- Area Agency on Aging (AAACAP)
- Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC)
- ADRC FAQs
- Volunteer Options
- Medicare Open Enrollment
- Striking A Balance
AAACAP provides services to support and advocate for the health, safety and well-being of older adults in CAPCOG 10-county region — Bastrop, Blanco, Burnet, Caldwell, Fayette, Hays, Lee, Llano, Travis and Williamson counties.
Since 1982, it has provided services that help meet your needs or the needs of someone you care for. AAACAP directly provides older adults and their caregivers through its Access and Assistance program, Benefits Counseling, Long-term care and Assisted Living Facilities Ombudsman services, Care Coordination and Information, Referral and Assistance services. AAACAP provides services to caregivers under the National Family Caregiver Support Program. It also contracts with other agencies to ensure the availability of services such as transportation, nutrition, homemaker and senior center operations.
Contact the Area Agency on Aging
Aging Services Information, Referrals, and Assistance
Trained staff is available to contact information for referral agencies or outside service providers to further assist you. AAACAP is staffed with bilingual (Spanish) personnel.
AAACAP is funded in part by Texas Health and Human Services, its services are provided without cost to residents throughout the 10-county CAPCOG region.
Regional Older Adult Planning
AAACAP plans, develops and provides a coordinated system of services designed to promote independence for persons 60 years of age and older with a primary focus on frail, rural and low-income minority individuals. This mission is mandated through the Older American’s Act of 1965, as amended (OAA), and supported by Texas Health and Human Services.
The Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) of the Capital Area is a single access point to long-term services and support program benefits for older adults, those with disabilities and their caregivers. With a network of federal, state, and local governments and nonprofit organizations, the resource center supplies older and disabled residents the single best resource for discovering information about services and benefits they need.
Using the no-wrong-door approach, the resource center assists consumers in accessing a variety of services and benefit programs by being a single point of contact. Services can range from Medicare application assistance to locating accessible housing resources in the resident’s community. The ADRC inquires about a person’s needs and then refers the appropriate organization to the consumer instead of referring the consumer to the appropriate organizations. This approach streamlines the process for people seeking information. It also prevents the consumer from retelling their story multiple times to discover what benefits will meet their entire needs. Instead, every person, who seeks the ADRC’s assistance, shares their story once with the center before the center connects the best benefit resources or service options to the consumer. The ADRC serves individuals in CAPCOG’s ten-county region: Bastrop, Blanco, Burnett, Caldwell, Fayette, Hays, Lee, Llano, Travis and Williamson counties.
Contact the ADRC
Housing Navigation (Housing Support)
The ADRC of the Capital Area is committed to supporting accessible and affordable housing in the Capital Area by working with nonprofit, government and for-profit entities to increase consumer access housing.
Partnered Financial Support Programs
Adults older than 60, persons with disabilities and caregivers may be eligible for the following ADRC financial support programs:
Lifespan Respite Grant Program: It’s time for a Break
Caring for a loved one can take a lot out of someone mentally and physically. Everyone needs time to study, buy groceries, or just be alone. The Lifespan Respite Grant Program assists with off-setting the cost of receiving respite care for caregivers who meet the programs qualifications and if funding is available.
The types of care offered through the Life Respite Grant Program include:
- In-home — provided by home care agencies
- Center-based — adult or child day-care facilities and services
- Community Access — individual or group activities
- Out of home — camps
Program Qualifications include:
- An unpaid family caregiver
- Difficulty accessing respite care
- NOT enrolled in another government/non-profit respite or Medicaid waiver program
- Care receiver, of any age, with special needs, a disability or a chronic condition.
Contact the email@example.com or call 855-937-2372 for more information.
Austin Energy Plus 1 Program
A partnership between the City of Austin and CAPCOG, operating at the ADRC, has made it possible for the ADRC to help provide income support for Austin utility customers. This program provides emergency financial aid to customers who are having a temporary problem paying their utility bills if they meet the programs’ criteria.
There are many reasons older adults, people with disabilities, and their caregivers can fall behind on utility payments such as suddenly paying for in-home care or the unexpected cost of a hospital visit caused by a fall.
