HHS is investing in several strategies to expand access to high-quality services and resources for older adults, people with disabilities, and their caregivers. HHS enhances system capacity to develop processes, policies, and supports that are person centered and provide quality care for older adults and individuals with disabilities, at home or in community-based settings. HHS ensures the availability and equitable access and delivery of evidence-based interventions that focus on research, prevention, treatment, and care of older adults and individuals with disabilities. HHS also supports development and implementation activities to better understand and address the needs of all caregivers across the age and disability spectrum. Below is a selection of strategies HHS is implementing.
In the context of HHS, this Strategic Plan adopts the definition of underserved populations listed in Executive Order 13985: Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities through the Federal Government to refer to “populations sharing a particular characteristic, as well as geographic communities, who have been systematically denied a full opportunity to participate in aspects of economic, social, and civic life”; this definition includes individuals who belong to underserved communities that have been denied such treatment, such as Black, Latino, and Indigenous and Native American persons, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and other persons of color; members of religious minorities; lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) persons; persons with disabilities; persons who live in rural areas; and persons otherwise adversely affected by persistent poverty or inequality. Individuals may belong to more than one underserved community and face intersecting barriers.
Contributing OpDivs and StaffDivs
ACF, ACL, AHRQ, ASPE, CDC, CMS, IHS, NIH, OASH, and OGA work to achieve this objective.
Enhance system capacity to address the health, health related outcomes, and social determinants of health for older adults and individuals with disabilities by developing processes, policies, and supports that are person centered and provide quality care for older adults and individuals with disabilities, at home or in community-based settings
- Deploy approaches to care, including primary care, that promote health and equitable, goal-directed care and self-determination for older adults, persons with disabilities, and caregivers.
- Enhance states’ ability to implement Medicaid Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) and incorporate standardized quality measures to assess and track the adequacy of the HCBS community integration on access, availability, quality, experience of care, health outcomes, and the workforce.
- Support healthcare partners, state, community, profit, and non-profit organizations to expand infrastructure related to needs of older adults, persons with disabilities, and caregivers and improve coordination and communication of resources and services such as in-home services, transportation, digital equipment, broadband access and healthcare to meet the day to day and long-term needs of older adults, persons with disabilities, and caregivers.
- Create pathways for older adults and persons with disabilities from vulnerable immigrant communities, such as refugees and asylees, to access relevant benefits and services, by strengthening the capacity of states, agencies, and providers to deliver services and supply resources that address the needs of these immigrant populations.
Ensure availability and equitable access and delivery of evidence-based interventions that focus on research, prevention, treatment, and care of older adults and individuals with disabilities
- Establish supportive policies, strengthen communication and partnership initiatives for intervention dissemination and clinical treatment and care gaps, and strategic alliances for improved disease management.
- Coordinate across federal agencies and collaborate with state, local, Tribal, private, and non-profit partners to ensure sufficient availability and equitable distribution, and equity in access to evidence-based interventions that prevent onset of symptoms and/or improve management to people diagnosed with multiple chronic conditions.
- Promote self-management programs and behaviors and expand referral and delivery systems to promote healthcare quality.
Support the development and implementation activities to better understand and address the needs of all caregivers across the age and disability spectrum
- Develop and disseminate a National Family Caregiving Strategy as required by the Recognize, Assist, Include, Support and Engage (RAISE) Family Caregivers Act of 2017.
- Leverage technical assistance and resources to address the needs of older adult, kinship families, non-kinship, minor caregivers, at the federal, state, territorial, tribal and community levels.