Real, Executive Director
DATE:        August 19, 2020
RE:            
ECIAAA COVID-19 AGING NETWORK UPDATE– REACTION TO ACTION!


ECIAAA COVID-19 Aging Network Update.
The Aging Network has continued to respond heroically to the coronavirus pandemic. To support such efforts, the U.S. Congress has passed two major emergency funding packages to support Older Americans Act services. Please find a description of both funding packages listed below.

Family First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) & Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act of 2020.

ECIAAA awarded $502,360 in FFCRA OAA III-C2 (home delivered meal) funds to Peace Meal Senior Nutrition, CRIS Health-Aging Center, and Catholic Charities Meals on Wheels for the purchase and delivery of shelf stable meals. NOTE: Since the end of March, PSA 05 nutrition providers distributed 75,481 shelf-stable meals, while adding 1,105 new nutrition participants to the rolls.

ECIAAA has awarded CARES Act funding outlined below to Area Agency-funded nutrition providers, Senior Information Services/Coordinated Points of Entry (SIS/CPoE) providers, and Caregiver Advisory programs.

  • Title III-B $275,124
  • Title III-C Nutrition Services- $1,085,097
  • Title III-E Family Caregiver Support Services - $223,572

The CARES Act funding will provide additional emergency support to Older Americans Act programming for seniors in general.

FEMA Shelf Stable Meals: During the week of June 14, 2020, ECIAAA received 45,600 FEMA emergency shelf stable meals for distribution to older adults in Illinois. Peace Meal received 35,100 meals which were delivered to their central kitchens located in Bloomington, Mattoon and Rantoul. CRIS received a total of 10,000 meals delivered to Danville. Catholic Charities received a total of 500 meals. We want to express our sincere appreciation to Julie Bobitt, ECIAAA Advisory Council member, and her husband Jim Bobitt of Manito Transit, for organizing the complicated logistics tied to the FEMA Meals shipment and delivery to PSA 05 nutrition providers.

Personal Protective Equipment
Cloth Masks. In June, ECIAAA received 26,500 cloth masks from IEMA/FEMA. The masks have been distributed to Senior Centers (57%), SIS/CPoE providers (26%), Nutrition providers (15%) and Legal Service providers (2%).

Face Shields from InstaShield. The Area Agencies on Aging have partnered with the Retirement Research Foundation to distribute face shields produced by InstaShield free of charge to the Illinois Aging Network. ECIAAA-funded service providers have ordered 2,600 to date.

Illinois COVID-19 Response Fund (ICRF)
The Fund was established by the United Way of Illinois and the Alliance of Illinois Community Foundations, in collaboration with the Office of the Governor. Funds awarded to ECIAAA SIS/CPoE providers are to be used for basic supplies, interim housing and shelter, primary health care services, utility and financial assistance.

  • 1st Round - $17,075
  • 2nd Round - $ 45,072

Target Population: Older Adults 60+, Persons Under 60 with Disabilities, and Grandparents Raising Grandchildren 55 and Older.

Illinois Care Connections - Reducing Social Isolation Connectivity Assistance Program
The Illinois Department on Aging and the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) received $1.7 million through the CARES Act to provide services to older adults and persons with disabilities who are socially isolated as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Illinois Care Connections will provide technology devices such as iPads or Tablets to help facilitate social connections with family and friends. This initiative is in partnership with the Illinois Assistive Technology Program (IATP).

CENSUS 2020 Outreach. ECIAAA-funded service providers have on average, reached 2,863 older adults per month through creative CENSUS 2020 outreach strategies. Social media campaigns by both ECIAAA and service providers have reached on average, 7,412 people per month. The U.S. Census Bureau recently announced that they will reissue paper surveys to households in under-reported census tracks. ECIAAA’s response rate is close to the Illinois average at 68.7%. However, this is below the final count reported (70%) during 2010. ECIAAA and service providers are making a final push to promote the CENSUS 2020 during the remaining months of the CENSUS 2020 count (ends September 30).

Senior Centers Re-Opening Guidance: The Illinois Department on Aging, in consultation with the Illinois Department of Public Health, has issued Minimum Requirements for Resuming In-Person Services at Senior Centers. Senior Centers are directed to follow Restore Illinois guidelines for occupancy requirements, IPDH guidelines for social distancing and use of PPE. Senior Centers have been directed to also use the COVID-19 Screening Tool for Senior Centers. Senior centers continue providing virtual activity programs and have instituted friendly caller programs. Senior centers have coordinated volunteer networks to address critical needs such as grocery delivery and pharmaceutical delivery.

Congregate Meal Sites Remain Suspended. Under the direction of IDOA, Area Agencies on Aging are prohibited from reinstating congregate nutrition sites. However, congregate participants are still being served using the alternate congregate delivery methods (carry-out, drive-thru, curbside pickup). Senior Centers hosting congregate nutrition programs have helped nutrition providers coordinate meal pick-up for participants.

Long-Term Care Facilities: The ECIAAA’s Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program (LTCOP) continues to advocate on behalf of vulnerable adults living in long-term care facilities. Under the direction of Kelly Richards, IDoA State Ombudsman, ECIAAA’s Regional Ombudsman, Angie Baker, is collaborating with facility administrators to address existing and potential COVID-19 threat in 161 long-term facilities in east central Illinois.

Reducing Social Isolation in east central Illinois: The COVID-19 pandemic continues to exacerbate the dangers of social isolation for older adults. However, PSA 05 service providers have tackled the challenges by creating opportunities using technology. In addition to friendly caller programs, many senior programs have instituted smart speaker technology utilizing Alexa to keep in touch, and many have had success with Zoom Video Conferencing when conducting special programs and facilitate group chats.

Additional Resources: You can learn more by clicking on the Illinois Department of Public Health’s COVID-19 Red Link on ECIAAA’s website at www.eciaaa.org. Plus, you will also find on the website the ECIAAA COVID-19 Comprehensive Resources.

ECIAAA stands ready to support the Aging Network. Please do not hesitate in contacting us at 1-800-888-4456 with your questions. Thank you all for your dedication as we continue to support older adults, family caregivers, and grandparents raising grandchildren in east central Illinois. Be Safe!

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IMPORTANT NOTICE TO THE AGING NETWORK– COVID-19 – 5th Release, May 20, 2020

TO:             ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS, & ECIAAA SERVICE PROVIDERS
FROM:       Susan C. Real, Executive Director
DATE:        May 20, 2020
RE:             ECIAAA COVID-19 AGING NETWORK UPDATE– REACTION TO ACTION!

May is Older Americans Month!  During the difficult time of COVID-19, we cannot lose sight of why we are doing such important work - serving older adults. ECIAAA invites you to Make your Mark: May 2020! This year’s theme was selected to encourage and celebrate countless contributions that older adults make to our communities. In honor of Older Americans Month, ECIAAA is inviting you to share a story of how an older adult made a difference in your life. The Older Americans Month Anthology Project is posted on our website (www.eciaaa.org) where you can share your story. We will compile all stories into an Anthology, which will be posted on ECIAAA’s website and shared on social media. A note of appreciation to Orsi Ficsor, ECIAAA Stevenson Fellow, for developing this wonderful opportunity to honor our elders during Older Americans Month. We look forward to hearing from you!