The program’s criteria includes:
- Austin utility customer
- Client assistance is for residential accounts only (home of residence)
- Plus 1 funds cannot be used for utility deposits
- Persons age 60 or older
- Primary caregiver for an adult 60 years of age or older
- Primary caregiver for an individual of any age with a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s or disease-related dementia
- Non-parental caregiver, age 55 or older, for an adult with severe disabilities
- Kinship – Grandparents or other non-parent relatives age 55 or older with formal or informal custody of a relative child age 18 years or younger
- Older relatives, age 60 or older providing care to adults, ages 18-59 with disabilities
- Medicare-eligible persons
- Persons of any age with a disability
- Caregivers for persons of any age with a disability
For residents not living in Austin, there is a chance the ADRC can still help through a similar AAACAP program.
Contact the firstname.lastname@example.org or call 855-937-2372 for more information.
The ADRC assists residents living in the 10-county capital region with accessing information about long-term services and supports, and public benefit programs offered to older Americans, the disabled, and their caregivers. It lessens the burden of connecting a resident with the information they need through its information, referral and assistance services, or resource navigators. The following FAQ can help residents better understand how the ADRC can help them.
Q: How does the ADRC provide help?
A: Resource navigators provide extensive and ongoing resource options for older Americans (those 60 years old or older), the disabled and their caregivers. Navigators provide help over the phone and in person. They follow the consumer through the ADRC services and are extremely beneficial to people who have multiple needs and who may need help from various resources and agencies. Navigators work to connect consumers as quickly and easily as possible to the resources they need. Navigators also work to ensure consumers can make informed decisions and have streamlined access to long-term services and support agencies.
Q: Can the ADRC help apply for disability benefits or long-term care?
A: Yes. Because the ADRC works with a number of organizations, it can either help people apply for benefits or direct an organization, such as the Area Agency on Aging of the Capital Area, to the person seeking the benefits.
Q: Does the ADRC offer help for family members?
A: Yes. Family caregiver support also is part of the ADRC’s mission. Taking care of loved ones may seem overwhelming at times, and the resource center works to alleviate such stress by referring the appropriate partner agencies to the consumers.
Q: Who can use the ADRC?
A: The ADRC offers assistance to older Americans, children and adults with disabilities, and people caring for those with disabilities. The ADRC serves people living within Bastrop, Blanco, Burnet, Caldwell, Fayette, Hays, Lee, Llano, Travis and Williamson counties.
Q: What is the best way to contact the ADRC?
A: Consumers can contact the resource center by phone, email, or in person. They should use which ever method they are most comfortable. The center is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, except on holidays. Walk-ins are accepted, but appointments are strongly suggested. Consumers can meet with a resource center navigator in person at 6800 Burleson Road, Building 310, Suite 165, Austin, Texas 78744. They can also call the ADRC at 855-937-2372 or email the center at ADRCCAP@capcog.org.
Q: When is the best time to contact the ADRC?
A: Consumers can contact a resource center navigator during normal business hours, but a phone line is always available to accept messages after business hours. Emails also are received by the center after business hours. A resource center navigator will promptly respond to messages and emails during the next business day. The ADRC wants to help consumers navigate through long-term support services and benefits regardless of the circumstances or challenges a consumer is facing. Consumers are welcome to contact the center anytime they have questions or concerns.
Q: Does the ADRC tell me what to do?
A: No. Consumers make their own choices. The ADRC does not and cannot tell a consumer what to do. It offers information and resources to the consumer or caregiver so they can make their own choices about the support services they may require.
Q: Can I call even if I am the one not receiving support services or benefits?
A: Yes, family and friends often are the caregivers. Regardless, if you are a caregiver or not, the ADRC accepts calls from people seeking information to support their loved ones.
Q: Does the ADRC need my name?
A: No. The resource center does not require a consumer’s name. However, providing a name would be helpful for the ADRC navigator to return their call, make an appropriate referral on behalf of the caller, and follow up to ensure the correct long-term support services and benefits fit their needs.
Q: How long do ADRC services last?
A: The ADRC is not the service provider. Durations of services and benefits are dictated by the various organizations the consumer elects to use after the resource center connects them with those resources.
