Friday, January 30, 2009

Federal Funding expiring July 2009! PLEASE HELP!

Contact Sen. Inouye for Prevention Funding
Take Action!
Act Now!

As you likely know, Congress is quickly moving to pass an economic stimulus package. We are pleased that the House has included a section providing $3 billion for a "Prevention and Wellness Fund." Of the $3 billion, at least $2.35 billion would go to programs funded under the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. However, no funding is designated for prevention and wellness programs under the Older Americans Act.

The National Council on Aging (NCOA) is trying to get the final Senate bill to require Secretary Daschle to set aside $200 million for Administration on Aging (AoA) evidence-based prevention (EBP) and wellness programs, such as the Ke Ola Pono Chronic Disease Self-Management (CDSMP) and EnhanceFitness (EF) programs currently being offered in Hawaii under an existing AoA demonstration grant. More information on Hawaii's programs can be obtained from the Executive Office on Aging at 586-0100. Hawaii's federal funding for CDSMP and EnhanceFitness will end July 2009.

NCOA is hoping that you can help us remedy this unfortunate oversight by supporting an amendment to provide an additional $200 million for evidence-based prevention and wellness programs administered by the Administration on Aging.

Senator Inouye is the Chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee and can play an important role in getting the amendment included in the stimulus package, expected to be considered by the Committee next week. To be successful, we need your help now! Changing the package at this point in the process will be difficult and we need to take action very quickly to find a leader on the Committee who can help move this important priority forward.

Please call or email Senator Inouye's office today or tomorrow. Suggested phone call talking points and email language are provided for your consideration and use. In addition, please share this alert with others in your state who would be willing to weigh in with the Senator's office on this important issue.

You can leave a message at Sen. Inouye's office at (202) 224-3934 and you can send an email by clicking on the "Take Action" link above.

Phone call talking points:

*The Senate stimulus bill should include funding for evidence-based prevention and wellness programs within the Administration on Aging.

*The House Stimulus bill provides $3 billion for a Prevention and Wellness Fund, with about 80% of the funding going to the Centers for Disease Control and nothing going to the Administration on Aging.

*Proven, cost-effective prevention and wellness programs are available through the Administration on Aging on a very limited basis for seniors in need. These programs are having a positive impact on Hawaiians, but the need greatly exceeds current resources.

*These programs reduce Medicare spending, help seniors continue to work, provide widely accessible jobs, and reach disadvantaged and at-risk minority populations.

*I urge Senator Inouye to support an amendment to the stimulus package to provide $200 million for Administration on Aging evidence-based prevention and wellness programs.


Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Task Force meeting - Feb 13

The Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Task Force will meet Friday, February 13, 2009 at 11:30am at the Queen Liliuokalani Children's Center at 1300 Halona Street. The public is welcome.

The Task Force was established by Act 220, 2008 to focus on the needs and issues of grandparents raising grandchildren. The Task Force plans to discuss the following: review recommendations from the Task Force's December 2008 Report to the Legislature; review letter to Dept. of Health about clinics and the Caregiver's Consent for Minor's Healthcare and affidavit; and review letter to Dept. of Education about policies requiring consent from parents who are inaccessible.

Persons who wish to submit testimony or have questions are asked to contact Senator Les Ihara's office at 586-6250. A copy of the hearing notice may be found at:

Thursday, January 29, 2009

2/09 - The Case Against Legalized Gambling in Hawaii

Presented by Hawaii Coalition Against Legalized Gambling.

Monday, February 9, 2009, 11:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.

Harris United Methodist Church, Miyama Hall, 20 South Vineyard Blvd at Nuuanu Ave. Plenty of free parking.

Admission is free. Lunch, pizza, salad, desert $5 donation.

Co-sponsored by Interfaith Alliance Hawaii, Kokua Council, Interfaith Open Table, Church and Society Hawaii District UMC and Others. (Download flyer here.)

John W. KindtJohn W. Kindt is a Professor of Business and Legal Policy in the Department of Business Administration, University of Illinois. After receiving a B.A. in business from the College of William and Mary in 1972, Professor Kindt earned several graduate degrees in law and business, specifically, J.D., 1976, and MBA, 1977, from the University of Georgia; LL.M., 1978, and SJD, 1981, from the University of Virginia. During the 1970s, Professor Kindt was employed in several state and federal government positions. He also served as a senior fellow at the London School of Economics.

