Older adults are the largest consumers of health care and long term services. This trend will continue to grow as this population sector experiences unprecedented growth over the next 40 years. Including adult children, this sector currently represents over 90 million consumers across the nation.1 Collectively we consumers should be a major force in shaping and informing services and supports as well as caregiving practices.
In order for consumers to be ‘heard,’ there needs to be effective mechanisms to make this happen. CCAL has created a three-pronged approach to coalesce a collective consumer voice. The three-pronged approach includes:
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- Help empower and engage consumers through a national initiative for consumers to create their own PCL Bill of Rights.
- Partner with leading national organizations to host Town Hall Forums to bring together aging and disability consumers with aging and disability leaders in numerous cities every year.
- Launch a national ‘by consumers-for consumers’ awareness campaign so that aging and disability service and support providers clearly know what consumers want.
1 Including adult children family members, the number of Americans age 50 and over account for 31% of the nearly 311 million total U.S. population – approximately 93 million people. Statistics are from the U.S. Census Bureau’s “2006-2008 American Community Survey.”