Long-term Care Ombudsman Program
The AAACAP Long-term Care Ombudsman Program provides advocacy and friendly support for people living in nursing or assisted-living facilities. Ombudsmen investigate complaints, report findings and help achieve resolution. Program staff are trained to develop positive relationships with residents and facility staff to help with problem-solving.
How does an ombudsman work?
Supporting residents and families in resolving problems or differences with facility staff includes defining concerns, explaining rights and identifying possible courses of action. An ombudsman can help resolve the problem in most cases, but complaints involving serious abuse or neglect are referred to the appropriate agency. In all situations, confidentiality is maintained and no information is released without permission of the resident or legal guardian. An ombudsman is a good source of information about selecting a long-term care facility, understanding eligibility criteria, and identifying other services for older adults. State and regional ombudsman programs work cooperatively with other advocacy organizations. Plus, staff routinely serve on boards and committees of other organizations and actively advocate for policies to promote quality of care.
Contacts & Resources
To speak with a local ombudsman or learn about volunteering as an advocate, call 512-916-6054 or toll free 800-252-2412.
The following are resources for those living in nursing homes and assisted living facilities, their families or volunteer ombudsmen.
- Compare providers through the Texas Health and Human Services website.
- Compare nursing homes through Medicare.gov
- Find other ombudsman programs in Texas
Links to other web sites are for information only and are not an endorsement or recommendation.
- The National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care
- Consumer Voice Family Member Fact Sheets
Selecting a Nursing Home, Quality Care, Residents Rights, Family Involvement
- A Consumer Guide to Choosing a Nursing Home
Provided by Consumer Voice
- Office of the State Long-term Care Ombudsman, Health and Human Services
Some scammers and fraudsters especially target seniors, but consumers can help fight back. The U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging has launched a toll-free hotline for seniors, their loved ones or anyone with information to report suspected fraud and get help. The committee’s investigation team has tackled crimes from investment scams, identity theft and lottery schemes to Medicare and Social Security fraud and more.
Call 855-303-9470 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. EST weekdays to reach an investigator.
The following is a list of organizations, services, and documents that older adults, those with disabilities and their caregivers may find helpful.
- Directory of Texas Area Agencies on Aging
- CAPCOG Area Agency on Aging 2017-19 Area Plan
- Benefits checkup on eligibility for assistance programs
- Nationwide area agency on aging locator
- Texas Health and Human Services
- Texas Veterans Portal
- National Council for Aging Care
- National Council of Aging and GreenPath finance counseling
- National Resource Center on LGBT Aging
- Area Agency on Aging of the Capital Area brochure
- United States Department of Justice, Elder Justice
- State of Texas Emergency Assistance Registry
Benefits Counseling Resources
- Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)
- U.S. Social Security Administration
- Texas Health and Human Services
- The Texas Department of Insurance
- The Texas Legal Services Center
- CMS Guide to Consumer Mailings from CMS, Social Security and Plans
Caregiver Support Resources
- U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission Home Safety Checklist for older adults
- U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission other safety guides.
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs caregiver support
- CAPCOG Area Agency on Aging Caregiver Support Program brochure
Health and Wellness Resources
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on preventing falls among older adults
- Mayo Clinic on healthy aging
- National Council on Aging Center for Healthy Aging
- Find and Compare Nursing Homes and Assisted Living Homes
- Nursing Homes Locations – Capital Area Map
- Assisted Living Homes Locations – Capital Area Map
- Resident Rights and Provider Rights
- Financial and Legal Support for Nursing Home Care
- Veterans Homes and Benefits Service
Information and Referral Resources
- Call 512-916-6062 or 888-622-9111, ext 6062 for assistance from CAPCOG Area Agency on Aging’s Information & Referral specialist.
- Call 855-937-2372 to reach the Aging and Disability Resource Center of the Capital Area.
- Call 2-1-1 for United Way for Greater Austin’s area-wide information and referral service, available 24 hours a day. On cellphones, call 512-973-9203, and choose option 2. Rotary phones, call 866-294-4957.
