Bill calls for better coordination of seniors' housing needs
An interagency council that would better coordinate seniors housing programs and related services is part of a bill introduced Tuesday by Sen. Paul Sarbanes (D-MD).
The measure would establish the "Interagency Council on meeting the housing and service needs of seniors." Council members would review all federal programs and services designed to help seniors with their housing needs. Sarbanes said the many programs and services that exist are currently "fragmented across many government agencies, with little coordination."
Long-term care providers, who have continually called for a coordinated policy initiative, hailed the bill's introduction.
The council would identify gaps in services, recommend ways to avert duplication and identify best practices. Council members' scrutiny would span federal, state and local programs.
The council would have representatives of the following agencies: Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Health and Human Services (HHS), Transportation, Agriculture, Treasury, Labor, Veterans Affairs, as well as the commissioner of the Social Security Administration, the administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and the head of the Administration on Aging.