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The Older Iowans Legislature is a statewide non-partisan, non-profit volunteer organization. Its members advocate for state legislators and the Governor to sign legislation that will result in an improved “Quality of Life for Older Iowans”.

The Older Iowans Legislature places special emphasis on the frail elderly; those citizens who have contributed much to our society, but have exhausted their resources and in need of assistance to lead meaningful lives.

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Older Iowans Legislature Asks Older Iowans to Contact Legislators:
It’s Time to Prepare for Future

Go to a grocery store or any restaurant in Iowa and you will see we have a large senior population. In fact, 15.6 percent of Iowa’s population is 65 or older and that percentage is expected to increase to 20.5 percent by 2030. The increase in the senior population has created situations unique to them that the Iowa Legislature needs to address.  That is why the Older Iowans Legislature (OIL), a non-profit, non-partisan, volunteer organization has proposed specific measures to the Iowa Legislature that will better meet the challenges caused by the “greying” of our population.

The OIL membership met in the Iowa House Chamber last fall and adopted three bills.

OIL asks the legislature to adequately fund LifeLong Links™, administered by the six Area Agencies on Aging located strategically throughout Iowa, and the Office of Substitute Decision Maker and Long Term Ombudsman programs, administered by the Iowa Department on Aging. All three programs are seeing their workloads increase by the surge in our aging population and by new tasks assigned to them by the Iowa Legislature.   OIL also asks the legislature to address the problem of elder abuse. 

The third bill that OIL adopted was The Care Act which is supported by a coalition of senior advocacy groups.  This proposal allows for patients to designate a person who will provide their care in the home setting. The bill requires hospitals to notify the caregiver when the patient is to be discharged to another facility or back home. The bill requires the hospital to discuss with the caregiver the patient’s care needs at home and to provide explanation and instruction on medical task that the caregiver will perform.  The medical task includes medication management, injections, wound care and transfers as well as the normal living and hygiene needs.

Statistics reveal that 317,000 Iowans currently care for an aging parent or loved one.  A study that AARP has done reveals that 50 percent of these caregivers report that they did not receive adequate information or demonstrations to adequately provide the needed care.  The AARP survey also reveals that 84 percent of likely Iowa voters aged 45 or older support the ideas offered in The Care Act.

Oil reminds legislators that it is their responsibility to adopt legislation that helps Iowans prepare for the future. The listed proposals will be of benefit to Iowa’s seniors and are fiscally responsible as it cost much less to have seniors living independently as compared to living in an institutional environment.

The Older Iowans Legislature asks Iowa seniors to talk to their representatives and senators and urge passage of these important measures.



The Older Iowans Legislature Priority Bills to be submitted to the 2016 session of the Iowa General Assembly include:

  • OIL Bill 15-01: A bill for actions to expand the current scope of options to deal with elder abuse in Iowa.
    • Establish a task force to address the lack of appropriate facilities for residents who are sexually aggressive or combative
    • Establish a multidisciplinary approach to address the education, prevention, detection, reporting, data collection, and investigation of elder abuse
    • Establish tax credit for caregivers
    • Utilize LifeLong Links (the Aging and Disability Resource Centers) as the depository from all entities dealing with elder abuse
  • OIL Bill 15-02: A bill as a letter of recommendation from the Older Iowans Legislature to the Iowa General Assembly in support of the FY 17 Budgets for the Long-Term Care Ombudsman program, the Office of the Substitute Decision Maker, and Iowa’s Aging and Disability Resource Center.
    • Approval by the Iowa General Assembly of $2,300,000 for the maintenance of and adequate staffing of LifeLong Links coordinated by the Iowa Area Agencies on Aging who have been appointed to be Iowa’s Aging and Disability Resource Center.
    • Approval of the Iowa Department on Aging’s FY 17 Budget and specifically $325.000 for the Office of the Substitute Decision Maker.
    • Approval of the Office of the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman (OLSTCO) FY 17 Budget and specifically for long-term care ombudsmen, volunteer program coordinators, and Medicaid managed care ombudsmen.
  • OIL Bill 15-03: A bill for act relating to the designation of a caregiver relating to a patient’s stay at a hospital. (Note: OIL Bill 15-03 is the same as Senate File 465.)
    • The designation of a caregiver relative to an inpatient admission of a patient to a hospital to provide after-care assistance to the patient upon discharge of the patient to the patient’s residence.
    • Requires a hospital to provide each patient an opportunity to designate at least one caregiver following the patient’s entry into a hospital, and prior to the patient’s discharge or transfer to another hospital or facility.
    • Requires a hospital to notify the patient’s caregiver of the patient’s discharge or transfer to another hospital or facility as soon as possible upon issuance of a discharge or transfer order by the patient’s attending physician.
    • As soon as possible and prior to a patient’s discharge from a hospital, the hospital is required to consult with the caregiver along with the patient regarding the caregiver’s capabilities and limitations and issue a discharge plan that describes the patient’s after-care assistance needs at the patient’s residence.
    • The bill directs the department of inspections and appeals to adopt rules, in cooperation with the department of public health, to administer the bill.

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