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Action Alerts

Changes to State Involvement in Helping Medicare Savings Program (MSP) Members Select Medicare Part D Plans

  • Parent Category: News
  • Last Updated on Thursday, 16 October 2014 11:02
  • Published on Thursday, 16 October 2014 00:38
  • Written by Lydia Richard

Starting this fall, MSP benefit recipients will need to review their Medicare Part D Plans. The State of Maine will no longer pick a Medicare Part D plan for them. The local Area Agency on Aging is available to help these individuals. They will help them see if their medications are covered and select an appropriate plan. The Area Agency on Aging has several offices in the state. The office the member calls depends on where he/she resides. Please see the list of Area Agency on Aging phone numbers below:

Aroostook Agency on Aging, serves people who live in Aroostook County, 1-800-439-1789 or 764-3396
Eastern Area Agency on Aging, serves people who live in Hancock, Penobscot, Piscataquis or Washington counties, 1-800-432-7812 or 941-2865
Seniors Plus, serves people who live in Androscoggin, Franklin or Oxford counties, 1-800-427-1241 or 795-4010
Spectrum Generations serves people who live in Kennebec, Knox, Lincoln, Sagadahoc, Somerset, Waldo counties, and people who live in the towns of Brunswick or Harpswell,  1-800-639-1553 or 622-9212
Southern Maine Area Agency on Aging, serves people who live in York County, or Cumberland County except the towns of Harpswell and Brunswick, 1-800-427-7411 or 396-6500

For more information, please see the 2014 Medicare Part D Member letter that was sent to benefit recipients on MaineCare’s Member webpage.

Behavioral Health Homes (BHH) Quality Measures

  • Parent Category: News
  • Last Updated on Monday, 25 November 2013 15:08
  • Published on Monday, 25 November 2013 15:08
  • Written by Lydia Richard

A list of Selected Quality Measures for MaineCare’s BHH program is now available on the BHH webpage.  These measures will be used to identify improved outcomes in the following five goal areas:

Goal 1: Reduce Inefficient Healthcare Spending
Goal 2: Improve Chronic Disease Management
Goal 3: Promote Wellness and Prevention
Goal 4: Promote Recovery and Effective Management of Behavioral Health conditions
Goal 5: Promote Improved Experience of Care for Consumers/ Families

Measures were selected based on the following priorities:

  • Alignment with other value-based purchasing initiatives such as Stage A Health Homes and MaineCare Accountable Communities;
  • Use of nationally recognized measures;
  • Leveraging claims-based measures and/or existing reporting strategies to minimize burden on providers;
  • Relevance to the health of people with serious mental illness or serious emotional      disturbance;
  • Ability of the BHH services to have an impact on the measure.

This set of measures will be included in the MaineCare Behavioral Health Homes regulation. Public comment is encouraged when that rule is proposed in December. If you have any questions or would like additional information, please contact Kitty Purington at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Reports of our death have been greatly exaggerated

  • Parent Category: News
  • Last Updated on Thursday, 07 November 2013 09:29
  • Published on Thursday, 07 November 2013 09:29
  • Written by Lydia Richard

Recently the Advocacy Initiative Network had to give up its office space on Harlow Street in Bangor due to a lack of funding. However, we are still in operation with the same mailing address. We are using a cell phone which is a message phone and messages are checked regularly. The new number is 207-951-7007.


Research Opportunity: Developing Weight Loss Programs

  • Parent Category: News
  • Last Updated on Wednesday, 30 January 2013 14:48
  • Published on Wednesday, 30 January 2013 14:19
  • Written by Lydia Richard

The TU Collaborative invites you to participate in a new survey that seeks to gather input from individuals with psychiatric disabilities about the resources and services that would help them to achieve their weight loss goals. The information gathered will help to develop a weight loss program for mental health consumers interested in losing weight, providing the services and resources needed to develop and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Who is eligible: Participants need to be over the age of 18 and have a psychiatric disability.

What the survey covers: This survey will help us identify what mental health consumers would like to see in a weight loss intervention. The survey will ask questions about personal health, nutrition, physical activity, goal setting, and preferences in technology and weight loss programs. Responses to the survey are completely anonymous and participants may choose to skip any question they do not wish to answer or stop the survey at any time. There is no penalty for not completing the survey.

How can I participate: The survey, which will take about 10 minutes, can be completed on a computer or iPad.  To get started, click this link:

If you have any questions or would like more information about this survey, please contact Dr. Gretchen Snethen at (215)707-3390 or

It's Cold! Stay Safe from Winter's Bite

  • Parent Category: News
  • Last Updated on Thursday, 24 January 2013 19:05
  • Published on Thursday, 24 January 2013 19:05
  • Written by Lydia Richard

Bitterly cold temperatures continue to affect Maine and will for several days. Wild Chill Warnings and Advisories are in effect across much of the State. According to the National Weather Service, extreme cold conditions will continue into the weekend.

In addition to keeping yourself and your family warm and safe, please remember to check on friends and neighbors who may need extra help to stay warm. Keep track of expected temperatures by staying tuned to news broadcasts, or checking National Weather Service forecasts online.

Stay Safe in Cold Weather

  • Dress in layers.
  • Wear a warm hat – 30% of heat loss is through the head.
  • Wear a scarf and gloves.
  • Infants should be in a room in which the temperature is 61-68 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Drink plenty of fluids and warm/hot drinks.
  • Eat regular balanced meals to give you energy – good nutrition is important.
  • Keep active, but not to the point where you’re sweating.
  • Keep dry and change out of wet clothes as soon as possible.
  • Cut down on alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine, since all three cause heat loss.
  • Consider closing the door to unused rooms to keep the rooms you use most warm.
  • Ask your doctor if you are on any medications that affect your ability to maintain a steady body temperature (such as neuroleptic medications and sedative hypnotics).
  • Bring your pets indoors except for needed outdoor breaks.

Symptoms of hypothermia include:

  • Decreased consciousness, sleepiness, confusion, and/or disorientation
  • Shivering, pale or blue skin, numbness, poor coordination, slurred speech
  • In severe hypothermia, shivering decreases or goes away, and the person becomes unconscious and has very shallow breaths.
  • Someone who has mild hypothermia may not take action to warm themselves
  • If someone is exhibiting these symptoms, call 9-1-1

Warming centers may open in some areas to provide respite from the cold. Check with your town office or call 211 (dial 2-1-1 toll-free) to see if there is a warming center open in your area.

More information:

Hypothermia information and first aid tips from the Mayo Clinic

Hypothermia fact sheet courtesy of the MaineCDC

Funded In Part By:

Wrendy Hayne Mental Health Fund-Maine Community Foundation


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Pillars of Peer Support Presentation

We have made available to you the Pillars of Peer Support Presentation from our 2010 Annual Meeting.
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