What is an ADRC?
ADRC? Great idea….but what is it exactly? Well, ADRC stands for Aging and Disability Resource Center. The idea started as a result of the complexity of services to both the aging and disability communities. There are agencies that serve people over 55 and under 60, there are agencies that serve people who have specific types of disabilities, those that serve people with a variety of disabilities, and a multitude of social services with qualifications of their own. So the idea came about that both the aging and disability communities would be best served if they didn’t have to navigate between all the different agencies that provided all the different kinds of services…and a “No Wrong Door” or “One Stop Shop” program was born: ADRC.
In 2003, the Administration on Community Living (including Area on Aging) and the Center for Medicare and Medicaid collaborated and began providing funding for states to develop ADRC’s. ADRC programs raise visibility about the full range of options that are available to consumers, provide objective information, advice, counseling and assistance, empower people to make informed decisions about their long term supports, and help people more easily access public and private long term supports and services programs.
About 6 years ago several aging and disability related agencies in the Metro East/Southern Illinois area came together to form our own ADRC: Area Agency on Aging of S.W. Illinois, LINC & OFA Centers for Independent Living, local Case Coordination Units, Southwestern Illinois Visiting Nurses, and several other aging network Information and Assistance providers.
We cross trained our agency staff so they would have a greater understanding of the programs and qualifying criteria of the other agencies and could avoid the “goose chase” referrals. Goose chase referrals happen when the agency you call refers you to another who gives you the phone number of another…..and around and around you go!
The ADRC relationships we have formed have created a stronger network of services for those aging with and without disabilities. So whether you need help with something fairly uncomplicated like completing an energy assistance application or as confusing as navigating Medicare information, your ADRC can help! You have questions? Just call Millie at LINC, Inc. ~ 618-235-9988 or Area Agency on Aging of Southwestern Illinois ~ 618-222-2561
The Area Agency on Aging would like to thank Lynn Hatfield for this week’s blog post. Lynn is the Assistant Executive Director at Living Independently Now Center (LINC, Inc) the Center for Independent living for St. Clair, Monroe and Randolph counties in Southern Illinois. You can contact LINC at (618) 235-9988 Voice/TTY, (618) 310-0054 Video Phone or visit their website at www.lincinc.org .