AARP Foundation Sues CA Nursing Facility Chain for Alleged ‘Patient Dumping’

AARP Foundation Sues CA Nursing Facility Chain for Alleged ‘Patient Dumping’


AARP Foundation has filed a lawsuit on behalf of 82-year old nursing facility resident Gloria Single against Pioneer House nursing facility, RHF Foundation, and their corporate affiliates, charging that they illegally dumped her into a hospital.  The suit contends that the defendants are willfully violating a State order requiring that they allow her to return home and seeks an injunction so she can return to Pioneer House to be with her 93-year old husband, who still lives there.

Ms. Single is joined as a plaintiff by the public interest organization California Long Term Care Ombudsman Association (CLTCOA).  According to the complaint, CLTCOA “has taken the extreme measure of bringing this case because nursing facilities, such as Pioneer House, routinely ignore State Readmission Orders because the State refuses to enforce them itself.”

Pioneer House sent Ms. Single to a hospital, then refused to allow her to return home after the hospital medically cleared her to leave.  In response, Ms. Single exercised her right to an administrative hearing before the California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS), where both sides submitted evidence and sworn testimony.  After she prevailed at that hearing and DHCS ordered the facility to readmit Ms. Single, Pioneer House and RHF Foundation continued to refuse to readmit her.

Federal and California laws provide strong protections against evictions of nursing home residents. Residents have very specific rights that are intended to prevent inappropriate, unnecessary and untimely transfers and discharges. States must provide a “fair hearing” for nursing facility residents who claim that they have been illegally evicted.  Mrs. Single’s suit alleges that because California has failed to enforce the readmission orders resulting from such hearings, facilities like Pioneer House see no downside in disobeying the orders.

“The problem is that no state agency will take responsibility for enforcing these orders,” said Kelly Bagby of AARP Foundation Litigation, who also represents Plaintiffs.  “Resident dumping is a growing trend and serious danger to seniors in California.  Until the State does something, our only recourse is going to be filing suits like this.  Three years ago, the federal government told California that it had to enforce these orders, and it has done nothing. The time has come for the State to protect its elderly citizens and stop this abusive practice.”

In 2016, AARP and AARP Foundation filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services asking the federal government to compel California to enforce its own readmission orders.  As a result of that complaint, the federal government again, directed the State of California to enforce administrative law judges’ decisions for people like Mrs. Single.

But to no avail.  The AARP Foundation lawsuit followed.



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Oregon Launches Dynamic Work and Save Retirement Savings Program

Oregon Launches Dynamic Work and Save Retirement Savings Program


Oregon’s workforce is feeling anxious about retirement – more than half don’t have a workplace retirement savings option. But the retirement landscape is changing in the state with the launch of OregonSaves.

“OregonSaves is an easier way to save for retirement,” said Joyce DeMonnin, communications and media relations director for AARP Oregon. “It’s specifically for the 1 million Oregonians who don’t have a retirement option at their work.”

Oregon, one of nine states that have approved AARP-backed state-based, private sector retirement savings programs, is the first to actually implement its program. A pilot phase was launched earlier this year, and full-scale implementation is underway.

The OregonSaves program got high marks from a DHM Research poll conducted in Oregon during the summer with nearly 80% approval rating among Oregonians across party lines, according to John Horvick, DHM Vice President and Political Director. About the same percentage would recommend the program to friends and family.

Horvick notes, “Oregonians are facing two big challenges to our financial future: we aren’t saving enough for retirement, and many of us don’t have access to the tools that can help us save. OregonSaves is a first-of-its-kind retirement savings option that aims to fill in these gaps.” The survey found 63% of Oregonians are anxious about retirement.

“With OregonSaves, billions of dollars will be saved, that aren’t being saved today,” said State Treasurer Tobias Read, the chair of the Oregon Retirement Savings Board. “OregonSaves will improve the bottom line for workers, families, businesses and ultimately taxpayers.”

OregonSaves started with two “pilot” programs and is now facilitating the process for employers with 100 or more employees. There is a rolling phase-in for the program through 2020. 75% of employees in the pilot programs are in the OregonSaves program with an average paycheck contribution of more than $70. With just the pilot employers enrolled now, the program has more than $110,000 in savings.

“We think it’s a win-win for Oregon,” DeMonnin said.



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Nancy LeaMond named Top Lobbyist by ‘The Hill’ newspaper

Nancy LeaMond named Top Lobbyist by ‘The Hill’ newspaper


AARP Chief Advocacy and Engagement Officer Nancy LeaMond was recently named a 2017 Top Lobbyist by The Hill. 

This year, she is being recognized in the grass roots category, which includes power players in the Nations Capital.

During her tenure at AARP, LeaMond has led several landmark campaigns, including: Take A Stand, You’ve Earned a Say, Health Action Now and Divided We Fail.

LeaMond is a nationally recognized leader in health, retirement security and other issues important to older Americans. Her career spans nearly 40 years in the government and nonprofit sectors.

She has been named by The Hill as one of the Top Lobbyists every year since 2011.



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2017 AARP Purpose Prize™ winners announced

2017 AARP Purpose Prize™ winners announced


AARP recently announced the five winners of the AARP Purpose Prize™The AARP Purpose Prize™ recognizes outstanding work by people age 50 and over that is focused on advancing social good.

The winners of the 2017 AARP Purpose Prize Award are:

Cynthia Barnett, founder and CEO, Amazing Girls Science, Norwalk, Conn.
Retired high school administrator Barnett was disappointed to see girls losing interest in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), so she created Amazing Girls Science. Through activities like coding camps, robotics workshops, and hackathons, the nonprofit inspires young girls to consider STEM-focused careers.