Illinois Restore.  Earlier this month, Governor Pritzker released his reopening plan – Restore Illinois. You can review the plan by clicking on the Illinois Department of Public Health’s COVID-19 Red Link on ECIAAA’s website at www.eciaaa.org. Please note, ECIAAA is concerned that the Governor’s plan does not address specific health issues experienced by older adults during this process. ECIAAA is working with the Illinois Association of Area Agencies to request an overlay to the Illinois Restore Plan to address issues affecting older adults. ECIAAA will also work with IDoA to ensure the safety of older adults when implementing proposed plans to reopen senior centers and congregate programs. 

ECIAAA COVID-19 Aging Network Update.
Since mid-March, the Aging Network has responded heroically to the coronavirus pandemic. To support such efforts, the U.S. Congress has passed two major emergency funding packages to support Older Americans Act services. Please find a description of both funding packages listed below.

Family First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) ECIAAA awarded $502,360 in FFCRA OAA III-C2 (home delivered meal) funds to Peace Meal Senior Nutrition, CRIS Health-Aging Center, and Catholic Charities Meals on Wheels for the purchase and delivery of shelf stable meals.

NOTE:  Since the end of March, PSA 05 nutrition providers are averaging 3,235 meals per day, while adding 452 new nutrition participants to the rolls. The demand for meals will only increase.

Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act of 2020.   The CARES Act was approved and signed by the President on March 27, 2020. For ECIAAA, the CARES Act award provides additional emergency support to Older Americans Act programming and seniors in general. ECIAAA received allocations from the Illinois Department on Aging as described below:  

Title III-B - $275,124
Title III-C Nutrition Services - $1,085,097
Title III-E Family Caregiver Support Services - $223,572
Title VII Regional Ombudsman Program - $54,347

NOTE:  ECIAAA is planning for the utilization of the CARES Act funding in consultation with Area Agency-funded service providers. The CARES Act authorizes funding through September 30, 2021.  

Coordinated Points of Entry (CPoE) /Senior Information Services (SIS):   CPoE/SIS providers in PSA 05 continue to provide information and assistance services to clients via phone call or email. CPoE/SIS providers are directed to provide services such as Benefit Access Applications (BAA), Senior Health Assistance Program services (SHAP), and Senior Health Insurance Program (SHIP) services over the phone. In response to reducing social isolation among clients, some CPoE/SIS providers have instituted new telephone reassurance programs during the pandemic. CARES Act funding will support certain needs identified by the CPoE/SIS providers. Service providers report the need for PPE for staff and clients (masks). The lack of internet connectivity has been a challenge in serving clients in rural areas. In partnership with service providers, ECIAAA will initiate creative efforts to secure viable internet access in deficient areas within PSA 05. Additional support will be considered to help CPoE/SIS providers upgrade computer equipment and technology to better serve older adults access benefits and services.

Caregiver Advisory Programs:  Caregiver advisors are keeping in touch with caregivers and grandparents raising grandchildren by conducting telephonic/virtual caregiver support services. There has been a marked increase in the number of caregivers/grandparents/relatives raising grandchildren/children served since the pandemic started. When comparing caregivers/grandparents raising grandchildren served from February to March, ECIAAA Caregiver Advisors reported an increase of 106%, and another 43% increase when comparing March to April performance. ECIAAA plans to pilot TCARE (Tailored Caregiver Assessment and Referral) - an evidence-based, ACL-accredited care management program designed to support family members who are providing care to adults with chronic or acute health conditions with CARES Act funding. TCARE will offer Caregiver Advisors a more effective and efficient way to conduct caregiver assessments and care plans to better serve caregivers.

Nutrition Providers:  Meals continue to be provided as a home delivered meal or as a take-out/drive through meal (alternate congregate delivery method).  Nutrition providers report that overall food costs and supplies have increased due to the pandemic.  Nutrition providers have not experienced a loss in volunteers or paid delivery drivers during the pandemic.  Volunteers have stepped up to the challenge.  The CARES Act funding will allow nutrition providers to purchase additional emergency meals later this year.  In addition, the CARES Act funding will serve as an opportunity to address the overall nutrition needs of our most vulnerable clients.    

Senior Centers:  Senior Centers hosting congregate nutrition programs have helped nutrition providers coordinate meal pick-up for participants. Many senior centers have developed virtual activity programs and instituted friendly caller programs. Senior centers have coordinated volunteer networks to address critical needs such as grocery delivery and pharmaceutical delivery.  

Long-Term Care Facilities:  Illinois Long-Term Care Facilities have been severely affected by COVID-19 cases. According to the Illinois Department of Public Health statistics, 44% of total deaths reported due to the coronavirus in Illinois as of May 1, 2020 are tied to nursing homes. Facilities in Decatur and Bloomington have had major outbreaks. The ECIAAA’s Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program (LTCOP) continues to advocate telephonically on behalf of vulnerable adults living in long-term care facilities. Under the direction of Kelly Richards, IDoA State Ombudsman, ECIAAA’s Regional Ombudsman, Angie Baker, is collaborating with facility administrators to address existing and potential COVID-19 threat in 161 long-term facilities in east central Illinois.

Reducing Social Isolation in east central Illinois:   The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the dangers of social isolation for older adults. However, PSA 05 service providers have tackled the challenges by creating opportunities using technology. In addition to friendly caller programs, many senior centers have instituted technology such as Smart Speakers connected to Alexa and Zoom Video Conferencing to conduct special programs and facilitate group chats.

FEMA Shelf Stable Meals:  We received word that the Illinois Department on Aging has finalized its partnership with FEMA in securing emergency shelf stable meals for distribution to older adults in Illinois. ECIAAA is slated to receive a shipment of 14,100 meals per week for four (4) weeks. Anticipated delivery date is still pending. We want to express our sincere appreciation to Julie Bobitt, ECIAAA Advisory Council member, and Julie’s husband Jim Bobitt, for organizing the complicated logistics tied to the FEMA Meals shipment and delivery to PSA 05 nutrition providers by McLeod Trucking located in Decatur, IL.

Illinois COVID-19 Response Fund (ICRF):  We are pleased to announce that ECIAAA has received $17,075 from a $250,000 grant the Illinois Association of Area Agencies on Aging (I4A) received from ICRF. The Fund was established by the United Way of Illinois and the Alliance of Illinois Community Foundations, in collaboration with the Office of the Governor. These funds have been directly granted to ECIAAA CPoE/SIS providers to support COVID-19 gap-filling requests for both older adults and individuals with disabilities under the age of 60.

Additional Resources:  You can learn more by clicking on the Illinois Department of Public Health’s COVID-19 Red Link on ECIAAA’s website at www.eciaaa.org. Plus, you will also find on the website ECIAAA’s COVID-19 Comprehensive Resources for Senior Citizen Preparedness & Community-Based Organization Preparedness.

ECIAAA stands ready to support the Aging Network. Please do not hesitate in contacting us at 1-800-888-4456 with your questions. Thank you all for your dedication as we continue to support today, while planning for tomorrow.  Be Safe!

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IMPORTANT NOTICE TO THE AGING NETWORK– COVID-19 – 4th Release, April 14, 2020

TO:           ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS, & ECIAAA SERVICE PROVIDERS
FROM:     Susan C. Real, Executive Director
DATE:      April 14, 2020
RE:           ECIAAA COVID-19 AGING NETWORK UPDATE – REACTION TO ACTION!

Over the past month, the Aging Network has responded heroically to the coronavirus pandemic. To support such efforts, the U.S. Congress has passed two major emergency funding packages to support Older Americans Act services.

