LTSS Newsletter—August 2021

Stay tuned for the September 2021 LTSS webinar

American Indian/Alaska Native Long-Term Services and Supports

Technical assistance for culturally competent care
August 2021
CMS LTSS banner
LTSS Technical Assistance Center
Visit the online LTSS TA Center for videos, best practices, toolkits, a resource library, and a step-by-step planning roadmap.
Get email updates
Join us on LinkedIn
Follow us on Twitter

Dementia and COVID-19

Research suggests that people with dementia may be more likely to get COVID-19, compared with those who do not have dementia. This increased risk may be partly due to difficulties remembering to wash hands, wear masks, and take other protective measures.

Based on these findings, it is important for long-term care providers and caregivers to consider and apply specific approaches for protecting this population.

A list of tips from the Alzheimer’s Association recommends ways in which caregivers can help safeguard those with dementia during the pandemic.

To help people with dementia remember to wash their hands regularly, the list recommends leaving notes in visible areas, like near the bathroom sink, and offering frequent verbal reminders. Additionally, vaccination for people with dementia and their caregivers is highlighted as a critical way to help keep them safe.

A portion of the infographic LTSS and Dementia: Health and Safety Tips
    Dementia care in Indian Country  

The CMS Long-Term Services and Supports (LTSS) Technical Assistance (TA) Center offers a variety of resources on dementia in Indian Country, including infographics, videos, assessment tools, informational reports, tips for family caregivers, and more.

The CMS infographic LTSS and Dementia: Health and Safety Tips (PDF, 2.3 MB, 1 p) offers guidance for those who provide care to American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) people with dementia. It includes considerations for identifying symptoms of COVID-19 in people with dementia, protecting them from getting sick, and planning for the possibility of the caregiver or the patient becoming ill.

Especially during the stress of a global pandemic, it is important for caregivers of people with dementia to protect their own wellbeing to avoid burnout and continue providing high-quality care. The CMS infographic LTSS and Dementia: Self Care and Mental Health Tips (PDF, 2.4 MB, 1 p) describes ways to ensure both the person with dementia and the caregiver have the support they need to stay healthy.


The impact of COVID-19 on Title VI programs

A new fact sheet from the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a) (PDF, 656 KB, 2 pp) highlights some of the ways in which COVID-19 has affected Title VI services and programs. These findings emerged from the National Title VI Program Survey, which examined the services that Title VI programs provide to tribal communities. Later in August, n4a will release the full Title VI survey toolkit, which will contain a report on the survey results, additional fact sheets, and shareable materials.

A dramatic increase in elders' needs as a result of COVID-19: 85% report the number of people they serve has increased; 82% report that the needs of their existing clients have increased.

The fact sheet shows a sharp rise in needs among elders, demonstrated by this graphic from n4a

Caregiver’s corner

For the Love of Our People campaign

For the Love of Our People campaign logo

Getting vaccinated against COVID-19 is an important step that caregivers can take to protect themselves and those around them.

For the Love of Our People encourages everyone in Indian Country to get vaccinated to help keep communities safe.

Created through a partnership between the Urban Indian Health Institute and IllumiNative, the campaign offers various resources, including a vaccination conversation guide (PDF, 282 KB, 3 pp). It also links directly to a tool to help people find COVID-19 vaccines in their area.

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.
Upcoming webinar

Stay tuned for the September LTSS webinar

There will not be an LTSS webinar in August, but planning for the September webinar is underway, so check back soon for more information. In the meantime, you can view archived LTSS webinars, such as one that covers the Alaska Native Traditional Foods Movement. All LTSS webinars are archived on the LTSS TA Center.

About the LTSS webinars

LTSS webinars share information and tools for tribal LTSS programs. Topics range from financing to elder abuse prevention to culturally appropriate dementia care.

Upcoming events

NIH virtual workshop on food security and addressing nutritional disparities

September 21–23, 2021, 12:30–5:30 pm Eastern
Register for the workshop

This virtual workshop will examine food insecurity, neighborhood food environments, and nutrition-related health disparities in tribal communities. To help address these disparities, the goal of the workshop is to review existing knowledge, articulate gaps in the research, and identify opportunities, solutions, and new research approaches.

Virtual National Tribal Health Conference

October 4–8, 2021
Register for the conference

Hosted by the National Indian Health Board, the annual National Tribal Health Conference focuses on health policy and related implications and opportunities for tribes. This year’s theme is The Future of Native Health in Our Changing World. This year’s conference will be held virtually.

LeadingAge Annual Meeting

October 24–27, 2021, in Atlanta, GA
Register for the event

The LeadingAge Annual Meeting + EXPO will feature presentations from experts in aging services and will create a forum for networking and forming partnerships.

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.

About the newsletter

American Indian/Alaska Native 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