Helping the Most Elderly Remain Independent
Media Advisory: August 10, 2010
Contact: Amy Berridge, (609) 945-3378
Issue: Since passage of the Older Americans Act (OAA) in 1965, the Administration on Aging (AoA) has strived to help elderly Americans maintain their independence and remain living in their communities. Through its Aging Services Network, AoA provides services to help address the effects of declining physical health and functioning that frail adults experience. Funded under Title III of the OAA, services such as homemaker support, home-delivered meals, transportation services, and case management are available to those age 60 and older, with delivery targeted to the most vulnerable elderly.
An issue brief from Mathematica Policy Research, the first in a series, presents findings from AoA’s National Survey of OAA Program Participants and assesses whether Title III services are reaching adults at higher risk of nursing home entry.
Findings: The study found that, on the basis of common predictors of nursing home entry, Title III participants are at higher risk of entering a nursing home than others in their age group nationally. Because of the survey design, definitive evidence that Title III programs help keep those receiving services from ultimately entering nursing homes is not available, but the study found that the majority of participants believe the services help them remain in their homes.
Quote: “As the elderly population in the United States increases and there is a growing emphasis on community living, identifying services that allow the elderly to remain in their homes is becoming increasingly important,” says Jody Schimmel, co-author and senior researcher at Mathematica, “Our analysis showed that AoA is reaching some of those most at risk of entering a nursing home, and that clients report that Title III services play an important role in helping them live independently in the community.”
Issue Brief: "Aging in Place: Do Older Americans Act Title III Services Reach Those Most Likely to Enter Nursing Homes?" Helping Vulnerable Seniors Thrive Issue Brief #1, Norma Altshuler and Jody Schimmel, July 2010.
About Mathematica: Mathematica Policy Research, a nonpartisan research firm, provides a full range of research and data collection services, including program evaluation and policy research, survey design and data collection, research assessment and interpretation, and program performance/data management, to improve public well-being. Its clients include federal and state governments, foundations, and private-sector and international organizations. The employee-owned company, with offices in Princeton, N.J., Ann Arbor, Mich., Cambridge, Mass., Chicago, Ill., Oakland, Calif., and Washington, D.C., has conducted some of the most important studies of health care, international, disability, education, family support, employment, nutrition, and early childhood policies and programs.