Family First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) for the Title III-C Nutrition Program. Earlier in March, Congress approved $250 M in Title III-C funding. ECIAAA’s (PSA 05) award mounts to $502,360 in Title III-C2 (home delivered meal) funding which will be allocated to PSA 05 Home Delivered Meal service providers for the purchase of shelf stable meals (2-week supply).
Since the end of March, PSA 05 nutrition providers are averaging 3,500 meals per day while
adding 200 new nutrition participants to the rolls. The demand for meals will only increase.

Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act of 2020. The CARES Act was
approved and signed by the President on March 27, 2020. The CARES Act provides additional
emergency support to Older Americans Act programming and seniors in general.

  • Title III-C Nutrition Services- $480 M
  • Title III-B Supportive Services- $200 M
  • Title III-E Family Caregiver Support Services - $100 M
  • Title VII Elder Rights Protection Activities - $20 M
  • Aging & Disability Resource Centers - $50 M

NOTE: CARES Act funding has not been distributed by the Administration for Community Living (ACL) to state units on aging; therefore, a final award to PSA 05 cannot be reported at this time. ECIAAA will take immediate action once we receive notification from the Illinois Department on Aging.

Coordinated Points of Entry (CPoE) /Senior Information Services (SIS): CPoE/SIS providers in PSA 05 continue to provide information and assistance services to clients via phone call or email. CPoE/SIS providers are directed to provide services such as Benefit Access Applications (BAA), Senior Health Assistance Program services (SHAP), and Senior Health Insurance Program (SHIP) services over the phone. As of March, service providers have provided direct assistance with Benefit Access Applications (BAA) to a total of 2,900 applicants (YTD).

Caregiver Advisory Programs: Caregiver advisors are keeping in touch with caregivers and grandparents raising grandchildren by conducting telephonic/virtual caregiver support services.

Senior Centers: Senior Centers hosting congregate nutrition programs have helped nutrition providers coordinate meal pick-up for participants. Many senior centers have developed virtual activity programs and instituted friendly caller programs. Senior centers have coordinated volunteer networks to address critical needs such as grocery delivery and pharmaceutical delivery.

Long-Term Care Facilities: ECIAAA’s Regional Ombudsman Program continues to advocate telephonically on behalf of vulnerable adults living in long-term care facilities. Under the direction of Kelly Richards, IDoA State Ombudsman, ECIAAA’s Regional Ombudsman, Angie Baker, is collaborating with facility administrators to address the potential COVID-19 threat in 161 long-term facilities in east central Illinois.

Reducing Social Isolation in east central Illinois: The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated the dangers of social isolation for older adults. However, PSA 05 service providers have tackled the challenges by creating opportunities using technology. In addition to friendly caller programs, many senior centers have instituted technology such as Smart Speakers connected to Alexa and Zoom Video Conferencing to conduct special programs and facilitate group chats.

Personal Protective Equipment - Pending: Illinois Association of Area Agencies on Aging (I4A) is partnering with the Illinois Department on Aging and the Illinois Department of Public Health to secure disposable N-95 masks and medical gloves as a protection for in-home care staff, senior service staff, and volunteers delivering home delivered meals, groceries and medicines. PPE for medical personnel remain top priority; however, our order is pending for PSA 05.

FEMA Shelf Stable Meals - Pending: The Illinois Department on Aging has pursued a partnership with FEMA in securing emergency shelf stable meals for distribution to older adults in Illinois. ECIAAA has placed an order of 2,280 daily meals on behalf of PSA 05 OAA nutrition providers. Please note, IDoA is still negotiating with FEMA on the delivery of emergency meals to the Aging Network.

Illinois COVID-19 Response Fund (ICRF): We are pleased to announce that the Illinois Association of Area Agencies on Aging (I4A) received a $250,000 grant from ICRF. The Fund was established by the United Way of Illinois and the Alliance of Illinois Community Foundations, in collaboration with the Office of the Governor. ECIAAA will receive $17,075 through the I4A ICRF grant award. These funds will be directly granted to ECIAAA CPoE/SIS providers.

Recruitment of Volunteers: ECIAAA is looking for volunteers to support the PSA 05 Aging Network. ECIAAA is recruiting volunteers to assist with grocery shopping, food and medication delivery, and telephone reassurance; please refer to attached flyers. For more information, please contact Amber Johnson, Executive Services at 309-829-2065, ext. 205 or by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Additional Resources: Please check out ECIAAA’s Website (www.eciaaa.org) for up to date COVID-19 information from the Illinois Department of Public Health. We have also attached the ECIAAA COVID-19 Comprehensive List of Senior Citizen Preparedness Resources.

ECIAAA stands ready to support the Aging Network. Please do not hesitate in contacting us at 1-800-888-4456 with your questions. Thank you all for your dedication as we continue to support today, while planning for tomorrow. Please, Be Safe, and Be Well!

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IMPORTANT NOTICE TO THE AGING NETWORK– COVID-19 – 3rd Release, March 25, 2020

TO:           ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS, & ECIAAA SERVICE PROVIDERS
FROM:     Susan C. Real, Executive Director
DATE:      March 25, 2020
RE:           ECIAAA COVID-19 AGING NETWORK – REACTION TO ACTION!

In response to Governor Pritzker’s Executive Order to stay at home, ECIAAA is operating with a skeleton crew to ensure we are available to support service providers with programmatic matters and fiscal matters. Illinois older adults are among the highest risk population group for becoming seriously ill from COVID-19. Services to older adults are considered “essential,” so we are working with service providers to make sure services continue. PSA 05 updates are noted below:

Nutrition Services.   ECIAAA-funded nutrition providers serve over 7,800 eligible participants in both the congregate meal (4,345) and home delivered meal (3,455) programs in PSA 05.

  • Congregate Meals:  ECIAAA-funded nutrition programs continue providing meals to congregate participants in an alternative format (i.e. “carry-out”, “drive-thru”, or a “home-delivered meal”). Senior Centers hosting congregate sites have been working with nutrition providers to facilitate this effort. For the most part, senior nutrition services hosted by restaurant programs are also complying with the “carry-out”, “drive-thru”, or “curb-side” pick up order. Certain restaurant owners reported they were relieved that they could still serve seniors in their community.
  • Home Delivered Meals:  Service to home delivered meal participants continue. We expect demand for this service to grow. ECIAAA is exploring the possible bulk purchase of shelf-stable meals to address the expanded need.  ECIAAA, in coordination with IDoA and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), will order 2,280 shelf-stable meals per day for distribution to eligible participants by PSA 05 nutrition providers. 

Senior Centers have been requested to suspend all social activities in group settings in PSA 05.

Community Care Program Adult Day Services:  All Community Care Program-sponsored Adult Day Services (ADS) remain closed throughout Illinois. Backup plans will be established to ensure services are provided to current ADS participants.

Community Care Program (CCP) Services: CCP eligibility activities will continue; however, Coordination Units are conducting all eligibility determinations, reassessments, and follow-up activities by phone. CCP In-Home Services and Emergency Home Response Services will continue as authorized.   

Adult Protective Services (APS): APS investigations, casework, and follow-up will continue via phone; however, APS agencies have been directed to discontinue client in-home visits. APS victims with Priority I substantiated abuse category will receive wellness checks by law enforcement.

Coordinated Points of Entry (CPoE) /Senior Information Services (SIS):  Effective March 16, 2020, CPoE/SIS providers in PSA 05 were directed to suspend face-to-face appointments with clients unless the service provider deemed them necessary. CPoE/SIS providers are directed to provide services such as Benefit Access Applications (BAA), Senior Health Assistance Program services (SHAP), and Senior Health Insurance Program (SHIP) services over the phone.