Texas Silver-Haired Legislature
The Texas Silver-Haired Legislature (TSHL) is comprised of representatives across Texas who are 60 years of age and older elected by their peers. These legislators become directly involved in the state legislative process, working closely with Texas legislators during each legislative session. Currently, the Capital Area TSHL District, which is the ten-county CAPCOG region, has nine legislative positions available.
|CAPCOG Region TSHL Representatives|
|Michael A. Sandoval|
|Linda H. Parrish||Paul Stempko|
|Carol Peters||Mary Pat Smith|
|Sue Wilson||Susan Merrick|
CAPCOG’s Area Agency on Aging offers diverse volunteer opportunities through its Benefits Counseling, Stress Busting, Falls Prevention and Long-Term Care Ombudsman programs. Find the volunteer opportunity that matches your interests and apply today.
Current Volunteer Opportunities
Video provided by Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
Benefit counselors of the Area Agency on Aging of the Capital Area (AAACAP) are available to assist Medicare beneficiaries in navigating the federal program’s open enrollment process. During the annual open enrollment period, benefit counselors educate seniors about their Medicare options and which options may best suit their needs. While they provide information about Medicare options and the open enrollment process, counselors do not select a senior’s plan for them.
Medicare Open Enrollment starts on Oct. 15 and is when Medicare beneficiaries can make changes to their Medicare coverage. Beneficiaries can do this by joining a new Medicare Advantage plan or by joining a new stand-alone prescription drug plan (PDP). They also can return to Original Medicare with or without a stand-alone Part D plan from a Medicare Advantage plan.
Medicare beneficiaries can contact AAACAP benefit counselor at 512-916-6062 or 888-622-9111 ext. 6062 for assistance.
Medicare beneficiaries should remember the following information while they are deciding on Medicare coverage. 1. Medicare Open Enrollment occurs from Oct. 15 to Dec. 7 every year.
- If they enroll in a plan during Medicare Open Enrollment, their coverage starts Jan. 1.
- In most cases, Medicare Open Enrollment is the only time they can pick a new Medicare Advantage or Medicare Part D plan.
- If they have Medicare Advantage, they also can switch to Original Medicare. To get Medicare drug coverage, they must join a stand-alone Part D plan.
2. Review your current Medicare health and drug coverage.
- If they have Original Medicare, review next year’s Medicare & You Handbook to identify their Medicare costs and benefits for the upcoming year. If they are unsatisfied with their Original Medicare coverage, they can make change to their coverage during the open enrollment period. Coverage changes will take effect Jan. 1 of the next year.
- If they have a Medicare Advantage plan or a stand-alone Part D plan, they should receive an Annual Notice of Change (ANOC) and/or Evidence of Coverage (EOC) from their plan. They should review the notices for any changes in the plan’s costs, benefits and rules for the upcoming year. If they are dissatisfied with any changes, they can make changes to their coverage during open enrollment to be effective Jan. 1.
- Beneficiaries who are satisfied with their Medicare coverage should review other Medicare options in their area to see if other options better suit their needs. Another plan in their area may offer better health and/or drug coverage at a more affordable price. Research shows people with Medicare prescription drug coverage (Part D) could lower their costs by shopping among plans each year.
3. Help is out there.
- Call the Area Agency on Aging at 1-888-622-9111 or 512-916-6062.
- Visit Medicare.gov and use the Plan Finder to search or review available plans.
4. Understand the difference between the Medicare Open Enrollment Period and Open Enrollment for the Health Insurance Marketplaces.
- The Health Insurance Marketplaces will hold open enrollment for uninsured or underinsured Americans. The Marketplaces are not meant for people with Medicare. People with Medicare should not use this open enrollment period to purchase or change their health care.
- People with Medicare should continue to use the Medicare Open Enrollment Period to review and make changes to their health coverage.
Newly Medicare eligible seniors
For those who will be newly Medicare eligible due to turning 65, they should do their research early especially if you are still employed at that 65.
More Medicare Open Enrollment information
Watch the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services video series
- CMS Plan Finder – Jane’s Reflection (Short)
- CMS Plan Finder – Jane’s Reflection (Extended)
- Medicare & You – Medicare Open Enrollment
- Medicare & You – Understanding Medicare Enrollment
- Medicare & You – Understanding Your Medicare Choices
- Medicare & You – Deciding to Sign Up for Medicare Part B
- Medicare & You – Different Parts of Medicare
The Striking a Balance Caregiver Conference brings together local resources and national speakers to aid and educate family caregivers about their own situations and experiences. Striking a Balance is for nonprofessional caregivers, who are invited to share their own experiences with their peers during this day of learning from adult caregiving leaders.
