All Posts By

Vanessa Barrington

Times are Changing: Needs of Low-Income Seniors in the Spotlight

Recently there has been a groundswell of media, academic, and pundit attention on the issue of senior poverty.

From the New York Times, the The Atlantic, to NPR, important and influential sources are finally acknowledging the difficult reality that too many of the older adults in our families and communities are facing. At Justice in Aging we are working with partners to leverage this attention to push for policy changes that can help these seniors. Read More

New Health Programs for Elderly Poor Make Rocky Start

By | IN THE NEWS, Uncategorized

Wall Street Journal: New Health Programs for Elderly Poor Make Rocky Start (12/23/2015)  This article focuses on the low enrollment numbers in states that have launched programs to coordinate the care of people who are eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid through managed care plans (dual eligibles). Justice in Aging Attorney Amber Cutler comments on California’s Coordinated Care Initiative, noting that lawmakers need to give the pilot a chance to work before abandoning it.

The Medicare Open Enrollment Period and Low-Income Individuals

By | FACT SHEET, Health Care, Medicare

The annual Medicare Open Enrollment Period runs October 15 through December 7 2015. Advocates serving low-income individuals-even if you do not normally work on Medicare issues-to help Medicare-eligible can clients understand what they need to do. Our Fact Sheet for Advocates provides five basic tips for questions to raise when talking with clients. We also have a Fact Sheet for Consumers that you can give to your clients or use for outreach.

Hipaa’s Use as Code of Silence Often Misinterprets the Law


New York Times: Hipaa’s Use as Code of Silence Often Misinterprets the Law  (7/17/2015) Justice in Aging Attorney Eric Carlson serves as legal expert for this article by Paula Span about the ways providers misuse Hipaa (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act). In the article, he’s quoted as saying, “Providers may be disinclined to give out information anyway, and this provides an easy rationale, but Hipaa is more common sense than people give it credit for.”

LGBT Older Adults Still Face Discrimination

By | BLOG, Health Disparities, HOMEPAGE

Imagine being out and proud all of your adult life and then moving into a long-term care facility and having to go back into the closet because you don’t feel safe coming out to staff and other residents. Imagine being dismissed and disrespected when you advocate strongly for the rights of your same-sex companion while she’s being cared for in a nursing home. Imagine feeling like you have to endure homophobic comments from a personal care worker assigned to you because you’re afraid of how he’ll treat you if you speak up.

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Thank you Supreme Court Justices for Upholding the Affordable Care Act

By | Affordable Care Act, BLOG

We are pleased that the Supreme Court decided to protect the current and future health insurance of millions of Americans in today’s King v. Burwell decision. Three years after the Supreme Court upheld the Affordable Care Act as the law of the land, we are grateful the court once again dismissed this latest ill-advised attempt to undermine the law, by protecting health coverage for 6.4 million enrollees, who will retain access to tax credit subsidies that make coverage possible.

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Orange is the New Black Misses the Point on SSI

By | BLOG, Uncategorized
Here at Justice in Aging, our weekend Orange is the New Black binges sometimes become the subject of Monday morning water cooler conversations. The show can be spot-on in addressing a multitude of issues through the lens of a women’s prison, including the economic disparities that women face–especially women of color–that lead to increased incarceration; its sensitive treatment of transgender issues through the character, Sophia, played by Laverne Cox; and its unflinching look at what it’s like to be a poor, aging woman in America.

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Advocating for Improved Consumer Protections in Managed Long-Term Services and Supports


For the past two years, Justice in Aging has provided ongoing assistance to advocates in Florida, Kansas and New Jersey as their states have implemented Medicaid managed care for long-term services and supports (LTSS). This issue brief provides short summaries of the managed care programs in each of those states, and then discusses four specific advocacy
issues that have arisen in the states, along with strategies to address those issues. These issues give a flavor of the various problems that can confront consumers and their advocates in a managed care environment.

Read the report.

WEBINAR: How New CMS Person-Centered Care Planning Rules Apply to Medicaid Delivered LTSS

By | Alerts, Health Care, WEBINAR
When: Wednesday, April 29, 2015 2:00-3:00 PM EDT
Person-centered planning is now almost universally understood as a necessary component of an effective delivery system for long-term services and supports.  Done well, person-centered planning can ensure greater independence and a better quality of life for consumers receiving LTSS.  Ideally, consumers take an active, leading role in the planning process, armed with the information they need to make informed choices about services and supports that comport with their needs, as well as their preferences, goals, and desired outcomes.  But there is still a lack of clarity about what exactly person-centered planning is and how to make sure it is delivered.

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