Put the Residents of Illinois Nursing Homes First

Hey everybody – Jenn here from the Communications team keeping you in the loop on what’s up in Springfield this week. Let’s talk nursing home reform… In 2010 the Illinois General Assembly passed landmark legislation to improve the quality of care in Illinois nursing homes. (WOOHOO!) Among other elements, the new law addressed staffing ratios in nursing homes. Studies have shown that staffing ratios play a vital role in the quality of care nursing home residents receive, particularly when it …

Nursing Homes in Illinois: The Next Steps

Hello, readers. This is Gerardo with AARP Illinois’ Communications team. It was less than two years ago that advocates, legislators and state government got together to craft legislation that has significantly improved care and safety conditions for thousands of nursing home residents in Illinois. AARP was at the center of the reform along with SEIU, Illinois Citizens for Better Care, The Jane Addams Senior Caucus, and the Community Renewal Society.  State Senators Heather Steans and Jacqueline Collins, and State Reps. …

The Takeaway: GOP Debaters Rip Health Care Law; Sex After Heart Attack Okay

At a <a href="http://blogs.suntimes.com/sweet/2012/01/south_carolina_gop_cnn_debate_.html">second South Carolina debate last night</a>, all of the Republican presidential candidates (a crowd pared down to four"”Newt Gingrich, Ron Paul, Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum"”at this point) said that 'Obamacare' can and should be repealed or reversed.

The Takeaway: Who Benefits From New Medical Effectiveness Research Fee?; Cancer Screenings Not Always Free

Beginning in 2012, a new $1-per-person fee on health insurance plans will be used to pay for medical effectiveness research. A health reform loophole means you could still end up paying for some preventative care services. And retirement and aging policy experts say what questions they would pose in a presidential debate.

The Takeaway: States Can Decide On Covered Health Benefits; Obesity Epidemic Rooted In 1950s Moms?

Last Friday, the Obama administration announced that it would leave defining the "essential health benefits" that must be provided by insurance plans under the new health care law up to the states, instead of specifying some national standard of benefits. And the mothers-to-be of the 1950s could be at the root of today's obesity epidemic, according to fitness and nutrition expert Melinda Sothern.

The Takeaway: Public Employees Retiring Too Early?; Health Care’s Mixed-Up Future

Retirement age for public sector workers"”government employees, teachers, firefighters, trash collectors"”is becoming a topic of fierce friction nationwide. And the lines between hospitals, insurance companies and doctors are blurring, as the health care law awaits Supreme Court consideration and the 2014 start date of the individual insurance mandate.