You Could Be a Federal Long-Term Care Policy Advisor

Tom Price will make the appointments

HHS Secretary Tom Price (Photo: House) HHS Secretary Tom Price (Photo: House)

The Trump administration now has a chance to realign an official government panel that helps shape the U.S. strategy for fighting Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia.

The terms of seven of the 22 members of the federal Advisory Council on Alzheimer's Research, Care and Services end Sept. 30.

Tom Price, the secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, will be in charge of choosing the new council members. A copy of the council opening announcement is located here.

(Related: Add Caregiver Status to Health Records, Alzheimer's Panel Says)

President Barack Obama signed S. 3036, the bill that created the National Alzheimer's Project Act, in 2011. Kathleen Sebelius, Obama's first HHS secretary, chose the members of the first NAPA advisory council. The council is supposed to help the country find a way to cure or prevent dementia, and to improve efforts to support people affected by dementia while dementia still exists.

Ten of the council members are supposed to come from federal agencies, such as the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

Twelve are supposed to come from different sectors outside the federal government. Nominees could be health care providers, representatives from state health departments, researchers with dementia-related expertise, voluntary health association members, and dementia patient advocates. At least one of the advocates is supposed to be an individual living with dementia.

The individual living with dementia serves a two-year term. The other non-federal members serve four-year terms.

The council has occasionally talked in the past about efforts to support caregivers, to help individuals prepare for future long-term care needs, and to help families pay for known long-term care needs. In the past, insurance companies, insurance agents and financial planners from outside the insurance industry have not played a prominent role in council activities.

Price could change that. In the past, Price had a good relationship with the insurance community. He helped get Congress to classify indexed annuities as state-regulated insurance products, rather than federally regulated securities.

--- Read David Hyde Pierce: U.S. Needs Caregiver Support Yardstick on ThinkAdvisor.

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