Caregiver Advisory Programs:  Effective March 16, 2020, providers PSA 05 to suspended participant home visits and face-to-face appointments, unless the service provider deems them necessary.     

  • NOTE:  If face-to-face visits are absolutely necessary, you are requested to utilize the IDoA screening tool described below:
  • IDoA COVID-19 Screening Tool – for care coordinators, APS caseworkers, Community Care Program providers, and other Aging Network providers
  • Guidance for Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA) COVID-19 Screening/Notice

Long-Term Care Facilities:   ECIAAA’s Regional Ombudsman Program continues to advocate telephonically on behalf of vulnerable adults living in long-term care facilities. Under the direction of Kelly Richards, IDoA State Ombudsman, ECIAAA’s Regional Ombudsman, Angie Baker, is collaborating with facility administrators to address the potential COVID-19 threat in 161 long-term facilities in east central Illinois.

Recruitment of Volunteers:   ECIAAA is looking for volunteers to support the PSA 05 Aging Network. For more information, please contact Amber Johnson, Executive Services at 309-829-2065, ext. 205

PSA 05 Highlights - SERVICE PROVIDER INGENUITY DURING COVID-19!

  • Champaign County: CRIS Healthy-Aging Center gave away (last week) free wellness kits to seniors 60 and older, their caregivers, and grandparents raising grandchildren.
  • Douglas County:  Establishment of new Friendly Call/Telephone Reassurance Programs – Family Service Senior Services
  • Cumberland County: (1) Established a Virtual VITA Site to help older adults complete their taxes online; and, (2) Promoting the CENSUS 2020 when contacting clients – Life Center of Cumberland County
  • Piatt County:  Piatt County Services for Seniors partnering with Piattran (rural public transportation program) and Faith in Action of Piatt County to offer pickup and delivery of groceries and prescriptions to older adults.
  • Vermilion County:  CRIS Healthy-Aging Center will be giving away (this week) free wellness kits to seniors 60 and older, their caregivers, and grandparents raising grandchildren.
  • Several Senior Centers:  Including a roll (or package) of toilet paper weekly to home-bound clients with their meal delivery.

Where to Find Answers and Help?  ECIAAA’s Website has posted a COVID-19 Red Alert from the Illinois Department of Public Health which is updated regularly.  You can find it by accessing www.eciaaa.org  - the COVID-19 Red Alert can be found at the top of ECIAAA’s webpage. Additional resources include:

ECIAAA acknowledges that available resources to help the Aging Network better serve older adults during this emergency are limited. However, we are learning more each day and will share pertinent information as received.  ECIAAA stands ready to support the Aging Network.  Please do not hesitate in contacting us at 1-800-888-4456 with your questions. 

Thank you all for your dedication as we continue to support today, while planning for tomorrow.  Please, Be Safe, and Be Well!

SCR:sr

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IMPORTANT NOTICE TO THE AGING NETWORK– COVID-19 – 2ND Release, March 16, 2020

TO:                 ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS, & ECIAAA SERVICE PROVIDERS
FROM:           Susan C. Real, Executive Director
DATE:            March 16, 2020
RE:                 ECIAAA COVID-19 AGING NETWORK IMPORTANT UPDATES

COVID-19 – On March 13, 2020, President Trump issued a Proclamation on Declaring a National Emergency Concerning the Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Outbreak.  On Monday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) called for the cancellation of in-person events of 10 or more people for the next eight (8) weeks to prevent the spread of coronavirus. As of today, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) announced 105 confirmed cases of coronavirus across Illinois.  This includes one confirmed case reported in Champaign County and one confirmed case in Cumberland County.  Response efforts have evolved rapidly including statewide school closures effective Tuesday, restaurant and bar closures, suspension of church services, and the closure of many public services.   To reduce the spread of the virus, Social Distancing of 6 feet is recommended for everyone.  Illinois older adults are among the highest risk population group for becoming seriously ill from COVID-19.  Therefore, our concerted efforts to respond to this emergency is imperative.

As reported earlier, the Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA) requested all Area Agencies on Aging (AAA), and AAA-funded service providers, to immediately suspend all gathering activities placing our older adults at heightened risk including the provision of congregate meals and social activities in group settings.   Service delivery requirements continue to change.  Please find the most recent updates by service category:

  • Congregate Meals:  On Thursday, March 12, 2020, ECIAAA-funded nutrition providers began suspending meals at congregate sites but were directed to continue the provision of meals to congregate participants using an alternative format (i.e. “carry-out” or a “home-delivered meal”).  According to PSA 05 Nutrition Providers, the alternate method of delivering meals to congregate participants has had its challenges but will continue.
  • Congregate Meals: Senior Centers hosting ECIAAA-funded nutrition programs are requested to support nutrition providers in their efforts to provide congregate meals using the alternative delivery method (i.e. “carry-out meals” or “home delivered meals”) to reduce potential exposure to COVID-19.
  • Congregate Restaurant Programs:  In accordance to Governor Pritzker’s order to close Illinois restaurants, AAA-funded service providers directed PSA 05 Nutrition Providers to continue the provision of meals to congregate participants served by restaurant programs using drive-thru and curbside pickup options.  
  • Home Delivered Meals:  At this time, we do not anticipate any changes to traditional OAA-Home Delivered Meal service provision in PSA 05.
  • Senior Centers are requested to suspend all social activities in group settings in PSA 05.
  • Community Care Program Adult Day Services: As of March 15, 2020, IDoA notified the Illinois Aging Network of the suspension of Community Care Program-sponsored Adult Day Services (ADS) throughout Illinois.  Back-up plans will be established to ensure services are provided to current ADS participants.
  • Community Care Program (CCP) Services: CCP eligibility activities will continue; however, Coordination Units are instructed to discontinue client in-home visits.  All assessments are to be conducted by phone.  CCP In-Home Services and Emergency Home Response Services will continue as authorized.   
  • Adult Protective Services (APS): APS investigations, casework, and follow-up will continue via phone; however, APS agencies have been directed to discontinue client in-home visits.   APS victims with Priority I substantiated abuse category will receive wellness checks by law enforcement.

As the risk to older adults continues to increase, the East Central Illinois Area Agency on Aging is issuing the following directives to Coordinated Points of Entry/Senior Information Services and Caregiver Advisory Programs effective immediately.

Updated CPoE/SIS Guidance Effective March 16, 2020:

Based on updated information from the Illinois Department on Aging shared March 16, 2020, ECIAAA is directing CPoE/ Senior Information Services and Caregiver Advisory providers in PSA 05 to suspend participant home visits and face-to-face appointments unless the service provider deems them necessary.  This directive is effective immediately. 

CPoE/SIS and Caregiver Advisory Providers are to use the IDoA COVID-19 Screen Tool in situations when a face-to-face is being considered. 

Update from the Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA): Specific Direction from the Illinois Department on Aging to the Illinois Aging Network on How to Respond to COVID-19:

  • IDoA COVID-19 Screening Tool – for care coordinators, APS caseworkers, Community Care Program providers, and other Aging Network providers;
  • Guidance for Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA) COVID-19 Screening/Notice;

Where to Find Answers and Help?  ECIAAA’s Website has posted a COVID-19 Red Alert from the Illinois Department of Public Health which is updated regularly.  You can find it by accessing www.eciaaa.org  - the COVID-19 Red Alert can be found at the top of ECIAAA’s webpage.

