Western Reserve Area Agency on Aging (WRAAA) is a private non-profit corporation, organized and designated by the State of Ohio to be the planning, coordinating and administrative agency for federal and state aging programs in Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Lorain and Medina Counties. It is one of twelve Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) in the state organized together with local service provider organizations and the Ohio Department of Aging (ODA) to form the state's public aging services network. The network works together to develop systems of long-term services and supports (LTSS); and to create opportunities for older Ohioan's to receive them and to age successfully in their own homes and communities. The Agency is governed by a 21-member Board of Trustees and advised by a Five-County Advisory Council. In 2013, WRAAA employed close to 230 employees and had an operating budget of approximately $135 million.
Operating under the legislative authority of the federal Older American's Act (OAA), the WRAAA is responsible for a wide range of activities in support of older adults. Its major responsibilities are to:
Serve as an effective and visible advocate and focal point for the approximately 440,000 older adults, aged 60+ within its five county planning and service area;
Identify the needs and concerns of older adults and create plans for collaboratively addressing the needs through systems of home and community-based services (HCBS) and other interventions which enable older adults to maintain their independence and dignity; and,
Administer a wide variety of federal, state, local and private funds used to provide person-centered HCBS, care management and other supports and opportunities for older adults. WRAAA is the local administrative agency for the federal OAA and several state aging programs including: PASSPORT and Assisted Living Medicaid home and community-based waiver programs; an Aging and Disability Resource Network (ADRN), which assists families in accessing long-term services and supports (LTSS); and Universal Pre-Admission Screening of nursing home applicants.
In its OAA and Medicaid Waiver programs, WRAAA regulates service provision largely through contracts with local service providers. The Agency contracted with over 200 organizations in 2012 to provide 30 different services to address the needs of the community's older population. The Agency also monitors service providers to ensure services are delivered in an efficient and effective manner. WRAAA supportive services fall into four general categories: (1) access services; (2) community-based services; (3) in-home services; and (4) services to residents in facilities providing long-term care. Priority in service provision is given to those older adults who are socially and economically disadvantaged.
Under its OAA Program, the Agency funds and coordinates a regional network of multi-purpose senior centers and specialized service providers to deliver needed HCBS which include: adult day care; meals; information, referral & assistance escort; transportation; homemaker; chore; personal care; legal; long term care ombudsman; minor home repairs; health promotion and disease prevention; protective; benefit enrollment assistance; and options counseling. The Agency also provides support to informal caregivers under the OAA funded Family Caregiver Support Program.
Through its PASSPORT Program, the Agency provides screening, assessment, care management, and home care services to frail and impaired older persons who are Medicaid eligible and qualify for a nursing home level of care. In August of 2013 the Agency was serving approximately 5,900 PASSPORT and 700 assisted living clients. The Agency has also been providing assessment and care coordination services on a contractual basis to managed care organizations (MCOs) that are under contract with the state to manage other Medicaid Programs. This includes a contract with CareSource to provide care management services to physically disabled persons under the OHIO Home Care and Transitions Waivers. The work with MCOs will expand as WRAAA contracts with three MCOs to coordinate HCBS for dually eligibles consumers in the state's "My Care Ohio" Program scheduled to start in the spring of 2014.
The Agency is also involved in a number of special projects created in response to identified needs and opportunities. Those projects include helping LTC consumers better transition between care settings and empowering them to assume more responsibility for their health and wellness through prevention and disease self-management; and working with the VA to assist veterans with dementia. – less–ZoomInfo