LTSS Newsletter—April 2019

Upcoming webinar: From Tundra to Table: The Seal Oil Project—April 24, 2019
Long-Term Services and Supports

Technical assistance for culturally competent care
April 2019
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Monitoring elders' nutrition needs

Many American Indians and Alaska Natives experience chronic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and osteoporosis. But while nutrition is cited as a primary prevention method for these conditions, one in four American Indians and Alaska Natives experience food insecurity.

Screen and Intervene
A free Screen and Intervene course, by the Food Research and Action Center and AARP Foundation, is designed to help health care providers and community-based partners screen for food insecurity among older adults.


Nutrition programs and services can help improve food security for elders, maintain or improve their health, and reduce their need for institutional care.


Nutrition services funding opportunity
The Administration for Community Living (ACL) has released the funding opportunity, Innovations in Nutrition Programs and Services.


Awardees will focus on outcomes such as methods to improve collaboration with local health care organizations, decrease health care costs for a specific population, or decrease the need for institutional care among older adults.


The application deadline is May 28, 2019.


Nutrition Resources


For tribal nursing homes, best practices (PDF, 1.6 MB, 12 pgs.) suggest providing premium nutrition through traditional foods.


Benefits of traditional foods include:


  • better care – residents are more satisfied by familiar foods, which make them feel at home
  • better health – residents are likely to eat more, maintain healthy weights, and increase their fiber intake to combat diabetes
  • smarter spending – facilities experience less food waste and source foods from their own communities

Learn more from CMS Long-Term Services and Supports Technical Assistance Center resources:



New data on AI/AN disability rates

A review of recent data indicates that disabilities are twice as common among American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) people than the U.S. population in general. The National Indian Health Board analyzed data from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey and found that the disability rate for AI/AN people ages 35 to 64 is 25.6%, compared to 13.2% for the same age group among the U.S. general population.

For Native-specific information on caring for adults with disabilities, visit the CMS LTSS TA Center. Resources include reports on:

Older Americans Month promotion materials

Older Americans Month logo

May celebrates Older Americans. The Administration for Community Living wants to help you publicize the month.


On their website, find logos, posters, badges, social media graphics, and sample article templates in English and Spanish.


Emergency planning for vulnerable adults

Comprehensive planning helps caregivers and LTSS facilities keep older adults and people with disabilities safe in an emergency. A capacity-building toolkit from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, supports care providers in enhancing their ability to plan for and respond to emergencies.

The toolkit covers emergency preparedness and considerations to help elders and people with disabilities recover after an emergency, such as ensuring continued housing and access to medications.


The importance of Medicare for older AI/ANs


The National Indian Health Board released a report that showcases the growing importance of Medicare for Indian Country. The report, Medicare and American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/ANs): 2017 Estimates from the American Community Survey (PDF, 2 MB, 40 pgs.), includes:

  • one-page briefs on coverage for AI/AN populations in 37 states with tribes or Indian health programs,
  • a brief on Arkansas due to its high number of residents who use Oklahoma's tribal health services and IHS, and
  • a 50-state summary.

2017 National Rates of AI/ANs Ages 65 and Older with Medicare Coverage

Funding opportunities

Legal Assistance Enhancement Program

Deadline: Monday, April 29

The ACL's Legal Assistance Enhancement Program will fund efforts to improve the delivery of legal assistance to older Americans with economic and social needs. The goal is to make legal advice and representation more effective, accessible, and available.


Disability and Rehabilitation Research Projects Program

Deadline: Monday, May 6

The ACL's Disability and Rehabilitation Research Projects Program will support work to advance a wide range of health and function, independent living, and employment outcomes among individuals with disabilities. Grantees will be expected to translate the results of research and development into practice.


Rehabilitation Research and Training Center Program

Deadline: Friday, May 10

Under a Rehabilitation Research and Training Center Program, the Administration for Community Living will award grants for research, training, technical assistance, and related activities that help improve the health and function of people with physical disabilities.

Join the conversation on LinkedIn

Want to learn more about or discuss LTSS in Indian Country? Looking to connect with others working in the same field? Join the Tribal Affairs Group on LinkedIn.



Upcoming webinar

From Tundra to Table: The Seal Oil Project

Wednesday, April 24

This webinar will look into the work it has taken a team of individuals to add seal oil to the menu for elders at the Utuqqanaat Inaat nursing home in Kotzebue, AK. Seal oil is an integral part of the Inupiat diet, but it is prohibited from being served in an institutional setting due to the risk of botulism. The project, if successful, has the potential to impact elders in Kotzebue and the whole state of Alaska.


This webinar will focus on:


  • person-centered care and allowing elders to eat the foods they grew up with
  • the benefits of eating traditional foods
  • past challenges of getting traditional foods approved
  • government agencies, educational institutions, and independent consultants to collaborate with
  • how to develop a hazard analysis and critical control points plan
  • what the approval process looks like

Have questions for our presenter? Let us know before the webinar by emailing

Register now.

Val Kreil

Val Kreil 
Utuqqanaat Inaat


Please note your
location's call-in time:

8 a.m. Hawaii
10 a.m. Alaska
11 a.m. Pacific
11 a.m. Arizona
12 p.m. Mountain
1 p.m. Central
2 p.m. Eastern






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About the Newsletter

Long-Term Services and Supports Solutions is published monthly by the CMS Division of Tribal Affairs to share information, funding opportunities, and resources with LTSS planners, tribal leaders, and supporters.

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Indian Health Service Administration for Community Living