Additional resources include:

  • ECIAAA COVID-19 Comprehensive List of Senior Citizen Preparedness Resource
  • Flyers:  COVID-19 Symptoms, Handwashing Techniques, Flu vs. COVID-19, Share facts, and Stop the Spread.

ECIAAA acknowledges that available resources to help the Aging Network better serve older adults during this emergency are limited. However, we are learning more each day and will share pertinent information as received.  ECIAAA stands ready to support the Aging Network.  Please do not hesitate in contacting us at 1-800-888-4456 with your questions. 

Thank you all for your dedication as we continue to support today, while planning for tomorrow.  Please, Be Safe, and Be Well!

SCR:sr

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IMPORTANT NOTICE TO THE AGING NETWORK– COVID-19

TO:             ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS, & ECIAAA SERVICE PROVIDERS
FROM:       Susan C. Real, Executive Director
DATE:        March 12, 2020
RE:         ECIAAA COVID-19 Reaction to Action!
Illinois older adults are among the highest risk population group for becoming seriously ill from COVID-19. Locations where seniors gather such as congregate meal sites and senior centers may increase the risk of transmitting COVID-19 and increase the risk of spreading the virus. On Monday, March 9, 2020, Governor JB Pritzker declared a state of emergency based on new guidance from the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH), Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and evidence emerging across other countries and throughout the United States.

As of Wednesday, March 11, 2020. the Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA) requested all Area Agencies on Aging (AAA), and AAA-funded service providers, to immediately suspend all gathering activities placing our older adults at heightened risk including the provision of congregate meals and social activities in group settings. IDoA’s directive is a prevention, not a containment measure.

To protect older adults in east central Illinois, in collaboration with our ECIAAA-funded service providers, we have taken the following actions:

  • Suspension of meal service at congregate nutrition sites. ECIAAA-funded nutrition providers are suspending the provision of meals at congregate sites but will provide meals to congregate participants using an alternative format (i.e. as a “carry-out” or a “home-delivered meal”). This includes meals provided in a restaurant setting. It is the intention of ECIAAA and AAA-funded nutrition providers to ensure congregate meal participants receive OAA-funded congregate meals during the COVID-19 threat. NOTE: At this time, we do not anticipate any changes to traditional OAA-Home Delivered Meal service provision in PSA 05.
  • CCUs will be notified of congregate meal recipients receiving Community Care Program (CCP) services of the provision of alternative congregate meals (i.e. “carry-out meals” or “home delivered meals”).
  • Senior Centers hosting ECIAAA-funded nutrition programs are requested to support nutrition providers in their efforts to provide congregate meals using the alternative delivery method (i.e. “carry-out meals” or “home delivered meals”) to reduce potential exposure to COVID-19.
  • Senior Centers are requested to suspend all social activities in group settings in PSA 05.
  • However, Senior Centers providing ECIAAA-funded CPoE/SIS services are requested to continue providing individual services to seniors such as benefit assistance, tax preparation, and Benefit Access Application (BAA) applications without interruption.
  • Coordinated Points of Entry/Senior Information Service providers are requested to continue providing individual services to seniors such as benefit assistance, tax preparation, and Benefit Access Application (BAA) applications without interruption.
  • Long-Term Care Facilities – ECIAAA’s Regional Ombudsman Program is acting to protect our vulnerable adults living in long-term care facilities. Under the direction of Kelly Richards, IDoA State Ombudsman, ECIAAA’s Regional Ombudsman, Angie Baker, is collaborating with facility administrators to address the potential COVID-19 threat in 161 long-term facilities in east central Illinois.

Duration of Suspension? Suspension of meals provided in congregate settings and social activities in group settings goes into effect immediately and remains in effect until further notice.

Where to Find Answers and Help? Please find national, state, and local resources to help us deal with this crisis:

ECIAAA acknowledges that available resources to help the Aging Network better serve older adults during this emergency are limited. However, we are learning more each day and will share pertinent information as received. ECIAAA stands ready to support the Aging Network. Please do not hesitate in contacting us at 1-800-888-4456 with your questions.

Thank you all for your dedication as we continue to support today, while planning for tomorrow. Be Well!

SCR:sr

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

MEMORANDUM

TO:             ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS, & ECIAAA SERVICE PROVIDERS
FROM:       Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR
DATE:        February 7, 2020
RE:             Director’s Report – Older Americans Act Reauthorization
(Source:  Autumn Campbell, Senior Director, n4a Public Policy and Advocacy)  

Older Americans Act Reauthorization Moves Forward!
After nearly a year of advocacy and negotiation, House and Senate leaders released a bipartisan, bicameral bill, Supporting Older Americans Act of 2020, to reauthorize the federal Older Americans Act (OAA) for five years. This is an exciting development that reflects significant commitment from and work by local and national advocates, congressional champions in both chambers, and key House and Senate staff. We believe this final compromise bill is poised for swift passage soon after the Senate returns to legislative business following the current impeachment activity.


Some of the key provisions promoted by both the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging and the Illinois Association of Area Agencies on Aging include:

  • Reauthorizing the OAA for five years, which is the timeframe included in the House-passed Dignity in Aging Act (H.R. 4334) and two years longer than the prior reauthorization. The Senate bill initially proposed a seven-year reauthorization that was negotiated as part of the agreement over the Act’s funding formula.
  • House-passed increases in authorized funding levels: a seven percent increase is recommended for the first year, with six percent increases in each subsequent year through FY 2024.
  • Language to clarify that AAAs can, outside of the OAA, engage in private pay, integrated care and other arrangements to expand services, which is a key n4a priority and is also included in both previous bills.
  • Removing the Title III E funding cap on grand-families and older relative caregivers, another top n4a priority.
  • Establishing a research, demonstration and evaluation center for the Aging Network to improve assessment and promote advancement of the relationship between OAA programs and services and health outcomes. This final measure is a compromise between House and Senate provisions regarding research, evaluation and demonstration efforts.
  • Encouraging states to work with AAAs to address potential administrative barriers to transferring funds between nutrition programs for congregate and home-delivered meals.


Our advocacy efforts paid off!  n4a’s policy team worked successfully to prevent any unfunded mandates for AAAs. Plus, efforts to erode the local control and flexibility of AAAs were thwarted. The Administration’s recommendation to eliminate local governments' right of first refusal to serve as the AAA was not adopted. The bill does include a significant section on caregiver assessments, but does not require robust assessments in Title III E, as previously proposed.
 
Next Steps for OAA Reauthorization
 
The Supporting Older Americans Act of 2020 was introduced as a substitute amendment to the House-passed Dignity in Aging Act, which was unanimously approved by the House in September. This means that the final compromise bill maintains the House bill number, H.R. 4334, and will likely circumvent additional committee action in the Senate to move straight to floor consideration.
 
This is great news because it would significantly expedite the Senate approval process. While the exact next steps in the Senate are unclear, we do expect that moving this compromise bill is a top priority for lawmakers when they return to legislative business.
 
Following what we hope will be a speedy Senate approval, the bill would then have to go back to the House for passage before heading to the President’s desk for signature. We don’t anticipate major hurdles to House approval, but the exact path forward will become much clearer in the days ahead. N4a and I4A are relying on its grassroots advocacy to ensure that this bill gets across the finish line this winter!
 
Thank you for your efforts and please do not hesitate in contacting me by cell phone with questions at (309)533-3232.

