Your Guide to the White House Conference on Aging

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This week marked the sixth White House Conference on Aging in Washington, D.C. The decennial conference brings together government officials, health care experts, advocates and members of the public to discuss the issues that will affect Americans as they plan for retirement, care for aging loved ones and strive for quality of life in the decades to come.

Here's what you and your loved ones need to know about the conversations coming out of Washington this week.

A National Emphasis on Quality  

Discussions at this week’s conference reflected a national emphasis on quality care for older Americans.  For many years, long term care professionals have been working together to make skilled nursing centers better places to live by enhancing person-centered care and ensuring quality of care for you or your loved ones. Just this week, the White House announced several new federal initiatives to that end, like free online training courses for health professionals and grants to advance the health care workforce, to improve your well-being as you age.

Technology Opportunities to Support Older Adults

Technology can play a powerful role in the lives of you and your aging family members. The White House announced that federal datasets relevant to the aging population will be available on Data.gov, the government’s open data website, making it easier for the private sector to conduct research and create new programs that support older Americans. Several companies announced technology initiatives that will provide support for the elderly:

  • Walgreens is advancing the technologies of its telehealth services provider to offer aging Americans digital access to board-certified doctors at any time.
  • Taxi and rideshare company Uber announced a pilot program that partners with senior community centers to offer free or discounted rides to older Americans.  The program, initially launching in five states, will also provide seniors with tutorials that show how to use the Uber platform.
  • Grocery delivery service Peapod has improved web accessibility so those who can’t shop at traditional grocery stores can use its services through mobile and web applications.

New Eldercare Resources

The White House launched Aging.gov, an online federal resource for you, your loved ones and other caregivers. The website provides government-wide resources and services to help adults across the country find information on topics such as healthy aging, long term care and Social Security.

Protections to Prevent Fraud

Federal agencies announced new initiatives that will protect against the financial exploitation of aging Americans. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) plans to collaborate with industry and consumer advocates to develop tools that will help recognize and prevent financial abuse of elderly Americans. The U.S. Department of Justice also plans to partner with national law enforcement organizations to promote training for agents.

The American Banking Association Foundation has also developed an interactive mapping tool that identifies bank programs in communities across the country that are educating you and your loved ones on elder fraud prevention and creating partnerships with law enforcement and protective services.

For more information and announcements from the 2015 White House Conference on Aging, view the event fact sheet.