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Pilot Project Helps with Long-Term Care Needs

hospice home care patient with her daughter

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A pilot Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) will begin to provide Options Counseling services this summer to residents of Burleigh County. The three-year pilot project is funded by the Federal Administration on Aging. Services will expand to Morton, Emmons and Kidder counties in year two and to Grant, McLean, Mercer, Oliver, Sheridan, and Sioux counties in year three. The ADRC pilot is based at the West Central Human Service Center (WCHSC) in Bismarck.

The goal of the ADRC approach is to make it easier for older adults, adults with physical disabilities, and their family members to learn about the choices they have for long-term care and supportive services while minimizing confusion, enhancing individual choice, and supporting informed decision-making when individuals and families find they need long-term care services.

The ADRC’s “no wrong door” model offers a “virtual” single point of entry for accessing public and private health and human services via website, phone, and face-to-face contact. The benefit of “no wrong door” ensures that everyone has the same access to information and resources, regardless of where he or she first enters the long-term care system.

Using a web-based information system, Options counselors will, with the permission of the client, be able to coordinate intakes and assessments with community providers to make coordination and access of services easier for consumers and families.

The ADRC will provide reliable and current information about long-term service and support options to help families plan and use resources to their advantage. It will provide service for people of all income levels easing confusion and frustration for the consumer. The consumer will have greater opportunity to direct their future with personal choice and independence, ultimately maximizing quality of life. Planning for long-term care needs decreases incidents of crisis and can delay costly institutional placement.

The ultimate benefit of the ADRC “no wrong door” will be extended independence and improved quality of life for older adults, adults with physical disabilities, and their families.

The ADRC can be contacted at 701-328-8605, 1-888-328-2622, Relay ND 1-800-366-6888 (TTY).

In September, the Federal Administration on Aging awarded the North Dakota Department of Human Services an initial $202,771 grant to develop an ADRC pilot project in the Bismarck region. North Dakota is one of just five states without an ADRC.

AARP North Dakota has a long history of support for a single point of entry which could be accomplished through an ADRC; however, our efforts to secure legislative funding have not been successful. We are working with the N.D. Department of Human Services and the pilot program administrator to guide the implementation of the pilot project. Data from this project will be valuable to legislators in their efforts to serve the state’s aging population and balance our long-term care budget.

We are committed to the successful implementation of the pilot to help ensure that those needing long-term care services would receive comprehensive, consistent information on all of the choices that are available, including services to allow them to remain safely in their own homes.

Other Resources

North Dakota Aging Resources

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