SCR:sr

Cc: Control File

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MEMORANDUM

TO:             ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS, & ECIAAA SERVICE PROVIDERS

FROM:       Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

DATE:        December 20, 2019

RE:             Director’s Report – FY 2020 Federal Budget Update

FY 2020 Federal Funding Compromise

(Source: Autumn Campbell, Senior Director, n4a Public Policy and Advocacy)  

Older Americans Act (OAA)
During the last days before Christmas break, Congress has acted on finalizing federal funding levels for FY 2020.  Congressional appropriators included modest increases for Older Americans Act and other critical aging programs.  Please refer to the FY 2020 Appropriations Chart attached.  The committee boosted titles: 

  • III-B Home and Community-Based Supportive Services by $5 million (+1.3%) to $390 million;
  • III-C1 Congregate Meals by $15 million (+3%) to $266 million;
  • III-C2 Home-Delivered Meals by $15 million (+6%) to $266 million; and,
  • III-E National Family Caregiver Support Program by $4.75 million (+2.6%) to $186 million.


Elder Justice and Adult Protective Services

  • OAA Title VII Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program increased by $1 million (+5 %);
  • Prevention of Elder Abuse and Neglect programs at $22.7 million.
  • No increase to Elder Rights Support Activities, including the Elder Justice Initiative, at $15.8 million total, which includes $12 million for the Elder Justice Initiative and Adult Protective Services

State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)
 
          $3 million increase for the State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP), funding it at

$52.1 million, which fully restores the program to the level it was before the FY 2017 cut.

Good news for the future of SHIP - This funding level indicates that appropriators reject the Administration’s argument that SHIPs duplicate other federal resources such as 1-800-MEDICARE. However, aging advocates must continue to educate policymakers about the important role that these individualized, cost-effective, person-centered, volunteer-driven counseling services provide in every state.


SCSEP & Senior Corps
 
Good news for both the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP), administered by the Department of Labor, and Senior Corps programs (RSVP, Foster Grandparents and Senior Companion) which is administered by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS). Under the final bill, both programs would receive boosts.  

  • SCSEP - includes a $5 million ($1.2 percent) increase for SCSEP, funding the program at $405 million.
  • Senior Corps – increase of $12.9 million (6 percent) to fund Senior Corps programs at $221.5 million.  

Other Programs
 
Other critical state and community block grant programs, which supplement and support the work of the Aging Network, received either increases or level funding in the final FY 2020 funding bill.  

  • CSBG - The Community Services Block Grant was increased by $15 million to $740 million.
  • SSBG – The Social Services Block Grant was level funded at $1.7 billion.
  • LIHEAP - The Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program, which assists low-income households and families, including number of older adults, with heating and energy bills throughout the year was funded at $3.74 billion, a $50 million increase over FY 2019.

In Conclusion

We anticipate Congress will move quickly to approve the package of funding proposals before the current funding bill expires on December 20 (today).  And as always, advocacy efforts will continue in Washington D.C., as well as, locally to ensure adequate support goes to our Aging Network.  Thank you for your efforts and please do not hesitate in contacting me by cell phone with questions at (309)533-3232.

Happy Holidays!

SCR:sr

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Memorandum

TO:             ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS, & ECIAAA SERVICE PROVIDERS

FROM:       Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

DATE:        October 19, 2019

RE:          Director’s Report – U.S. House of Representatives Passes Bipartisan Bill to Reauthorize the Older Americans Act

On Monday, October 28, 2019, the Dignity in Aging Act was passed by a unanimous voice vote in the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill would reauthorize the Older Americans Act (OAA) through 2024. The federal Older Americans Act, which expired on September 30, provides vital home and community-based services to more than 550,000 older adults and caregivers in Illinois and 11 million older adults and caregivers nationally.
 
The Illinois Association of Area Agencies on Aging joins n4a CEO Sandy Markwood in “thanking the leaders of the House and the Education and Labor Committee in producing a bipartisan bill that updates and reauthorizes the critically important Older Americans Act… The OAA is also a lifeline for family caregivers, who are the backbone of our nation’s long-term services and supports system.”

As announced by n4a, we are asking the U.S. Senate to support many of the important updates passed by their House colleagues. Reauthorizing this vital Act will ensure the ongoing stability of the Older Americans Act programs and services that help millions of older adults age with dignity, health, and independence.

The House-passed Dignity in Aging Act includes most of n4a’s Older Americans Act reauthorization priorities and previously earned n4a’s endorsement. Specifically, the Dignity in Aging Act would:

  • Extend the OAA for five years, two years longer than the prior reauthorization.
  • Provide notable increases in authorized funding: a seven percent increase the first year, with six percent increases each year after—totaling a 35 percent increase over five years.
  • Include language to make clear that AAAs can engage in private pay, integrated care and other arrangements to expand services outside of the Act.
  • Provide for additional funding to support Title VI Native American aging programs, specifically for the provision of supportive services and capacity-building training.
  • Remove the Title III E cap on grandfamilies and older relative caregivers.
  • Include the creation of new research and demonstration authority at the U.S. Administration on Aging.
  • Recognize the negative effects of social isolation and loneliness and reinforce the Aging Network’s role in preventing isolation and promoting engagement among older adults.

In Conclusion
We hope the Senate will continue this bipartisan momentum and approve an OAA reauthorization measure that expands the Aging Network’s capacity to provide services to a rapidly growing population of older adults and caregivers. The home and community-based services funded through the OAA are far less costly than institutional care and ensure that older adults and caregivers can age with health and independence in their homes and communities.

Advocacy efforts will continue for final reauthorization of the Older Americans Act.  Thank you for your efforts and please do not hesitate in contacting me by cell phone with questions at (309)533-3232.

SCR:sr

Cc:       Control File

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

MEMORANDUM

TO:             ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS, & ECIAAA SERVICE PROVIDERS

FROM:       Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

DATE:        July 17, 2019

RE:             Director’s Report – Federal & State Updates

Illinois FY 2020 Budget Signed into Law.  The final funding measure includes:

  • $ 2 million increase for Home Delivered Meals – which translates to an increase of approximately $136,600 in Illinois General Funds to increase meals and support home delivered meals programs in east central Illinois.
  • $ 1 million in new funding for Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias (ADRD) programs. ECIAAA will use its allocation of $68,300 in Illinois GRF to implement the Stress-Busting Evidence-Based Program and ADRD Gap-Filling programs for older adults with dementia and caregivers providing care to them.
  • $ 1 million in new funding to implement programs to reduce Social Isolation. ECIAAA will use its Illinois GRF allocation of $68,300 to implement demonstration projects in the communities of Bloomington//Normal and Champaign/Urbana. 

Other Budget Highlights Include:

  • Funding shifts from Illinois General Revenue Funds to the Commitment to Human Services Fund to help stabilize the Aging Network by improving voucher-to-warrant time
  • $1 million, in total for Illinois, for the Senior Health Assistance Program (SHAP) to create a performance-based reimbursement system to assist SHAP sites with the costs of assisting older persons and persons with disabilities with the completion of their Benefit Access Applications (BAA)
  • An increase of $24 million to Care Coordination Units to assist participants complete Medicaid applications (PA 100-587)

FY 2020 Grant Extensions Approval Process.  The Planning & Program Department is currently reviewing extension applications from ECIAAA-funded service providers.  The ECIAAA Programs & Services Committee and Corporate Board will act on FY 2020 funding extensions in August 2019.  FY 2020 begins October 1, 2019.