18th Annual Striking a Balance Caregiver Conference
Times & Location 8:30 a.m.- 2 p.m., Aug. 24, 2019 8 a.m. onsite registration Doubletree by Hilton Austin 6505 North Interstate Highway 35 Austin, Texas 78752
Keynote Speaker — Dr. Eboni Green, Ph.D. in Human Services
Green is the President and CEO of Caregiver Support Services, a nonprofit that specializes in supporting family and professional caregivers through direct training and consulting. Green has extensive experience focused on caregivers’ health and wellness with an emphasis on caregiver stress, burnout, and related family conflicts. She is a faculty member of several universities where she teaches courses such as Health Care Ethics, Leadership in Health Care, and Stress Management and Wellness. In 2002, she became the Nebraska State Representative for the Caregiver Action Network. Green has authored three books – At the Heart of the Matter, Caregiving in the New Millennium, and Reflections from the Soul – and currently writes a monthly article that focuses on self-care among caregivers. She was the resource editor of Take Care, from 2004 to 2006, and has contributed to a number of publications and given presentations throughout the nation that focus on training, assessing and supporting caregivers.
The keynote address will take place over lunch.
This year’s conference will feature a number of breakout sessions on topics related to family caregivers’ needs. Sessions will start at 9 a.m. and take place in multiple rooms of the hotel. Each session will last about an hour and 15 minutes.
|9 a.m.||10:30 a.m||1:15 p.m.|
|Dealing with Grief Eboni Green||Q&A with Eboni Green|
|Combatting Fraud and Scams AARP||Positive Apporach to Care Steve Catoe, Alzheimer’s Texas||Q&A: Positive Approach to Care Steve Catoe, Alzheimer’s Texas|
|Caregiving at Home and Medications Safety Tips Dr. Christy Khoury-Dennis & Mary Duran||Advanced Care Planning Trelisha Brown||Q&A: Advanced Care Planning Trelisha Brown|
Stephen Catoe — C.A.L.M., C.A.D., C.D.P., C.V.W., C.P.A.C.
Catoe began his gerontology career in 1998 earning certifications in gerontology and gerontology cast management. He later became a certified activity director through the National Council of Certified Activity Professionals and began working as memory care director in 2001 after becoming a certified assisted living manager. Catoe has trained with internationally renowned dementia educators. He is certified in the Feil Method of Validation by Naomi Feil and the Validation Institute with The George Institute as well as first person certified as a Positive Approach to Care Consultant, Certified Trainer and Certified P.A.C. Dementia Coach. The Positive Approach to Care is an innovative therapy model created by Teepa Snow for working with people living with dementia.
Dr. Christy Khoury-Dennis
Khoury-Dennis received a bachelor of science in Biology from the University of Texas in Arlington and a Doctorate of Pharmacy from the University of Texas at Austin. She has contracted with the Area Agency on Aging of the Capital Area since 2014 to provide Medication Screening service for older adults in the community. For more than 10 years, Khoury-Dennis has practiced in a variety of pharmacy settings; community, retail and long-term care.
Duran is owner of Cella Bella Senior Services, a non-medical home health agency providing professional, compassionate and quality homecare options for daily living. Duran has background in health care and business with a passion for helping others. She has received awards from the community for outstanding volunteer and humanitarian efforts. Making the decision to open Cella Bella’s Senior Services was inspired by her parents and her desire to provide outstanding care to others.
Last year’s conference
Keynote Speaker – Dr. Barry J. Jacobs Finding Gratitude and Positive Meaning in Family Caregiving
Family caregiving brings strains and gains. The challenge for everyone is to minimize the strains and maximize the gains in order to make caring for a loved one a positive, enriching experience.