Reid Cox, co-founder and CFO, iFoster, Truckee, Calif.
Cox and his wife Serita, a former foster child, put their tech company experience to work in order to help families navigate the challenges of foster care. Their online community, iFoster, connects foster children and families with highly needed financial, educational, and social support resources.

James Farrin, executive director, The Petey Greene Program, Princeton, NJ
In 2007, former business consultant Farrin gathered 20 students from his alma mater Princeton University to tutor prison inmates studying for the GED. The Petey Greene Program — named for a former inmate-turned-activist and popular 70s- and 80s-era radio/TV host — has flourished, with students from 30 colleges now tutoring 1,500 individuals in 34 facilities.

Celeste Mergens, founder and CEO, Days for Girls, Mount Vernon, Wash.
Mergens started Days for Girls eight years ago to supply young girls in a Kenyan orphanage with feminine hygiene products so they wouldn’t have to miss school during their periods. This nonprofit has helped 800,000 women and girls worldwide, sidestepping cultural taboos to educate them about their bodies.

Mike Weaver, Founder, Weaver & Concerned Citizens of Aiken/Atlanta Now (WeCCAAN), Atlanta, Ga.
Former college professor Weaver teaches the value of public service by bringing teens and adults together for service-learning trips to communities in need. From cleaning vacant lots to creating community gardens, Weaver and Concerned Citizens of Aiken/Atlanta Now is making a difference in the lives and futures of its participants as well as the recipients of their volunteerism. Weaver is also the recipient of 2017 Andrus Award for Intergenerational Excellence, named after AARP’s founder.

In recognition of their outstanding community-focused work, each winner will receive a $50,000 cash award from AARP at the AARP Purpose Prize Award Gala, to be held in Chicago November 2.

In addition, AARP named 10 individuals AARP Purpose Prize Awards Fellows, they are: Bonnie Addario, Founder and Chair, Bonnie Addario Lung Cancer Foundation, San Carlos, Calif.; Gary Eichhorn, CEO, Music & Youth Initiative Boston, Mass.; Laurie Green, MD, Founder/ President & CEO, The MAVEN ProjectSan Francisco, Calif.; Annie Griffiths, Executive Director, Ripple Effect Images, Reston, Va.; Cindy Kerr, Founder/CEO, Ryan’s Case for Smiles, Wayne, Pa.; Sister Marilyn Lacey, Mercy Beyond Borders, Santa Clara, Calif.; Ashok Malhotra, Founder/President, The Ninash Foundation, Oneonta, N.Y.; Anne Pollack, Executive Director/Founder, Crossing Point Arts, Inc., New York, N.Y.; Lynn Price, Founder, Camp to Belong, Aurora, Colo., and Juanita Suber, President, My Sistah’s Place/Golden Generations, Inc., St. Petersburg, Fla.

Nominations are now open for the 2018 AARP Purpose Prize, here: www.aarp.org/purposeprize



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New Fraud Watch Network Campaign Informs Americans About Social Media Scams

New Fraud Watch Network Campaign Informs Americans About Social Media Scams


Today, we unveiled a new Fraud Watch Network campaign to inform Americans about social media hazards and provide information about how consumers can protect themselves and their loved ones. While roughly 70 percent of Americans regularly use social media, according to the Pew Research Center, many aren’t aware of these new types of scams.

We understand that scammers have been using email and telephone calls to target unsuspecting victims for years. But con artists are just as likely to use Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms to execute their insidious scams to steal people’s money and identities.

That is why we created this educational campaign that includes online videos and a new website; and warns Americans about specific social media scams, such as the coupon scam and the genealogy scam:

  • Fraudsters execute the coupon scam by distributing advertisements featuring too-good-to-be-true deals on hot items. The real goal is to charge consumers’ credit cards for phony goods or products that will never arrive, or to collect personal information for identity theft.

 

  • The genealogy scam capitalizes on the current popularity of ancestry research. Scammers set up a legitimate-looking website and social media account – often mimicking the name of an authentic genealogy site by altering a character or two of the name. Victims are duped into providing their credit card information, Social Security numbers and other personal information to the identity thieves.

 

In addition to the new online resources, AARP Fraud Watch Network Ambassador Frank Abagnale participated in several broadcast interviews to discuss tips on how to recognize various types of social media scams and how to remain safe while using social media sites.

Abagnale provided these 4 tips to avoid identity theft via social media:

  • Never post personal information, including a Social Security number – not even the last four digits — birthday, place of birth, home address, phone numbers, or personal account information.

 

  • Avoid posting a front-facing picture on social media sites. A con artist can copy the image and use it to create a photo ID that can be used to steal a person’s identity.

 

  • Set the privacy options for each social media account to restrict personal information, so it can only be viewed by a select group of people. Check the privacy settings regularly.

 

  • Don’t log in to social media accounts via a public wireless network, where scammers can lurk. A 2016 survey by the AARP Fraud Watch Network found that more than 70 percent of the respondents have accessed their email, Facebook and other social media accounts via free public Wi-Fi.

 

For more resources and tips on social media scams, visit http://www.aarp.org/SocialScams.



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AARP CEO named to The NonProfit Times ‘Power & Influence Top 50’ List

AARP CEO named to The NonProfit Times ‘Power & Influence Top 50’ List


For the fifth consecutive year, The NonProfit Times (NPT) is honoring CEO Jo Ann Jenkins as one of their “Power & Influence Top 50.”

The annual list honors non-profit executives and strategists who have distinguished themselves as “initiators of concepts that will have legs and are already having impact.”

According to NPT, “the 2017 honorees were selected from a group of about 300 top executives. A committee of NPT staff, contributors and a few executives plugged in to executive movement were involved in the selection process.”

In addition, Jenkins has been added to the NPT’s Power & Influence Hall of Fame. She, along with the other 49 honorees, will be honored at the gala’s 20th Anniversary Gala next month at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.



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