This page shares a variety of additional resources for the consumer of aging services, grouped as follows:
Attorney General’s Office
TTY: (617) 727-4765
The Attorney General is the Commonwealth’s chief law officer, charged with protecting the “public interest.” The Attorney General’s Elder Protection Unit coordinates efforts with others in the community and collectively addresses critical issues such as crime prevention, consumer protection, health care and financial exploitation.
Department of Housing & Community Development
TTY: (617) 573-1140
The Department of Housing & Community Development (DHCD) makes state and federal funds and technical assistance available to strengthen communities and help them plan new developments, encourage economic development, revitalize older areas, improve local government management, build and manage public housing, stimulate affordable housing through the private sector and respond to the needs of low-income people. The Office administers the state’s public housing programs, coordinates its anti-poverty efforts, allocates federal community development programs and provides a variety of services to local government officials. Their website includes information on how to obtain housing assistance in Massachusetts including contacts for local housing authorities.
Department of Public Health / Division of Health Care Quality
The Division of Health Care Quality, which is within the Department of Public Health, inspects nursing homes at least every 9-15 months to assess compliance with federal standards of care such as adequacy of staffing, quality of care and cleanliness of facilities. In addition, as necessary, the Division investigates complaints and serious incidents occurring within a nursing home. Information from these surveys is available to consumers to help evaluate the quality of care provided by the state’s Medicare and Medicaid certified nursing homes on the Department of Public Health website: www.mass.gov/eohhs/gov/departments/dph/.
Executive Office of Elder Affairs
TDD/TTY (800) 872-0166
The Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs is the state unit on aging in Massachusetts. Among its functions, Elder Affairs provides funding and oversight to the state home care program through contracts with 27 regional Aging Service Access Points, regulates Assisted Living Residences, administers the Prescription Advantage Program, the Ombudsman program for long term care and assisted living and Elder Protective Services. Elder Affairs provides resources for consumers in areas such as senior housing and family caregiving.
Massachusetts Long Term Care Ombudsman
A Long Term Care Ombudsman is an advocate for residents living in long term care facilities. Ombudsmen offer a way for residents and their loved ones to voice their complaints and have their concerns addressed so that residents can live their lives with dignity and respect
TDD: (617) 854-1025
MassHousing is the state’s affordable housing bank. MassHousing lends money at rates below the conventional market to support rental and home ownership opportunities for low- and moderate-income residents in Massachusetts. Information on senior rental housing communities can be found at the MassHousing website.
Massachusetts Office of Medicaid (MassHealth)
MassHealth provides health care coverage for financially eligible individuals. MassHealth covers nursing facility care, adult day health care, assisted living through the Group Adult Foster Care program, home health care and other home and community based services through the state’s home and community based services waiver, and through the Senior Care Options program for eligible individuals
Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC)
MRC is responsible for Vocational Rehabilitation Services, Community Services, and eligibility determination for the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) federal benefits programs. In addition, MRC administers the Home Modification program.
Medicare Beneficiary Hotline: (800) 252-5533
Masspro is the quality improvement organization (QIO) with an objective, independent voice for improving the quality of health care in Massachusetts. In addition to working with nursing homes, hospitals and home health care agencies on quality improvement initiatives, Medicare beneficiaries can appeal to Masspro regarding a decision made by a provider to end Medicare coverage.
Administration on Aging
Elder Care Locator
The Administration on Aging (AoA), is the Federal focal point and advocate agency for older persons and their concerns. In this role, AoA works to heighten awareness among other Federal agencies, organizations, groups, and the public about the valuable contributions that older Americans make to the Nation and alerts them to the needs of vulnerable older people. AoA does this by serving as the Federal agency responsible for advancing the concerns and interests of older people and their caregivers, and by working with and through the Aging Services Network to promote the development of a comprehensive and coordinated system of home and community-based long-term care that is responsive to the needs and preferences of older people and their family caregivers. In addition to funding home and community based services, AoA operates the national Elder Care Locator, which is the first step to finding resources for older adults in any U.S. community. Just one phone call or Website visit provides an instant connection to resources that enable older persons to live independently in their communities. The service links those who need assistance with state and local area agencies on aging and community-based organizations that serve older adults and their caregivers.
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)
The Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) oversees the Medicare and Medicaid programs on the national level including the Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit (Medicare Part D). Medicare beneficiaries can receive information about the Prescription Drug Benefit, compare information about nursing homes and home health agencies and more at www.medicare.gov.
Nursing Home Compare
Administered by CMS, Nursing Home Compare is a website allowing consumers to compare nursing facilities around the country on a number of different criteria including inspection results, staffing and certain other quality measures.