2020 Census Outreach Efforts.  $29 million has been appropriated from the Illinois General Revenue Fund to the Illinois Department of Human Services for grants to community providers and local governments for the purposes of encouraging full participation in the 2020 federal decennial census. Target areas include, but are not limited to, those communities estimated by the United States Census Bureau to have been undercounted during the 2010 Census.   The 2020 census will begin April 2020 and will be the first census to rely heavily on online responses. It is crucial that we do everything possible to obtain an accurate count.
Please note:  The Illinois Association of Area Agencies on Aging (I4A) is currently working with the Illinois Department on Aging to apply for 2020 Census Outreach Funding.  PSA 05 will receive a portion of this special outreach funding.  We will keep you posted!

Older Americans Act (OAA) Reauthorization
The Older Americans Act authorization will expire the end of FY 2019.  The Senate Help & Aging Committees have drafted the Modernization of the Older Americans Act Amendments. Certain provisions in the proposed language are highlighted below:

National Resource Center for Women and Retirement.  Codifies the National Resource Center for Women and Retirement.  The Center provides basic financial management, retirement planning and other education tools that promote financial literacy and help identify and prevent fraud and elder exploitation for women. 

Assistive Technology.  Modernizes the Older Americans Act to ensure programs consider and coordinate with State assistive technology programs authorized by the Assistive Technology Act of 1998.

Evidence-Based Program Adaption.  Requires the Assistant Secretary for Aging to provide technical assistance on how to deliver evidence-based disease prevention and health promotion programs for different populations in a variety of different settings, such as in local communities and rural areas.

Modernizing the Interagency Coordination Committee on Healthy Aging and Age-Friendly Communities.  Requires the development of a national set of recommendations to promote age-friendly communities. 

Report on Social Isolation.  Requires the Assistant Secretary for Aging to review existing programs under the Older Americans Act to determine if and how such programs are adequately addressing greatest social need and make recommendations on ways to improve how programs address negative impacts associated with social isolation for older individuals.  NOTE:  I4A and n4a are advocating that the report be expanded to include all OAA programs – not just nutrition services.

Senior Legal Hotlines.  Recognizes the practice of statewide senior legal hotlines for purposes of supporting and providing legal assistance for older individuals.

Nutrition Services Study.  Institutes a review of existing policies and practices for measuring the number of meals provided and the number of meals in demand.  Essentially, this study is intended to measure unmet needs.  Note:  I4A and n4A are advocating that the study be expanded to include all OAA programs – not just nutrition services.

Improvements to Nutrition Programs.  Makes improvements to nutrition programs.  Encourages states to work with area agencies on aging to reduce the administrative burden for transferring funds between nutrition programs for congregate and home delivered meals.  Note:  I4A and n4A opposes language that limits the transfer authority of area agencies on aging.  We are advocating to preserve our current transfer authority of 40%.

Younger Onset Alzheimer’s Disease.  Recognizes and clarifies existing authority to provider services to those with Alzheimer’s disease at any age.

National Family Caregiver Support Program.  Makes improvements to the National Family Caregiver Support program.  Addresses the development of a ‘caregiver assessment’ and removes the 10% cap on Title III-E funds for grand-families (aka grandparents/relatives raising grandchildren/children).

Prevention of Elder Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation.  Updates elder justice activities to include community outreach and education as part of the multidisciplinary efforts.  Ensures innovative projects capture programs and materials for developing partnerships in communities.

Best Practices for Home and Community-Based Ombudsmen.  Updates the best practices for home and community-based ombudsmen.

In Conclusion…
Advocacy efforts will continue to obtain 2020 Census Outreach funding and to reauthorize the Older Americans Act.  Thank you for your efforts and please do not hesitate in contacting me by cell phone with questions at (309)533-3232.

SCR:sr

Cc:       Control File
___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

MEMORANDUM

TO: ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS, & ECIAAA SERVICE PROVIDERS

FROM: Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

DATE: March 21, 2019

RE: Director’s Report – Proposed Illinois 2020 Budget & OAA Reauthorization

Proposed Illinois 2020 Budget
Please find the following highlights contained in Governor Pritzker’s introduced 2020 budget for the Illinois Department on Aging:

  • Funding shifts from Illinois General Revenue Funds to the Commitment to Human Services Fund to help stabilize the Aging Network by improving voucher-to-warrant time
  • $2 million for Home Delivered Meals
    Maintain the current meal levels

    Maintain persons served in the program
    Address current waiting lists
  • $2 million for Planning and Service Grants to Area Agencies on Aging
    $1 million to address Alzheimer’s Disease & Related Dementia

    $1 million to address social isolation issues with older adults
  • $1 million for the Senior Health Assistance Program (SHAP) to create a performance-based reimbursement system to assist SHAP sites with the costs of assisting older persons and persons with disabilities with the completion of their Benefit Access Applications (BAA)
  • An increase of $24 million to Care Coordination Units to assist participants complete Medicaid applications (PA 100-587)
  • Maintains Adult Protective Services (APS) at current levels
  • Maintains the Long-Term Care Ombudsman program at current levels

Older Americans Act (OAA) Reauthorization
The Older Americans Act authorization will expire the end of FY 2019. The National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a) released its recommendations for the reauthorization (source: March 2019 n4a Policy Brief). The Older Americans Act serves as the foundation for the future of aging services. We will work with lawmakers in pursuing a bipartisan, thoughtful, determined approach to reauthorization that promotes four core principles of the OAA:

  1. Meet the consumers where they are by protecting local focus and flexibility. OAA services enable older adults to age in place. OAA services help older caregivers.
  2. Meet growing needs by increasing investments. OAA funding constitutes less than 1/3 of 1% of federal discretionary funding. To meet the demand, an increase of 23%($2.5 billion) is needed to restore the service capacity of the Aging Network. Additional funding would reduce waiting lists and expand reach.
  3. Foster innovations in service delivery. New resources are needed to engage rural, isolated seniors. OAA provides person-centered opportunities to prevent social isolation.
  4. Ease administrative barriers to increase access to services. Area Agencies on Aging are charged with achieving and maintaining fiscal stewardship and efficiency, additional flexibilities are needed to allow Area Agencies on Aging to reduce administrative burdens to better address the needs in their local service areas.

To review the OAA recommendations in more detail, the n4a March 2019 Policy Brief can be found on ECIAAA’s website at www.eciaaa.org.

Please do not hesitate in contacting me by cell phone with questions at (309)533-3232.

SCR:sr

Cc: Control File

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

MEMORANDUM

TO: ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS, & ECIAAA SERVICE PROVIDERS

FROM: Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

DATE: December 27, 2018

RE: Director’s Report – Federal Government Shutdown Explained

With the flurry of media reports regarding the partial federal government shutdown effective December 22, 2018, we wanted to clarify the status of the Older Americans Act (OAA) budget for FY 2019.

First and foremost, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has been funded through September 30, 2019. The HHS appropriation bill for FY 2019 was passed by Congress and signed by the President last August. The Older Americans Act funding flows through the Administration for Community Living, which is an operating division of HHS. The partial federal government shutdown does not affect OAA programs for older adults, such as nutrition services, information and assistance, SHIP, programs for caregivers and grandparents raising grandchildren, and the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program. In addition, benefit programs such as Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid are not affected by the partial shutdown.