Professor Kindt’s research has resulted in over 70 academic articles and studies in the areas of the economic impacts of decriminalized gambling, antitrust law, tax law, commercial law, environmental law, and public and private international law. For 20 years his specialty research has been focused on the societal, business, and economic impacts of decriminalizing gambling activities--particularly gambling's destabilization of international financial institutions and criminal justice systems, resulting in increased addicted gamblers, bankruptcies, and crime.  Another specialty area in international law involves the corporate development of ocean resources. Professor Kindt’s teaching has been cited several times as outstanding.

For more information, Sam Cox 779-3606, Bob Nakata 295-1316 or Jim Brooking 337-1464

Monday, January 26, 2009

January 26 Meeting: Waitlisted patient issues, a symptom of our broken healthcare system

Coral Andrews

Click here to listen.

Speaker: Coral Andrews, Vice President, Healthcare Association of Hawaii

Notes on the meeting:

“The Health Care System is constipated”, declared Andrews. Hawaii’s healthcare system is broken. Symptoms of this broken system are waitlisted patients. These are patients deemed medically ready for discharge and no longer in need of acute care services but who cannot be discharged (due to various barriers) and therefore must remain in the higher cost hospital setting.

A Waitlist Task Force, working under the direction of the Healthcare Association of Hawaii’s (HAH) Board of Directors, studied the waitlist issue and identified four barrier categories that contribute to the waitlisted problem. They are: reimbursement, capacity, regulatory/government and workforce. With waiting lists for any vacancy, nursing homes will select those whose reimbursement is assured, who present no behavior problems, and who require no special treatment for special needs. Especially out of luck because staff has no behavior management training or homes have not the special equipment for the care, are geriatric patients and younger, usually male long-term care patients. Recommendations aimed at addressing these barrier categories are summarized in the 2008 and 2009 Reports to the Legislature. HAH has introduced and will support legislative bills that address these barriers. The full report can be found at .

Note on these podcasts: If you subscribe to the RSS feed at the right of this page you will automatically receive downloads of the audio programs and any handouts we post on the website. There are many RSS newsreaders that handle "enclosure" that you can use, and several programs that will download just the podcasts.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Joint Legislative Committee on Aging in Place - report now online

Senator Les Ihara, Jr. and Representative Marilyn B. Lee, Co-Chairs of the Joint Legislative Committee on Aging in Place, announce that the committee's recent report to the legislature is now available online at: Questions may be referred to Senator Ihara's office at 586-6250 or Representative Lee's office at 586-9460.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

January 26 Program: Waitlisted patient issues, a sympton of our broken healthcare system

11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Miyama Main Hall, Harris United Methodist Church
Nuuanu Ave. and South Vineyard Blvd.

Ample parking - driveway off Nuuanu Ave.


11:30 Luncheon: Various Subway Sandwiches, Salad, Drinks, Dessert by Eloise, $5.00 Donation

11:45 Welcome: Introductions and Remarks, Larry Geller, President

12:00 Program: Coral Andrews, Vice President, Healthcare Association of Hawaii, “WAITLISTED PATIENT ISSUES, A SYMPTOM OF OUR BROKEN HEALTH CARE SYSTEM.” Andrew’s areas of responsibility are Long Term Care, Home Care, Hospice, and Advocacy.

12:30 Preparing for the 2009 Legislature: Be Part of the Solution!

12:50 Annual Meeting, Election of Officers

1: 00 Adjourn and Announcements

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Task Force meeting - January 9

The Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Task Force will meet Friday, January 9, 2009 at 11:30am in state capitol conference room 229 to discuss among other things: application of the Caregivers' Consent for Minor's Healthcare and affidavit, and GRGs without legal status communicating and working with the Department of Education on education issues for their grandchildren. The public is welcome.

Interested persons may contact Senator Les Ihara Jr.'s office at 586-6250 for more information or assistance.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Kupuna Caucus meeting - January 9

Happy 2009!

The Kupuna Caucus will meet Friday, January 9, 2009 at 2:00pm in state capitol room 229 to review the 2009 Kupuna Caucus Legislative Package.

The public is welcome.

For more information, please contact Senator Suzanne Chun Oakland's committee clerk at 586-6130. Mahalo.

Kokua Council 2009 Legislative Priorities available for download

Please click here for a copy of Kokua Council’s legislative priorities. The same document is available from the box on the right side of this website.

These priorities were developed from the input we received during the October 20, 2008 5th Annual Community Forum. The Kokua Council board reviewed all of the forms and suggestions and came up with this priority list.

With the economy still in trouble, this promises to be a difficult legislative session. We hope for your support, and ask you to renew your Kokua Council membership or upgrade to Life Membership. A form is in each newsletter, or click here for a form you can print.