Senior Programs to Benefit from Governor Corbett's Proposed 2013-14 Budget

HARRISBURG, Pa., Feb. 13, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Secretary Brian Duke today spoke to a group of older Pennsylvanians at the Rutherford House, a senior center in Harrisburg, about Governor Tom Corbett's 2013-14 proposed budget.

The budget, due to the Lottery Private Management Agreement, provides an additional $50 million for programs that will enable older Pennsylvanians to remain living in their homes.  This comes at a time when there is an increased demand for services due to the rising number of older adults living in Pennsylvania.

This $50 million is critical to older Pennsylvanians," Duke said. "It represents $20 million that would fund in-home personal care services and home-delivered meals to older Pennsylvanians and some of it also would go toward covering the cost of investigating reports of possible elder abuse cases, which increased by 22 percent in the past year."

Duke also said that a portion of the $50 million would provide money to help Area Agencies on Aging keep up with their growing demand and to fund grants for senior centers to make improvements, among other programs that benefit seniors.

"This $50 million intended in the governor's proposed budget is essential," Duke said.

"By 2030, one in four Pennsylvanians will be 60 or older," Secretary of Aging Brian Duke said. "We are already seeing an increase in need for services and waiting lists exist for some programs.  Additional funding will help those most in need, especially by reducing the waiting list for services."

The proposed budget continues to focus on making sure that Pennsylvanians in need of long-term care services and supports are served in the right setting. It provides the ability for them to stay at home or in the community and it will give the commonwealth a reliable, predictable and enhanced source of funding by increasing Lottery revenues.

Highlights of the Department of Aging's proposed budget include:

  • $20 million for the OPTIONS Program: OPTIONS provides care management, home-delivered meals, protective services and in-home services for individuals age 60 and older. Additional increases in revenue would help decrease the waiting list of 5,400 older adults who are waiting for home support and personal care services to keep them in their homes.
  • $5 million for increased investment in Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs): Pennsylvania's 52 AAAs cover all 67 counties and serve as the front door for the Department of Aging services at the local level. The AAAs serve 600,000 people.
  • $2 million for senior center modernization: This investment will help senior centers prepare for the changing demographics and enable them to provide the programs that address the need of a younger, aging population.
  • $2 million attendant care services:  The Attendant Care Program provides in home personal care services to help people with disabilities that cannot perform daily living tasks by themselves in order to remain in their own homes.
  • $12 million for caregiver support services: The department assists 7,000 caregivers and families who support older, at-risk individuals in their home through the Caregiver Support Program.
  • $10 million for pre-admission assessment: The department assists over 100,000 individuals to determine the most appropriate long-term setting.
  • $227 million for PACE/PACENET: The Pharmaceutical Assistance Contract for the Elderly and the PACE Needs Enhancement Tier, better known as PACE and PACENET respectively, will be able to continue to provide financial assistance to more than 300,000 older Pennsylvanians for prescription medications.

For more information on the Department of Aging and the Governor Corbett's proposed 2013-14 budget visit www.pa.gov

Media contact: Christina Reese, 717-783-1550

SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Aging




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