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  Agenda Item # 9.A.       
Alamo Senior Advisory Committee
Meeting Date: 03/08/2018  
Benefits Counseling Report

TITLE:
Benefits Counseling Report
PROGRAM REPORT:

Information Referral, Access and Intake and Benefits Counseling
Program Report
March 8th, 2018

As of February 1st, AACOG realigned information referral, access and intake and benefits counseling for the service area that includes the counties outside of Bexar.    In order to achieve an improved alignment within AACOG’s  Area Agencies on Aging, these services are now consolidated into regional units.
Specifically,

1. The Alamo Service Connection (ASC) is the primary unit responsible for the provision of information and referral services.    ASC call center agents make referrals to partners and community based organizations both inside and outside of AACOG.   They can be reached at 866-231-4922.    
2. AACOG Area Agencies on Aging will receive referrals from the ASC through two service units; Area Agency Benefits Counseling and Area Agency Care Coordination.    Public access to the rural benefits counselors is still available by calling 210-362-5561 or 1-800-252-9240.  
3. Rural Benefits Counselors Elia Pardo, Margarita Milnes and Daniel Goetz report to Benefits Coordinator Terry Banda.    Together, the rural and Bexar County Benefits Counselors will serve all counties in the AACOG region.

The realignment of the service units will not adversely affect the focus, volume or quality of services.   With the ASC dedicated to the provision of information and referrals, the Benefits Counselors will be allowed to focus on-

1. Outreach
2. One on one counseling
3. Advocacy and appeals

Priority will still be given to individuals and families as identified in the Older Americans Act:  Older individuals (with particular attention to low-income older individuals, including low-income minority older individuals, older individuals with limited English proficiency, and older individuals residing in rural areas). Older Americans Act of 1965 PL 89-73 §203 ¶ (a)(3)(A)

Advantages:
1. Provision of services to the priority populations with local efforts in cooperation with other community based organizations will
       continue.   Service delivery will be managed on a regional basis.  
2. Improved alignment of income streams, budgets, authorizations and service deliveries for the region. 
3. Improved over all control to achieve goals through budgeted resources.    
4. Greater depth to benefits counseling team; effective backup to cover outreach events, staff absences and for the provision of
      assistance to those individuals who walk into the AACOG offices.  
5. A renewed focus on the delivery of defined program services on a targeted basis will position the agency for the provision of 
      new services that will generate revenue.  

 

Alamo Service Connection (ASC) an Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC)

The mission for the ADRCs is to serve as a highly visible, trusted resource for assistance with access to the full range of community-based Long Term Support and Service (LTSS) options via a “no wrong door” model for all individuals regardless of age, income and disability.   The ASC can be reached at 855-937-2372.    

Summary Report of ASC and Rural Counties
Calls received by County:

 
  Nov'17 Dec'17 Jan'18 Tot. Avg.
Atascosa 44 43 42 129 43
Bandera 11 12 15 38 13
Comal 61 40 41 142 47
Frio 7 4 10 21 7
Gillespie 8 4 11 23 8
Guadalupe 59 53 76 188 63
Karnes 6 5 15 26 9
Kendall 20 15 24 59 20
Kerr 29 27 36 92 31
McMullen 0 0 0 0 0
Medina 38 25 18 81 27
Wilson 24 19 23 66 22
           
Total 307 247 311 865 288


 
CONTACT INFORMATION:
Daniel Goetz, Benefits Counselor
dgoetz@aacog.com or 210.362.5567   

Terry Banda, Benefits Counseling Coordinator
TBanda@accog.com or 210.918.1281

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