Social Security Administration
TTY: (800) 325-0778
In addition to benefits for retired workers, Social Security provides financial support to younger workers and their families who face a loss of income due to disability or the death of a family wage earner. The Supplemental Security Insurance (SSI) program provides monthly income to people who are age 65 or older, or are blind or disabled, and have limited income and financial resources. Additional information and applications for benefits can be obtained online.
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
(617) 994-8200 (Boston Regional Office)
TTY: (800) 325-0778
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) administers Federal aid to local housing agencies (HAs) that manage the housing for low-income residents at rents they can afford.
TDD (202) 479-6679
AARP is a not-for-profit membership organization dedicated to addressing the needs and interests of persons 50 and older.
Advancing Excellence in America’s Nursing Homes Campaign
The Mission of the Advancing Excellence in America’s Nursing Homes Campaign is to help nursing homes achieve excellence in the quality of care and quality of life for the more than 1.5 million residents of America’s nursing homes. The website includes information about how consumers can get involved with the campaign.
(800) 272-3900 (Massachusetts Chapter)
The Alzheimer’s Association, a national network of chapters, is the largest national voluntary health organization dedicated to advancing Alzheimer’s research and helping those affected by the disease. The Association ranks as the top private funder of research into the causes, treatments, and prevention of Alzheimer’s disease. The Association also provides education and support for people diagnosed with the condition, their families, and caregivers.
CARF/CCAC is a national accrediting body for numerous aging services including continuing care retirement communities, adult day health programs and assisted living.
Greater Boston Legal Services
Greater Boston Legal Services Elder units provides assistance to individuals over 60 for legal matters related to housing, health care, nursing home and other issues. They also administer the Medicare Advocacy Project to assist clients with Medicare problems.
Home Care Alliance of Massachusetts
The Home Care Alliance provides listings of home health agencies in Massachusetts.
Hospice and Palliative Care Federation of Massachusetts
The Hospice and Palliative Care Federation of Massachusetts offers a list of hospice programs in Massachusetts.
Formerly called the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging (AAHSA), LeadingAge is an association of 5,500 not-for-profit organizations dedicated to expanding the world of possibilities for aging.
LGBT Aging Project
The mission of the LGBT Aging Project is to ensure that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender elders have equal access to the life-prolonging benefits, protections, services and institutions that their heterosexual neighbors take for granted.
Massachusetts Association of Residential Care Homes (MARCH)
MARCH is an organization that supports and advocates for residential care homes (Rest Homes) in the Commonwealth.
Massachusetts Advocates for Nursing Home Reform
Active since 2000, the Massachusetts Advocates for Nursing Home Reform (“MANHR”) is the sole statewide consumer group working for improvements in the quality of care for MA long-term care residents. The organization provides resources to individuals seeking advice on long-term care issues and supports a statewide network of family run councils in Massachusetts nursing homes.
Massachusetts Association of Older Americans
The Massachusetts Association of Older Americans (MAOA) MAOA is a grass roots organization dedicated to ensuring that older people remain in the mainstream of life through education about aging issues, programs, and problems.
Massachusetts Councils on Aging
Local Councils on Aging (COA) provide services and referrals for the following: assessment and evaluation; assistance in your home; care planning, housing options; nursing homes; respite care; medical services; transportation; public benefits counseling; recreational activities; volunteer opportunities; SHINE (Serving Health Information Needs of Elders) and more.
Massachusetts Senior Care Association
Provides healthcare and senior care information for consumers and long term care providers.
Mass Home Care
Mass Home Care is a network of 30 local Age Info Centers providing information about on elder services in Massachusetts.
Mass Accessible Housing Registry
The Mass Accessible Housing Registry is a free program that helps people with disabilities find rental housing in Massachusetts, primarily accessible and barrier-free housing. The database tracks accessible and affordable apartments throughout the state, maintaining information about their availability.
People with disabilities can search this information to identify housing opportunities that suit their needs. A contact person and phone number is provided for you to call them directly if you are interested in applying to a particular apartment.
National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care (formerly NCCNHR)
National consumers’ and advocates’ organization empowering consumers, promoting best practices, and developing public policy.
National Council on Aging
TDD (202) 479-6679
National Council on Aging (NCOA) is the nation’s first association of organizations and professionals dedicated to promoting the dignity, self-determination, well being, and contributions of older persons. Their website offers a free, confidential online service that screens seniors’ eligibility for benefits programs.
National Family Caregivers Association
The National Family Caregivers Association (NFCA) supports family caregivers and speaks out publicly for caregivers’ needs.
The Pioneer Network
The Pioneer Network is a growing coalition of organizations and individuals from across the nation, working to change and transform the culture of aging in America. The Pioneer Network advocates for public policy changes, creates communication, networking and learning opportunities; builds and supports relationships and community; identifies and promotes transformation in practice, services, public policy and research; develops and provides access to resources and leadership; and hosts a national conference to bring together interested parties with a desire to propel this important work.