By 2030, 1.8 million or almost one in five Virginians will be age 65 or older. However, according to a recent statewide survey, the majority of Boomers in Virginia do not believe their communities are ready to support them in their later years. Virginia’s State Plan for Aging Services is a four-year plan produced by the Virginia Department for the Aging to meet the requirements of the Older Americans Act. The plan addresses the challenges and solutions Virginia faces in providing adequate and affordable housing, transportation, and healthcare services to older adults that can support their overwhelming desire to age in place.
Virginians age 65+ are now twice as likely to be living in poverty as they were a decade ago. This increased poverty rate coupled with the upcoming age shift will further strain the public service delivery system that provides older adults, their families, and caregivers with needed care and support. Virginia’s plan on aging recognizes the increased demand for more services and supports that will allow older Virginians to comfortably age in place. The plan provides strategic solutions and points out existing initiatives that accommodate the needs of this growing population.
Other plan highlights include:
- In 2008, Virginia launched the Money Follows the Person (MFP) program to provide additional supports to older Virginians who are transitioning from long-term care institutions back to their communities.
- Virginia’s No Wrong Door (NWD) initiative was created to address individual long-term care preferences of older adults, strengthen coordination of local aging services, and empower older consumers to make informed decisions about available long-term care services.
- Virginia Accessible Housing Solutions, Inc. (VAHS) is a non-profit organization licensed to certify Easy Living Homes in Virginia that ensure residents of all ages and abilities can easily access necessary amenities throughout the home.
- The Virginia Blueprint for Livable Communities is a planning resource designed to guide communities in supporting healthy and successful aging in place while improving the livability of communities for all residents.
How to Use
The Virginia State Plan for Aging Services is a useful resource for planners, local officials, and policymakers seeking ways to accommodate the changing needs of their community. Through this plan, Virginia shows that it understands the severity of the upcoming age shift and the importance of planning ahead to provide needed services and supports for older Virginians. Additionally, planners and local officials can use the web-based resources provided in the plan to gain an understanding of the progress Virginia has made in planning for its rapidly expanding senior population.
View full report: Virginia State Plan on Aging – 2011-2015 (PDF – 722 KB)