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The Supreme Court throws out a Trump-era ban on gun bump stocks; a look at how social media algorithms and Shakespearian villains have in common; and states receive federal funding to clean up legacy mine pollution.

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The Supreme Court for now protects access to abortion drug mifepristone, while Senate Republicans block a bill protecting access to in-vitro fertilization. Wisconsin's Supreme Court bans mobile voting sites, and colleges deal with funding cuts as legislatures target diversity programs.

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As summer nears, America's newest and largest international dark sky sanctuary beckons, rural job growth is up, but full recovery remains elusive, rural Americans living in prison towns support a transition, while birth control is more readily available in rural areas.

Event cites VA family caregivers’ work, reviews supports

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Monday, May 20, 2024   

For Older Americans Month, AARP Virginia is hosting an event today about family caregivers.

Virginia caregivers provided $14 billion of unpaid care in 2021.

The roundtable discussion addresses a new Centers for Medicare and Medicaid regulation. It calls for reimbursing medical providers for time spent training family caregivers on certain responsibilities.

Jim Dau, state director of AARP Virginia, said being an unpaid family caregiver can be an arduous struggle with the unknown.

"Frequently, family caregivers will say, they're not really sure they know what they're doing," said Dau. "They leave a care setting, maybe with a stack of documents. It could be 25 pages deep without a real great sense of how to do everything on there."

He added that state-level initiatives such as a family caregiver tax credit can also help.

It would offer people an up to $1,000 tax credit on eligible expenses - such as putting in shower bars or a chair lift, or renting or leasing medical equipment.

The event is from 1 to 2 p.m. at the VHC Health Auditorium. People interested in attending can register online at AARP Virginia's website under the events tab.

Federal legislation is also being considered that could assist family caregivers.

One such bill is the Alleviating Barriers for Caregivers Act - which AARP's Healthcare, Family and Government Affairs Vice President Megan O'Reilly said helps caregivers navigate different information from federal agencies.

"It would really call on federal agencies such as the Social Security Administration and CMS," said O'Reilly, "to look at ways in which they can reduce that burden on caregivers when they're interacting with them."

Other legislation aims to reduce family caregivers' expenses and establish
a federal family caregiver tax credit.

Higher utility and everyday costs only compounded caregivers' strained finances during the pandemic.



Disclosure: AARP Virginia contributes to our fund for reporting on Consumer Issues, Health Issues, Hunger/Food/Nutrition, Senior Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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