LTSS Newsletter—February 2020

Upcoming webinar: Transportation in Indian Country, Wednesday, February 26

Long-Term Services and Supports

Technical assistance for culturally competent care
February 2020
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Bringing LTSS close to home

Accessing LTSS can be complicated for many people who do not have adequate and timely transportation. Recently, the Colville Tribal Convalescent Center spoke with CMS about the importance of having an LTSS facility close to their tribal citizens. Having a nearby location helps the tribe provide the best care in a setting where citizens are comfortable. Also, a conveniently located program helps resolve transportation concerns and keep patients connected to their families and friends.

Want to learn more about other LTSS programs across Indian Country? Visit the Program Examples page to see what others are doing.

    Transportation and LTSS
    The LTSS Technical Assistance Center provides information on how several other programs are working to keep elders close to their homes and families, including a report that provides examples (PDF, 1.2 MB, 17 p) of home- and community-based assisted living facilities in Indian Country.
Videos with tips from successful programs, as well as experts in a variety of topics, are also available on the LTSS Program Example Video page.
On Wednesday, February 26, CMS will present a webinar on LTSS and transportation in Indian Country. Learn more or register now.

Preparing for power outages

From powering equipment to keeping patients warm in the winter, long-term care facilities rely on power for many aspects of care. It is crucial to have a plan in place for keeping patients safe when a natural disaster or other issue causes a loss of power.

A white paper on Healthcare Facilities and Power Outages (PDF, 870 KB, 44 p) from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and HHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response provides guidance to health care facilities on how to improve their level of preparedness for power outages.

You can also learn more about how several tribal nursing homes approach disaster preparedness in the report Tribal Nursing Home Best Practices: Emergency Preparedness (PDF, 614 KB, 14 p).

Upcoming webinar

Transportation in Indian Country

Wednesday, February 26

This presentation will highlight the importance of transportation for tribal elders and people with disabilities. Learn about innovative approaches and resources for improving transportation services in Indian Country. Hear how a program is addressing transportation challenges in remote areas of the Navajo Reservation and other areas of New Mexico.

By the end of the webinar, participants will:

  • Understand challenges for meeting the transportation needs of elders and people with disabilities
  • Explore creative solutions and promotion strategies to address these issues
  • Recognize the importance of formal and informal partnerships to enhance and coordinate transportation services
  • Identify sources of information, technical assistance, and support to improve transportation

Please note your location's call-in time:

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

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

Register for the LTSS webinar.


Melissa Gray

Melissa Gray
Program Manager
National Aging and Disability Transportation Center
National Association of Area Agencies on Aging

Caregiver's corner

Evaluating quality of care when you live far away

Even if you live far away, you can keep tabs on the quality of care being provided to the elders in your life.

The National Institute on Aging recommends:

  • checking in with the primary caregiver regularly to stay on top of care and note any changes
  • having friends, neighbors, or an elder care provider stop by to see your elder unannounced
  • taking notes on any abnormal comments or mood changes during calls with the elder

If you suspect abuse, see if someone you trust can check on the elder for you. Report any suspected abuse to adult protective services. Learn more about how to report through the ACL National Center on Elder Abuse.

Abuse can happen to any older person, by a loved one, a hired caregiver, or a stranger. Abuse can happen at home, at a relative's home, or in an eldercare facility.

There are many types of abuse:

Watch for these signs of abuse:

Seems depressed, confused, or withdrawn
Isolated from friends and family
Has unexplained bruises, burns, or scars
Appears dirty, underfed, dehydrated, over-or undermedicated, or not receiving needed care for medical problems
Has bed sores or other preventable conditions
Recent changes in banking or spending patterns
Talk with the older adult and then contact the local Adult Protective Services, Long-Term Care Ombudsman, or the police.
Upcoming events and deadlines

National Tribal Public Health Summit and Pre-Summit

Date: March 17–19, 2020
Location: Omaha, NE

Register for the National Tribal Public Health Summit

Sponsored by the National Indian Health Board (NIHB), the summit will explore:

  • health promotion and disease prevention
  • public health policy, infrastructure, workforce, and systems
  • substance misuse, opioids, and behavioral health
  • environmental health and climate change
  • traditional public health practice

Logo for the National Indian Health Board's 11th Annual National Tribal Public Health Summit

Pre-summit session: Brain Health Action Institute for Tribal Nations

Additionally, on March 17, NIHB and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will host a free pre-summit session on reducing the risk for dementia in Native communities.

2020 Trailblazers in Aging Award nominations

Nomination deadline: March 4, 2020

The National Council on Aging is accepting nominations for its 2020 Trailblazers in Aging Awards. These awards recognize individuals and organizations who have paved new paths on the road to aging well.

LinkedIn Tribal Affairs Group
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. If you are a member of the group already, you can access it by clicking the group name under Groups on the left side of your LinkedIn landing page.
About the TA Center

The LTSS Technical Assistance Center provides a roadmap for American Indian and Alaska Native communities who are planning and implementing LTSS programs to care for their elders and people with disabilities.

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.

Send Us Your News

Do you have news to share about LTSS in Indian Country? Send it to, and we'll include it in a newsletter. Contact us with other comments or feedback, too.

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