(INDIANA) – Indiana is one of only eight states recently selected to join Helping States Support Families Caring for an Aging America.
This multi-state collaboration is aimed at strengthening state-based opportunities to support family caregivers of older adults. The national initiative, led by the Center for Health Care Strategies, is made possible by The John A. Hartford Foundation and The Michigan Health Endowment Fund.
Currently in the United States, 41 million individuals care for a family member or friend age 50 or older. Family caregiving is an activity that spans generations — across all racial, ethnic and cultural identities as well as income and education levels. Ensuring that family caregivers have what they need to support their loved ones with complex needs, maintain their own well-being, and improve the health outcomes of older adults is critical and takes on heightened importance in today’s pandemic environment.
Over the next two years, representatives from the Division of Aging will work alongside the Indiana Department of Health, Caregiver Homes from Seniorlink and the AARP. This Indiana coalition will join colleagues from other participating states to engage with CHCS and other leading experts as well as benefit from peer-to-peer learning opportunities to help develop and/or enhance strategies to assist family caregivers and strengthening family caregivers’ capacity. Examples might include the use of new technologies, increased access to respite care, and formal training for family caregivers.
This is the second phase of this national initiative focused on helping states strengthen policies and programs to support family caregivers. CHCS will distill lessons from the states’ efforts, which will be shared broadly with stakeholders across the country.
For more information, visit www.chcs.org/supportingfamilycaregivers/.
The Division of Aging’s Structured Family Caregiving program is an example of a key initiative being emphasized as part of Governor Holcomb’s pursuit of a long-term services and supports system that focuses on outcomes and ensures the best care for Medicaid-eligible, elderly Hoosiers. It is also a way Indiana is responding to caregiver calls for help due to the rapidly growing aging population as well as longevity in life experience.
You can read much more about efforts to support family caregiving in this article.