News

2023-09-25 Spotlight: For Disabled Couples, a Plea for Marriage

New York Times (free access)
By Tammy LaGorce, September 15, 2023 On Wednesday afternoon, 20 couples gathered in front of a stage at the National Mall in Washington to recite their commitment vows. Some brides had on white gowns while grooms wore top hats. Others donned orange T-shirts printed with the ...

DignityMA Study Session: Using Class Actions to Promote System Change

Steven Schwartz, Legal Director, Center for Public Representation, was the featured guest for a DignityMA Study Session on September 22, 2023. His topic is Using Class Actions to Promote System Change. Additional Information: Steven ...

DignityMA Study Session – ReFraming Aging

Presenter: Melissa Donegan, LSW,  Director, Healthy Living Center of Excellence, AgeSpan Wednesday, November 8, 2023, 10:00 a.m. Join ReFraming Aging Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 856 6669 8185
Passcode: 394342
One tap mobile:+13052241968,,85666698185#,,,,*394342# US ...

DignityMA Study Session – PACE Program 101 and More

PACE - Program of All Inclusive Care for the Elderly Presenter: Candace Kuebel, LCSW, MSW, MBA, Executive Director,
MassPACE Association Wednesday, October 18, 2023, 10:00 a.m. Zoom link for PACE
Meeting ID: 817 9848 3893
Passcode: 334338
One tap mobile:+13052241968,,81798483893#,,,,*334338# US
Telephone: +1 305 224 1968 US ...

DignityMA Study Session – The Future of Nursing Homes: Navigator Homes of Martha’s Vineyard – A case Study

Wednesday, September 27, 2023, 2:00 p.m. Embracing the core values in the disruptive concept for nursing home design, the "Green House" model, Navigator Homes of Martha's Vineyard, opening this fall, will house 70 people in 5 homes with 14 residents each. Each resident has a private room with bathroom. Residents ...

Nursing Home Staffing

This important topic was not a DignityMA Study Session, but this post attempts to be a compilation of current information on the topic. CMS has released a Notice of Proposed Rule Making (NPRM) that would implement a minimum staffing standard in nursing homes. DignityMA is following this top closely, and ...

2023-09-11 Spotlight: HHS Proposes Minimum Staffing Standards to Enhance Safety and Quality in Nursing Homes

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
September 1, 2023

Today, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), issued a proposed rule that seeks to establish comprehensive staffing requirements for nursing homes—including, for the first time, national minimum nurse staffing standards—to ensure ...

DignityMA Study Session with Secy. Edward Augustus

DignityMA Study Session with Secretary Edward Augustus, Executive Office of Housing and Livable Communities Wednesday, September 13, 2023 from 1:00 to 2:00 p.m. The captions below are auto-generated by Vimeo. Secretary Augustus has served as Chief of Staff for Massachusetts Congressman James McGovern, City Manager for Worcester, and Chancellor for ...

2023-08-21 Spotlight: Graying of Massachusetts prisons cries out for a dose of compassion

*The Boston Globe, By The Editorial Board, August 27, 2023 (updated) That starts with increased use of medical parole for those with dementia and Alzheimer’s. D.B., as his lawyers refer to him, was 87, suffering from dementia and other age-related illnesses. Doctors had already confirmed he was both terminally ill ...

2023-08-21 Spotlight: How Nursing Homes Failed to Protect Residents from Covid

By Paula Span, New York Times (free access), August 19, 2023

The first terrifying wave of Covid-19 caused 60,000 deaths among residents of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities within five months. As the pandemic wore on, medical guidelines called for promptly administering newly approved antiviral treatments to infected patients ...

2023-08-07 Spotlight: My Friend is Trapped in a Nursing Home. What Can I Do?

By Kwame Anthony Appiah, New York Times Ethicist columnist
New York Times (free access), July 28, 2023 Five years ago, I began volunteering as a bill payer for a legally blind, 95-year-old woman on public assistance. The job involved handling paperwork that clients could no longer handle themselves, thus helping enable ...

DPH Proposed Regulations Eliminating COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate for Personnel

(Scroll down to read DignityMA testimony for this proposal.) The Massachusetts Department of Public Health has issued proposed amendments to regulations for long term care facilities and other providers aligning the flu and COVID-19 vaccine requirements for personnel, eliminating the mandate that all personnel be vaccinated with COVID-19 vaccine. Under ...

FY ’24 DIGNITY SUPPORTED BUDGET ITEMS IN THE FINAL CONFERENCE REPORT

Report of the DignityMA Legislative Work Group 7/31/2023 Download the FY 2024 DignityMA Supported Budget Items (pdf). The following items, under consideration by the Conference Committee, were all approved in the final budget that is being presented to the House and Senate today. 28 Dignity Advocates "took action" by contacting ...

DignityMA Letter Regarding Mass General Brigham’s Skilled Nursing Facility Collaborative

To: Anne Klibanski, MD, President and CEO, Mass General Brigham Dear Dr. Klibanski, Dignity Alliance Massachusetts is a statewide, non-profit coalition of individuals and organizations advocating for older adults, people with disabilities, and their caregivers. By way of introduction to Dignity Alliance, we have attached a copy of our most ...

Dignity Alliance Wants to be Cool!

Media Release Calls for Executive Action and Legislation to promote cooling for older adults and people with disabilities As another heat wave with temperatures in the nineties begins this week, Dignity Alliance Massachusetts is calling on state government to protect older adults and people with disabilities from the dangers of ...

DignityMA Testimony for Public Meeting Access

On July 26, 2023, the 33rd anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disability Act, Dignity Alliance MA submitted written testimony to a public meeting of the Joint Committee on State Administration and Regulatory Oversight in support of access to public meetings by older adults and people with disabilities ...

2023-07-24 Spotlight: It’s Time to Bring Back Asylums

Editor’s note: This is a provocative essay. It includes a reference to the Worcester (MA) Recovery Center, a facility for 320 long-term patients with private rooms and “a recovery-inspired residential design” which opened in 2012. If you have observations or comments regarding the essay which you would like to share, ...

2023-07-17 Spotlight: What’s Hot? Older Adults!

Opinion by Richard T. Moore, former Massachusetts State Senator and Chair Dignity Alliance Massachusetts Legislative Workgroup, July 17, 2023
FYI:  Dignity Digest 145 contains the footnotes for this article.

In the Pacific Northwest, “As records toppled, lives were lost. Early investigations suggest that nearly one thousand people died as a direct result ...

Study Session: Older American Act Programs and New Rulemaking

The U.S. Administration for Community Living (ACL) is seeking input on proposed updates to the regulations for its Older Americans Act (OAA) programs. The proposed rule is the first substantial update to most OAA program regulations in 35 years. Scroll Down to read comments or download Dignity Alliance MA submitted ...