Print Page  |  Sign In  |  Register
LeadingAge NC News
Blog Home All Blogs
Search all posts for:   


View all (191) posts »

Membership Update

Posted By Jennifer Gill, Friday, June 1, 2018

June 1, 2018

Click on the section you would like to view.
Advocacy & Policy
Strategic Thinking
Professional Development
News & Notes
Value First

Advocacy & Policy

General Assembly Update
The NCGA is set to pass the short session budget bill this week in record breaking time. Using a procedure seldom seen in budget work, the budget bill language was dropped into a gutted conference report allowing the bill to move quickly through the chambers. This morning (Friday) the House of Representatives will convene for the final budget bill vote and the bill will be sent to the Governor for an expected veto.

The main purpose of the NCGA Short Session is to make necessary changes to the 2-year budget passed in 2017. The adjusted spending brings the total budget to $23.917 billion, an almost 4% increase over the plan approved in 2017.


  • Adds $60 million for Hurricane Matthew recovery
  • Adds $161 million to the state's "rainy day fund" for future emergencies, bringing that fund up to about $2 billion total.
  • An average 6.5 percent pay raise for teachers
  • Offers a 2 percent permanent salary increase for most state employees and a one-time cost-of-living supplement for retirees.
  • Directs $60 million from the Medicaid Transformation Reserve to be used for start-up costs related to Medicaid Reform’s program design.


  • $27 million to fill a Medicaid rebase gap. This is expected to be fixed when the 2019-2020 NCGA convenes in January.

You can access the budget bill here:

Prospective Payment System Proposed Rule
In late April of this year, CMS issued the FY 2019 Skilled Nursing Facility Prospective Payment System proposed rule. The rule also includes proposals related to the SNF Value-Based Purchasing program and the SNF Quality Reporting program. LeadingAge national will be sending comments to CMS and is interested in your feedback on the proposed rule. In order for them to incorporate your thoughts into their comments, please respond by June 13.
CLICK HEREfor an explanation of the proposed rule and information about how to forward your comments to LeadingAge national on this critical issue.

Medicare Observation Days Legislation
LeadingAge national is actively supporting H.R. 1421 and S. 568, the Improving Access to Medicare Coverage Act. The legislation would resolve the observation days issue by requiring all time Medicare beneficiaries spend in a hospital to count toward the three-day stay requirement for coverage of any subsequent post-acute care. We urge you to contact your Member of Congress and Senator and ask that they cosponsor these bills.

Note re: Glucometer Use from Cindy Deporter at DHSR
A heads-up from Cindy Deporter, State Agency Director and Assistant Section Chief (Acute Home Care) for the North Carolina Division of Health Service Regulation: "I wanted to share a recent trend that we are seeing with Glucometers in Nursing Homes. The problem seems to be that facilities have glucometers that are supposed to be used only for a single resident, but these glucometers are being shared with many residents. Or we are seeing glucometers that are a community glucometer and are not being cleaned and disinfected correctly. Neither one of these cases the glucometers are not being stored properly. We are not quite sure why this has become an issue again but we did recently cite this at a Jeopardy Level. So please review your policy and procedures. Please go to the UNC SPICE site or the CDC site and review the proper protocol for cleaning and disinfecting and storing glucometers. The recommendation from the indicated groups is that glucometers should not be shared."

North Carolina Coalition on Aging Releases Legislative Priorities
The North Carolina Coalition on Aging has released their 2018 Fact Sheet on Legislative Priorities. LeadingAge North Carolina is one of a number of organizations statewide that are members of the Coalition.

Make Plans NOW to Attend Aging Policy Listening Session in Your Area
The North Carolina Division of Aging and Adult Services has added two additional Aging Policy Listening Sessions for the 2019-2023 Aging Services Plan. These Listening Sessions, which are co-hosted by the NC Association of Area Agencies on Aging, will help identify the needs of the state’s older citizens, disabled adults, and their caregivers. As noted, the information gathered will also inform North Carolina’s 2019-2023 Aging Services Plan and will likely guide policy work for the Division, the Department of Health and Human Services, and other agencies of state government in the next several years.
The dates and locations of the listening sessions are as follows:

June 19, 2018
Pitt County Community Schools and Recreation Building
4561 County Home Road
Greenville, NC 27858
10 a.m. - 12 p.m.

June 27, 2018
Centralina Council of Governments
9815 David Taylor Drive
Suite 100
Charlotte, NC 28262
10 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Strategic Thinking


View Responses to Member Question re: Employee Child Care
What kind of child care, if any, do your colleagues across the state provide? Be sure to click here to download an Excel spreadsheet with responses to this member question. Thanks to everyone who helps sustain this service by taking time to respond!