Though approximately 75% of the government has been funded through the end of FY 2019, these remaining government departments are directly affected by the partial shutdown:

  • U.S. Department of State
  • U.S. Department of Interior
  • U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • U.S. Department of Justice
  • U.S. Department of Treasury
  • U.S. Department of Transportation
  • U.S. Department of Commerce
  • U. S. Department of Homeland Security

Due to “essential personnel” requirements, over 420,000 federal employees working for certain departments – such as Homeland Security and Transportation – will continue to work without pay during the partial shutdown. Another 380,000 federal workers will be furloughed.
It is hoped a final spending package for FY 2019 can be negotiated by the Administration and Congress by the New Year’s Holiday.
In conclusion, FY 2019 funding is secure for OAA programs serving older adults in East Central Illinois including Area Agency on Aging operations, even with all the uncertainty in Washington D.C. Please contact me with any questions. Thank you.

SCR:sr
Cc: Control File

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MEMORANDUM

TO: ECIAAA CORPORATE BOARD, ADVISORY COUNCIL MEMBERS & ECIAAA SERVICE PROVIDERS
FROM: Susan C. Real, Executive Director SCR

DATE: November 28, 2018

RE: ECIAAA Announces Final Grant Awards for FY 2019

The East Central Illinois Area Agency on Aging (ECIAAA) announces the Older Americans Act (OAA) and Illinois General Revenue Fund (GRF) awards for FY 2019. All grant awards are effective October 1, 2018, with the exception of Senior Information Services (SIS)/Coordinated Point of Entry (CPoE) for Champaign County which became effective November 1, 2018. Funding supports programs that help over 21,000 vulnerable older adults, family caregivers, individuals with disabilities and grandparents raising grandchildren in East Central Illinois. A total of $5,007,861 in OAA/GRF funding was awarded to the following community based organizations in the counties of Champaign, Clark, Coles, Cumberland, DeWitt, Douglas, Edgar, Ford, Iroquois, Livingston, McLean, Macon, Moultrie, Piatt, Shelby and Vermilion.

PEACE MEAL NUTRITION PROGRAM - $2,179,213 for Congregate and Home Delivered Meals
Service Area: Counties of Champaign, Clark, Coles, Cumberland, DeWitt, Douglas, Edgar, Ford, Iroquois, Livingston, McLean, Moultrie, Piatt, and Shelby

CRIS HEALTHY-AGING CENTER - $879,695 for the following services by county:
Senior Information Services/Options Counseling – Champaign & Vermilion
Congregate & Home Delivered Meals – Vermilion
Evidence Based/Healthy Aging Programs – Vermilion
Caregiver Advisor for Family Caregivers & Grandparents Raising Grandchildren - Champaign & Vermilion
Respite for Family Caregivers – Vermilion
Adult Protective Services Multidisciplinary & Training Support – Vermilion

DECATUR MACON COUNTY OPPORTUNITIES CORPORATION (DMCOC) - $159,479 for Congregate Meals in Macon County

STARTING POINT/MACON COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT - $173,210 for the following services:
Senior Information Services/Options Counseling – Macon
Evidence Based/Healthy Aging Programs – Macon
Caregiver Advisor for Family Caregivers & Grandparents Raising Grandchildren – Macon
Respite for Family Caregivers – Macon

LIVINGSTON COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT - $725 for Respite Services for Caregivers

CARE HORIZON – $7,782 for the following services by county:
Adult Protective Services Multidisciplinary Team/Training – Clark, Coles, Cumberland, Douglas, Edgar & Moultrie
Respite for Family Caregivers – Champaign, Coles, DeWitt, Douglas, Edgar & Piatt

COMMUNITY CARE SYSTEMS, INC - $403,396 for the following services by county:
Senior Information Services/Options Counseling – DeWitt, Livingston, McLean & Shelby
Gerontological Counseling – McLean & Livingston
Evidence Based/Healthy Aging Programs – McLean, Livingston & DeWitt
Caregiver Advisor for Family Caregivers & Grandparents Raising Grandchildren – Clark, Cumberland, DeWitt, Livingston, & McLean
Respite for Family Caregivers – Clark, Cumberland, McLean, Moultrie & Shelby

CATHOLIC CHARITIES MEALS ON WHEELS - $458,434 for the following services by county:
Home Delivered Meals – Macon
Evidence Based/Matter of Balance – Macon

FAMILY SERVICE - $61,870 for the following services by county:
Gerontological Counseling – Champaign
Evidence Based/Healthy Aging Programs – Champaign
Caregiver Advisor for Family Caregivers & Grandparents Raising Grandchildren – Piatt
Adult Protective Services Multidisciplinary Team/Training – Champaign & Piatt

CHELP - $3,212 for the following services by county:
Adult Protective Services Multidisciplinary Team/Training Support for Macon & DeWitt

VOLUNTEER SERVICE OF IROUOIS COUNTY - $85,704 for the following services by county:
Senior Information Services/Options Counseling – Iroquois
Caregiver Advisor for Family Caregivers & Grandparents Raising Grandchildren – Iroquois

LIFE CENTER - $98,718 for the following services by county:
Senior Information Services/Options Counseling – Clark & Cumberland
Evidence Based/Matter of Balance – Clark & Cumberland

CHESTER P. SUTTON COMMUNITY CENTER OF EDGAR COUNTY - $68,821 for the following services by county:
Senior Information Services/Options Counseling - Edgar
Caregiver Advisor for Family Caregivers & Grandparents Raising Grandchildren - Edgar

PATH - $3,212 for the following services by county:
Adult Protective Services Multidisciplinary Team/Training Support for McLean and Livingston

PIATT COUNTY SERVICES FOR SENIORS - $43,950 for the following services by county:
Senior Information Services/Options Counseling – Piatt

COLES COUNTY COUNCIL ON AGING - $100,637 for the following services by county:
Senior Information Services/Options Counseling – Coles
Caregiver Advisor for Family Caregivers & Grandparents Raising Grandchildren – Coles

MID-ILLINOIS SERVICES FOR SENIORS - $140,858 for the following services by county:
Senior Information Services/Options Counseling – Douglas & Moultrie
Caregiver Advisor Services for Family Caregivers & Grandparents Raising Grandchildren – Douglas, Moultrie & Shelby

LAND OF LINCOLN LEGAL ASSISTANCE FOUNDATION - $59,664 for Legal Services
Service Area: Counties of Champaign, Clark, Coles, Cumberland, DeWitt, Douglas, Edgar, Ford, Macon, Moultrie, Shelby and Vermilion

PRAIRIE STATE LEGAL SERVICES - $17,962 for Legal Services
Service Area: Counties of Iroquois, Livingston and McLean

FORD COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT - $57,438 for the following services by county:
Senior Information Services/Options Counseling – Ford
Caregiver Advisor for Family Caregivers & Grandparents Raising Grandchildren – Ford
Respite for Caregivers – Ford
Adult Protective Services Multidisciplinary Team/Training Support – Ford

IROQUOIS COUNTY HEALTH DEPARTMENT - $3,881 for the following service by county:
Respite for Caregivers – Iroquois
Adult Protective Services Multidisciplinary Team/Training Support – Iroquois

For more information please contact Susan C. Real, Executive Director, at 309-533-3232 or email at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Get in touch

Location

ECIAAA
1003 Maple Hill Road
Bloomington, IL 61705-9327

Contact

Email: aginginfo@eciaaa.org
Phone: 309-829-2065
Fax: 309-829-6021

Opening hours

Mon-Fri: 8:00 am to 4:00 pm
Sat-Sun: CLOSED

Seniors

Seniors may call toll free:
Phone: 1-800-888-4456