Dr. Barry J. Jacobs, Psy.D. will share stories and strategies for finding caregiving’s positive rewards, including personal and spiritual growth, an enhanced sense of purpose, and the gratification of knowing you are making a vital difference in the life of your family. As a clinical psychologist and family therapist, Jacobs is one of the country’s leading thinkers, educators, and writers on family caregiving. As a clinical psychologist and family therapist, he specializes in counseling medical patients and their loved ones on how to cope with serious and chronic medical illnesses. As an educator, Jacobs is the director of behavioral sciences for the Crozer-Keystone Family Medicine Residency Program in Springfield, Penn. and an adjunct faculty member at Temple University School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing and the Institute for Clinical Psychology of Widener University. Jacobs is the national spokesperson on family caregiving for the American Heart Association and a board member of the Collaborative Family Healthcare Association.
Jacobs, who is also a former journalist, writes an advice column for Take Care!, the National Family Caregivers Association newsletter. He is also the editor for the APA journal Families, Systems, & Health’s, In Sickness & Health column. His first book, The Emotional Survival Guide for Caregivers: Looking After Yourself and Your Family While Helping an Aging Parent, shares the knowledge Jacobs gained from personal experiences as a child of family caregivers and in his career. The book helps make sense of the turmoil in caregiving and teaches ways to cope with competing loyalties, role reversals, and the vicissitudes of illness.
The keynote discussion will take place at noon over lunch.
|9 a.m.||10:30 a.m||1:15 p.m.|
|Working Family Caregivers Can Find the Right Balance||Sleep Changes through Aging, Behavioral Approaches to Improve Sleep||Male Caregivers, Working Caregivers, and the Rewards of Caregiving|
|Real Men are Family Caregivers, Too||Nutrition and Aging, Challenges and Solutions||Sleep Changes and Effective Behavioral Approaches|
|I’m a Caregiver, Now What?||Nutrition and Quality of Life|
Working Family Caregivers Can Find the Right Balance
Julia L. Mayer, Psy.D. Working caregivers rarely relax. While at work, they are worried about their loved ones at home. While at home, they feel guilty about their uncompleted work assignments. It is little wonder that 70 percent of working caregivers eventually have to cut back on or quit work altogether. Yet there are strategies for better balancing work and caregiving and finding joy in both. Mayer will offer ideas for sustaining a positive outlook, receiving validation and caring for yourself.
Real Men Are Family Caregivers, Too
Barry J. Jacobs, Psy.D. Our stereotypical image of the family caregiver is the dutiful and devoted daughter. Yet nearly 40 percent of American family caregivers today are men caring for aging parents or disabled spouses. More men are performing medical and nursing tasks with loved ones, as well as feeding, dressing and toileting. Many of them are holding down full-time jobs at the same time. They often feel stressed but keep their feelings to themselves. Jacobs will talk about the special challenges and privileges of being a male caregiver and discuss the particular ways men can best gain support in order to fulfill their caregiving missions.
I’m a Caregiver…Now What?
Lori Hill, CaregiverU Program Associate at AGE of Central Texas People sometimes find themselves in the role of caregiver suddenly or unexpectedly. Usually, there is no orientation or “on-the-job training” for those who care for a family member, friend or neighbor, and they are left to figure things out as they go. Hill will discuss useful information about what to do early in the caregiving journey, the importance of self-care and different options for respite care.
Sleep Changes Through Aging and Behavioral Approaches to Improve Sleep
Dr. Patricia A. Carter, PhD, RN, CNS Carter will lead a talk about how sleep changes for people with dementia and how sleep influences the caregiver’s ability to continue in the role. She will address how the caregiver can manage the sleep-wake of the person with dementia and their own sleep.
Nutrition and Aging Challenges and Solutions
Audrey Bludau Poche, Licensed Dietitian Meeting nutritional needs as individuals age presents a variety of challenges. Poche will present will about the nutrition challenges and provide some practical solutions for caregivers.
Free off-site respite care for older adults will be available by reservation only at AGE’s Austin Adult Day Health Center, 3710 Cedar St., Austin, Texas 78705. To request respite, call AGE of Central Texas at 512-600-9275.
The Area Agency on Aging of the Capital Area and AGE of Central Texas are proud partners in presenting Striking a Balance 2019, the 18th annual conference for family caregivers. The two organizations have partnered for more than a decade to bring resources together that will help caregivers not only provide better care for their loved ones but themselves as well.
AGE of Central Texas obtains sponsorships for the Striking a Balance program.