Unseen Face of the Opioid Epidemic: Drug Abuse Among the Elderly Grows
May 25, 2018, The Washington Post

According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, from 2002-2014 opioid abuse declined in younger groups aged 18-25, but the epidemic almost doubled among Americans over age 50. This is of particular concern given the drugs' addictive properties and the fact that, "taking opioids can lead to falls, falls can lead to pain, pain can lead to opioids and opioids can be abused. On top of that, doctors might not even realize the source of an elderly patient’s problem. Regrettably, health-care providers sometimes miss substance abuse among older adults, as the symptoms can be similar to depression or dementia.” Please take a moment to read this important article that may help residents in your community. In addition, you may click here to read the most recent edition of the North Carolina Medical Journal, which is focused entirely on the opioid epidemic.

What Not to Say to an Isolated Older Adult
April 16, 2018, nextavenue

Well-meaning folks sometimes say things that unintentionally worsen the pain of isolation for older adults. As staff members who are regularly in contact with residents who may feel isolated (even in our communities), this article might help provide guidance on what to say and what to avoid saying.

Hearing Aids Tied to Less Hospitalization for Older U.S. Adults
May 9, 2018, Business Insider

While the study needs further validation, this article highlights the results of research that seem to indicate that hearing aids help patients communicate with their doctors and to have a more active lifestyle, which might prevent hospitalization. Further, the lack of hearing aids seemed to correlate with lower patient satisfaction, less compliance with prescribed medications and recommended treatments, more utilization of health services and higher medical costs. All of this information seems to underscore the importance of access to hearing aids and audiologists in adult care settings.

Will We Still be Relevant 'When We're 64'?
May 15, 2018, The Washington Post

This article underscores the new public health focus on combating isolation and loneliness, in this case in older adults. Several resources and ideas are offered which makes this a good article to share with residents or prospective residents of your community, as well as an educational resource for staff.

Professional Development

Spring Conference Thank You

Thank you to everyone who attended our 2018 Spring Conference and Trade Show in Asheville. We had a great turn out and The Omni Grove Park Inn did a wonderful job hosting us. Special thanks to all of our exhibitors who helped to make our Leadership Academy service project a success. Through your support we were able to deliver more than 3,000 canned and nonperishable food items to the Council on Aging of Buncombe County. The gift may be more important than ever as indicated in this NC Health News article about older adults facing hunger in North Carolina.

And please be sure to save the date for the 2019 Spring Conference and Trade Show from May 6-9, 2019 in Myrtle Beach, SC. NOTE: These dates are a week earlier than usual!

In 10 days!

The Times They Are A-Changin':
Navigating the paradigm shift in third party reimbursement

Monday, June 11
Salemtowne, Winston-Salem
Presented by Functional Pathways

This workshop is for you - administrators, DONs, CFOs, controllers, and other interested long-term care provider professionals! Join us over lunch and discuss how to strategize for your community around the paradigm shift in third party reimbursement from Medicare Advantage programs, bundled payment initiatives, accountable care organizations and proposed PPS reform. Download flyer.  Register now.

Next Month!

Finance & Strategy Symposium
with LeadingAge Virginia
July 26, 2018
Springmoor in Raleigh
7.0 CPE 6.0 NHA

CFOs, CEOs, Controllers, and other interested members, registration is now open for the Finance and Strategy Symposium with LeadingAge Virginia. Be sure to arrive in time for dinner the night before. Topics will include:

  • State of Aging Services
  • Use of data and analytics to improve management decisions
  • Ramifications of new tax law
  • Common coverage gaps in professional liability
  • Why HR and Finance should partner to reduce labor costs

Register here.
Download brochure here.

Reserve your seat for August!
Management Leadership Series

August 15, 2018
WhiteStone in Greensboro
Facilitated by Rick Schlentz of EXTRA!Ordinary, Inc.

Members: $125
Non-members: $175
4.0 NHA CEUs

Department directors, team leaders, supervisors, and mid managers - would you like a fresh perspective and new ideas about how to engage your team? Plan to join us and learn more about what it takes to create an effective team in this last session of the series. You are welcome to register even if you did not attend the first session. Register online. Download brochure.


Workforce Summit
August 22, 2018
Location: TBD

Topics will include:

  • Student internship programs
  • Respecting and embracing differences among staff
  • Workplace violence prevention
  • Best practices of a community that recently faced an active threat

2018 Event and Education Calendar

Please click here to view and print LeadingAge North Carolina's 2018 Event and Education Calendar for yourself and your staff.  Even after Spring Conference we continue to offer special events where you and your staff may learn, get inspired, and refresh yourself. We look forward to seeing you!

Advance Care Planning Workshops in June

The NC Partnership for Compassionate Care provides tools for the public to talk about their wishes with family, friends and health care providers, and to execute written advance directives (Health Care Power of Attorney and living will) in accordance with North Carolina state laws. For a list of Advance Care Planning Workshops across North Carolina this month, please click here. For information on becoming a facilitator for advance care planning workshops, please click here.

