Consumers > Resources for families

FAMILY RESOURCES

Care Conversations.org
Provides resources for starting the conversation, planning, preparing, and paying for long term care. The resources provide information and insight that you'll need to decide what level of care - nursing facility, assisted living program, residential care facility or other types of long term care - best fits your or your loved one's needs. The website will help you find the right care where you need it.

The article, Talk openly by starting a care conversation with aging parents, discusses how to start the difficult care conversation, how to plan and prepare for care and ways to ease the transition for family members. Bob Van Dyk, President and CEO of Van Dyk Health Care, outlines important things families should and should not do when discussing long term and post-acute care with aging family members.
 

Health Care Provider Compare website
Medicare Providers Compare This website helps Americans make informed choices about nursing homes, home health agencies, hospitals and physicians, and were redesigned to have more information available to the public. The websites, offered by the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), gives consumers access to information on how well Medicare providers of health care services are performing on important quality measures.

Site navigation includes easy-to-use maps for pinpointing facilities. Glossaries and web resources make the information easier to understand.

Market Survey of Long-Term Care Costs
The 2012 MetLife Market Survey of Nursing Home, Assisted Living, Adult Day Services, and Home Care Costs provides national, statewide, and area specific (based on population), average daily rates for private and semi-private rooms in a nursing home, monthly base rates in assisted living communities, hourly rates for home health aide and homemaker services, and daily rates for adult day services as well as the range of rates in each area surveyed.

It also provides a helpful list of resources, including checklists, that can help consumers in evaluating and choosing the appropriate long term care option.


GOVERNMENT RESOURCES

National Clearinghouse for Long Term Care Information
The National Clearinghouse of Long Term Care Information website provides comprehensive information about long term care planning, services and financing options, along with tools to help people begin the planning process.

Administration on Aging: Older Americans Act resources
The Administration on Aging offers numerous services to older persons through programs funded under the Older Americans Act. This webpage provides a list of links to programs such as home-delivered meals programs or nutrition services in congregate settings, or transportation, adult day care, legal assistance or health promotion programs.  

Iowa Senior Health Insurance Information Program
A major concern of many seniors and their families is how to cover the cost of long-term care and whether long-term care insurance is a smart investment. This program and website (from the Iowa Insurance Division) explains the plans that are available and whether getting coverage is the right call for you.




SPECIAL NEEDS RESOURCES

Alzheimer's and Dementia resources
The Long Term Care Community Coalition website is designed especially for families and individuals affected by Alzheimer's Disease and other dementias. It was developed with support from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and helps people understand important issues surrounding the use of antipsychotic medications in people with dementia.

For more information, see the resources and information on the Nursing Home 411 website and the new brochure, Get the Facts about Antipsychotic Drugs and Dementia Care.
 

Alzheimer’s Association
The Alzheimer’s Association is dedicated to finding prevention methods, treatments and an eventual cure for Alzheimer’s. They provide services to families and professionals, including information and referral, support groups, care consultation, education and safety services. 


AGING RESOURCES

Fall prevention tips
The coming of winter heralds the coming of fracture season for the elderly, due to falls triggered by a combination of colder weather and shorter, darker days, say researchers. Fall prevention tips can be found at the following websites: 
National Safety Council
National Council on Aging
National Institute on Aging


Consumer Protection
The Private Right of Action consumer protection law went into effect on July 1, 2009. Iowa joined 49 other states in creating a private remedy for consumer fraud. The law is a very important tool for consumers who have been cheated by consumer fraud or deception. For more information see the Consumer Advisor Bulletin from the Iowa Attorney General’s Office.

OIG’s website consumer alert section
Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General (OIG) website has a Consumer Alerts section where it posts issues fraud alerts pertinenting to long term care as well as other areas of concern. The current alerts are for people with diabetes and for medical ID theft/fraud. Visit the Consumer Alerts section and be sure to share it with other - residents/tenants and their family members.

Easter Seals seeks equipment donations
Providers, seniors or their family members who have durable medical equipment that is no longer needed, it can be donated to Easter Seals Iowa. The Easter Seals Iowa Assistive Technology Center provides a Durable Medical Equipment Loan Program that serves the entire state of Iowa and operates solely from donations of used medical equipment.

Items of highest need include:
• Lift chairs
• Manual wheelchairs
• Shower transfer benches
• Shower benches

All donations are tax deductible. To arrange for pick up or delivery of equipment, contact Easter Seals Iowa at 515.309.2395. Print the Easter Seals flier to post in facilities or share with family members.


ADVOCACY

AHCA NCAL Advocacy Center
Be an advocate for long term care. You can make a big difference in just 5 minutes. That's all it will take to learn the issues and send a letter to your elected officials. The actions of our government have an enormous impact so please educate yourself and take action. Visit the AHCA NCAL Advocacy Center to learn more about the issues and how you can help!