WASHINGTON, DC - There is good news for America’s 90 million caregivers today! Caregiver Action Network is pleased by the passage of the RAISE (Recognize, Assist, Include, Support, and Engage) Family Caregivers Act (S. 1028/H.R. 3759) by the US House of Representatives yesterday. The RAISE Family Caregivers Act passed the Senate unanimously on September 26, 2017, and now is on its way to the President’s desk to await his signature.
CAN has been tirelessly advocating for passage of this bill for years because it will help make a difference in the lives of the millions of family caregivers across the US.
Make no mistake, this legislation is a big deal for family caregivers everywhere. If signed into law, the RAISE Family Caregivers Act will raise awareness within the government of family caregivers, their needs, and the enormity of their role in the US healthcare system. It will require the Department of Health and Human Services to create and maintain a strategy to recognize and support family caregivers. The strategy will be developed by top experts in the world of caregiving - from the private and public sectors, state and local officials, employers, persons with disabilities, older adults, veterans, providers of healthcare and long-term services and supports. All these groups and more will come together to advise and make recommendations concerning the new strategy.
There will be opportunities for public input, and what’s more, real family caregivers will have the opportunity to be heard because the advisory council meetings will be open to the public. Once completed, the strategy will pinpoint actions that communities, government, providers, and others are currently taking and should take in the future to recognize and support family caregivers. It will also help support and inform state and local efforts to support family caregivers. Lastly, the RAISE Family Caregivers Act will improve the collection and sharing of information.
The RAISE Family Caregivers Act is a huge step in the right direction, and CAN applauds Congress for passing this important piece of legislation that will help millions of real people all across America.