News and Notes

Workplace Diversity and Inclusion Conference
June 12, 2018
Sheraton Imperial Hotel & Convention Center

At press time, only 25 tickets remained! Please register to join Tom and Jennifer at the NC Chamber's 2nd annual 2018 Workplace Diversity & Inclusion Conference June 12 in Durham. LeadingAge NC members register at the non-member rate and enter the discount code LA2018 when you reach the payment screen. Click here to register.

FREE Advance Care Planning Facilitator Training
June 8, 2018

Land of Sky Regional Council
Asheville, NC

This one-day class is intended for those who would like to be able to assist individuals in completing their healthcare advance directives. Topics will include healthcare powers of attorney, living wills, and how to facilitate an effective advance care planning conversation. For details or to register please contact Joseph Jones at 828-348-2839.

North Carolina Medical Journal May-June 2018
The latest issue of the North Carolina Medical Journal highlights the opioid epidemic and features an article entitled, "Emergency Providers' Opioid Prescribing Behaviors Among Medicare Part D Beneficiaries in North Carolina." LeadingAge North Carolina supports the Journal as a cosponsor, which is a publication of the North Carolina Institute of Medicine. Read the issue here.

And be sure to check out the article on opioid use among older adults in the Strategic Thinking section by clicking here.

Surprising Facts on Older Adult Suicide
More than 8,200 older adults committed suicide in 2016, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Among men, those over age 65 are the likeliest to take their lives, and three-quarters of them use a gun. For more resources on this issue, please click here. Thank you to Ted Natt of St. Joseph of the Pines and Rebecca Sharp-Cassanego of Vaya Health for sharing their notes from Session 6A at Spring Conference this year entitled, "Older Adult Suicide: Recognition, Prevention and Support."

Newly-Released LeadingAge Member Resources

  • The Regulatory Round Up: This suite of three products is designed to provide LeadingAge members with valuable information about federal regulatory initiatives and developments;
  • The 2030 Aging Services Scenario Toolkit: This strategic planning toolkit explores the future need for and delivery of aging services in the context of expectable, challenging, and visionary futures. The toolkit includes a report and video presentation detailing the scenarios, and a discussion guide and PowerPoint presentation to use in your internal discussions;
  • LeadingAge Magazine: The magazine’s March/April issue examines how LeadingAge members are putting their best foot forward by learning about the changing landscape they face, examining how they communicate with their communities, asking how well their services correspond with what consumers want, and adapting to better serve older adults;
  • Social Connectedness and Engagement Technology Online Selection Tool: The Center for Aging Services Technologies (CAST) released an updated version of this tool in March; and
  • Issue Brief for Affordable, Service-Enriched Senior Housing: The issue brief requests $600 million in new Section 202 construction funding, increased funding for service coordinators and increased funding for Older Americans Act programs.

A group purchasing organization of LeadingAge and its State Affiliates.


Janitorial and Housekeeping Supplies

How much does your community spend on janitorial and housekeeping supplies?  Do you know if you are getting the best prices?
A cost study is an excellent management tool for determining if you are getting competitive pricing for what you purchase. From paper towels to cleaning chemicals, LeadingAge’s group purchasing organization, Value First, can compare what you are currently paying to pricing available through the GPO.  Your community’s janitorial supplies distributor may already be affiliated with Value First.  To do a cost study, you provide the list of items you want to compare.  Value First does the analysis.

Does your community use a different group purchasing organization for janitorial supplies?

Even if you are purchasing through a group purchasing organization other than Value First, Value First can do a cost study for you.  The primary goal is to work with LeadingAge members to make sure they are getting the best pricing—with Value First or through other sources. 

Not sure if you want to use Value First for housekeeping supplies?

The choice is yours.  You can continue with your current arrangement. Or, if the cost study results indicate potential savings, you can consider purchasing through Value First.  This is your GPO!

How do you request a cost study for your community?

Contact Value First representative Vanessa Ceasar at Call (404) 421-3956 or click here to submit your request

Value First is a group purchasing organization owned by LeadingAge national and twenty five state associations, including LeadingAge North Carolina.  Value First is designed to leverage the buying power of thousands of senior service providers across the country to get the best pricing on a comprehensive array of products and services.


This post has not been tagged.

Share |
Permalink | Comments (0)
Sign In


PDPM: Effective Systems and Coding of Section GG

Phase 3: Implementing an effective SNF Compliance & Ethics Program

SNF Quali Reporting (QRP) and SNF Value Based Purchasing (VBP) Programs

PDPM: Developing ICD.10 Expertise for Effective Coding of Clinical Categories & Non-Therapy

Phase 3: Implementing Successful Staff Training & Competency Programs

LeadingAge NC News
Featured Members