Eldercare Locator is a public services of the U.S. Administration on Aging and connects caregivers and older adults to the types of community resources mentioned on this page.
The Older Americans Act
The Older Americans Act (OAA) is federal legislation that authorizes the funding of important services for seniors, like meals, job training, senior centers, health promotion, benefits enrollment, caregiver support, and transportation. The Administration on Aging was created through the Older Americans Act and serves as the national center for diverse issues affecting older individuals. It authorizes 56 state agencies on aging, over 600 area agencies on aging, almost 20,000 service providers, and hundreds of tribal organizations that work to fit the community-based services needs of older individuals.
OAA is important for caregivers know about because it provides several helpful programs to support both caregivers and their loved ones. These programs include:
Senior centers are a community focal point. They provide a community senior for socialization and activities as well as a geographical location to connect older adults with OAA services such as meal and nutrition programs, wellness programs, transportation, and public benefits counseling.
Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS)
HCBS includes access to congregate meals, Meals on Wheels, transportation options, healthy aging programs, home modifications, and home health services. To look up these services, visit the Eldercare Locator (1-800-677-1116) and enter your zip code.
Aging and Disability Resource Centers (ADRCs)
ADRCs are located across the country and seek to address the frustrations many older adults, people with disabilities, and family members experience when trying to learn about and access long-term services and supports. ADRCs raise visibility about the full range of available options; provide objective information, advice, counseling, and assistance; empower people to make informed decisions about their long-term services and supports; and help people access public and private programs. To find an ADRC near you, visit the Eldercare Locator (1-800-677-1116) and enter your zip code.
The National Family Caregiver Support Program (NFCSP)
NFCSP provides grants to states and territories to fund services and supports that help family and informal caregivers care for older adults in their homes for as long as possible. NFCSP also provides information to caregivers about available services, assistance to caregivers in gaining access to the services, individual counseling, organization of support groups, caregiver training, respite care, and supplemental services. Go to Eldercare Locator’s Caregiver Corner to locate programs and information for caregivers provided through NFCSP funding.
National Center on Elder Abuse
The center is a resource for families, advocates, and medical, legal, and social service professionals. Their website has information on elder abuse prevention and awareness and provides direct links to state information on reporting, helplines, and hotlines.
Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program
Long-Term Care (LTC) Ombudsman programs work to resolve problems related to the health, safety, welfare, and rights of individuals who live in LTC facilities, such as nursing homes, board and care and assisted living facilities, and other residential care communities. If you have concerns about the quality of care that your loved one is receiving at a residential community, your state LTC Ombudsman is a good resource to contact. OAA requires Ombudsman programs to:
- Identify, investigate, and resolve complaints made by or on behalf of residents.
- Provide information to residents about Long Term Support and Services (LTSS).
- Ensure that residents have regular and timely access to ombudsman services.
- Represent the interests of residents before governmental agencies and seek administrative, legal, and other remedies to protect residents.
- Analyze, comment on, and recommend changes in laws and regulations pertaining to the health, safety, welfare, and rights of residents.
Ombudsman programs are organized by state. You can find your state’s LTC Ombudsman and contact information here.