Monthly Archives: June 2011

States Across the Nation Asking for Compassionate Budget Deliberations

At a time when the nation if facing the largest surge of older adults in its  history, government programs that care for the elderly are being slashed with reckless abandon. As the fate of California’s Adult Day Health Care (ADHC) program is being considered by Governor Jerry Brown this evening, families, caregivers, and advocates are fighting to keep remnants of a program that has kept thousands out of institutions. Our colleagues in Minnesota have put together a brief video that encourages us all to to reevaluate our priorities as a nation.


Member Benefit Updates

We’ve been hard at work listening to members to find out ways that we can help in operational cost cutting.  There are a few new programs you should be aware of.

1) Employee Benefits Aggregate Purchasing Study

The ever skyrocketing costs of employee benefits are no secret and we know that members are not immune to this.  We have partnered with Ascension Benefits to conduct a study to determine if there is a way for collective purchasing to improve transparency, flexibility and pricing stability for our members by increasing your leverage within the group benefits marketplace.  Ascension went through a very thorough review process with the Group Services Board and we’ve heard great success stories from members who have selected them as their benefits provider even prior to the completion of the study.    One Aging Services member who has 130 employees was able to cut their annual benefits costs by $176,000, while offering employees a better plan.  Another member with 80 employees was able to reduce their annual benefit costs by $46,000, while also offering their employees a richer benefit plan.   It’s not too late to participate in the study – for details contact Joe Williams, Lead Consultant, Ascension Benefits at (925) 577-7611.

2) Value First

Aging Services, Leading Age and 24 other Leading Age affiliate state associations joined together to create Value First.  This is a new group purchasing organization that works in partnership with MedAssets to offer members discounts on products and services you use everyday.  There are over 450 relevant contracts accessible to members through Value First, including food, medical/surgical supplies, maintenance supplies/equipment, office supplies, construction equipment and more.  Additionally, Morrison has partnered with Value First to offer a very significant savings program.  Morrison clients who select Value First as their group purchasing organization and renew their contracts with Morrison can receive up to 3 months free in Morrison management fees.  For more information, visit or call Scot Scurlock, Leading Age, Vice President – Value First Savings and Solution Center, (202) 465-4313.

Aging Services is looking to take the savings available through Value First to a new level for stand alone communities.  For information on how to save more as a stand alone, contact Stephanie Doute, Aging Services Director of Membership & Group Services at (916) 469-3364.

And finally, but not at all least important…

3) Property Insurance Group

With the glowing success of the Aging Services Workers Compensation and Liability Insurance programs, we determined that it makes sense to partner with Lewis & Associates once again to provide a purchasing group for property insurance.  This program will not only be structured to provide premium dividend return for high performance, but will also allow some members to access earthquake insurance at very reasonable rates.    We know that insurance is not necessarily one of the most significant financial pressures facing members today, but if we can assist in cost cutting here, it will free up funds to help alleviate some of the other more pressing pinch points.  For information on the Property Insurance program, contact Jim Smallwood, President, Lewis and Associates at (800) 745-3947 or Kevin Veitia, Vice President, Lewis & Associates at the same number.

Is there anything else we can help you with?  I’m always available to discuss individual needs and situations with members to see how we can increase the benefit you receive from your membership.  Feel free to give me a call (916) 469-3364 anytime.

-Stephanie Doute,  Director of Membership & Group Services

Governor Vetoes Legislative Democrat’s Budget