Congress Votes to Enact the National Family Caregiver Support Program
Last week, the U.S. Senate voted unanimously (94-0) to reauthorize the federal Older Americans Act. The House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed the legislation by a vote of 405 to 2. President Clinton is expected to sign the bill into law.
A key piece of the final legislation includes the establishment of the National Family Caregiver Support Program, modeled in part on California's successful and innovative Caregiver Resource Centers.
President Clinton has stated that " the National Family Caregiver Support Program is a key Administration priority designed to provide respite care and other supportive services to help hundreds of thousands of families who are struggling to care for their loved ones who are ill or disabled."
Family Caregiver Alliance applauds this much-needed legislation. "This news is especially welcome," said FCA Executive Director Kathleen Kelly, "as we celebrate National Family Caregivers Month (in November). The enactment of this historic national program is a great victory for older persons and their families!"
Family Caregiver Alliance, founded in 1977, was the first community-based organization in the country to respond to the needs of caregivers of loved ones suffering from such debilitating conditions as Alzheimer's disease, stroke, Parkinson's disease, traumatic brain injury and other disorders. Family Caregiver Alliance serves as a public voice for caregivers, providing the assistance they need and deserve, and championing their cause through education, services, research and advocacy. For more information, visit the award-winning FCA website at http://www.caregiver.org.
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