Governor pushes aging plan for North Carolina

By Thomas Goldsmith

During Gov. Roy Cooper’s final full year in office, his administration will make a first-time, major push to benefit North Carolina’s fast-growing older population through new funding and changes in state operations according to interviews with principals and state documents.

Cooper’s legislative initiative will emerge during 2024 as the result of a public-nonprofit-business collaboration called “All Ages, All Stages NC: A Roadmap for Aging and Living Well,” which is set forth in an executive order on the topic. 

Support from North Carolina’s Republican-led General Assembly will be required to fulfill any of the new plan’s far-reaching approaches, including increasing the state’s supply of direct-care workers and improving older people’s access to transportation, housing and such services as senior centers and respite care.

“No. 1 is supporting the direct care industry,” said Cooper, a Democrat, after the announcement. “We know that there is a critical shortage right now to look after seniors and to make sure they receive the direct care that they need.”

While focused on older residents, the “All Ages, All Stages” plan and title reflects its aim “to make sure that individuals of all ages and stages of life can thrive and age gracefully within the state.”

A mansion presentation 

In May, Cooper — who turned 66 in June — walked onto the picturesque grounds of the Executive Mansion in Raleigh to present the executive order through which he would lead state agencies, local governments and nonprofits toward goals that include making North Carolina the nation’s 10th state designated as “age-friendly” under an AARP program.  

It was an optimistic presentation, served up with lemonade and chocolate chip cookies. But the event contained no emphasis on any new laws or regulations, which would be required to drive its ambitious, collaborative plan involving government, nonprofits and business, as well as other key sectors such as health care and the environment. Nor did anyone mention new spending to support financial goals that an official later agreed could cost hundreds of millions of dollars. 

“There is no question but that we’re going to need significant resources to be the kind of age-friendly state that we want to be,” Cooper said after the announcement. 

Preliminary budget requests arising from the new plan are to be produced by February. The process is being led by the NC Division of Aging and Adult Services and the Division of Health Benefits, which manages the state’s Medicaid program.

Which plan is which?

On July 1, the state Division of Aging and Adult Services released a detailed state aging plan for 2023-27, a document required every four years by the federal Older Americans Act

Division staff and leaders, along with the state Area Agencies on Aging, have conducted multiple listening sessions across the state, especially in underserved communities, to learn what older people wanted this plan to include. Planners emerged with a focus on equity and goals that often reflect those announced by Gov. Roy Cooper in May.

However, Cooper’s

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San Antonio plan pushes cultural representation in dental care across Texas

SAN ANTONIO – Lots of counties in South Texas desperately need dentists, exclusively dentists who depict the clients they serve.

The Hispanic Heart for Excellence at UT Wellness San Antonio is utilizing federal funding to fill that have to have and it is aiding equally pupils and patients.

As a young female growing up in Brownsville, Texas, Jessica De la Fuente didn’t have accessibility to program dental treatment.

“A ton of the spots I went to were neighborhood well being centers in Brownsville or my relatives, we had been heading to Mexico, crossing the border to get dental support,” De La Fuente stated.

When she finally was equipped to see a dentist routinely, her dream began.

“My main objective ever considering that beginning my journey in acquiring to dental university and becoming a dentist was normally to return back again to my hometown group and give back again to the location in which I was born and raised,” De La Fuente said.

Her history, capability and perseverance produced her a primary applicant for UT Wellbeing San Antonio’s Faculty of Dentistry.


A federal Well being Sources and Solutions Administration grant makes it possible for the faculty to recruit students from underserved parts who eventually will go back and support serve people communities.

“We recruit them, we mentor them, we guideline them so they’re prosperous candidates. The moment they are in dental school we want to be capable to give the means that they want to be profitable and to graduate,” explained Dr. Juanita Lozano-Pineda, the associate dean for Exterior Affairs at the UT Overall health San Antonio University of Dentistry, and director of its Hispanic Centre of Excellence.

Lozano-Pineda’s personal experience when she was younger is some thing that pushes her to diversify the earth of dentistry.

“Back in the working day, I was discouraged from heading to dental university by a dentist that I shadowed. And I felt that as a initially-era faculty attendee, what you need to have is an individual to aid your desire somewhat than trying to prevent you,” she reported.


She claimed the grant provides issues like tutoring and obtain to important summer packages.

Those systems have led to an raise in underrepresented minority applicants and enrollees, who now comprise much more than 30% of the dental school’s college students.

Additionally, the school’s graduates now account for 33% of training dentists in underserved counties of South Texas.

“Patients, they experience much more snug when they see a person from their background who speaks their native language, their lifestyle. I have found patients’ faces just light-weight up with happiness when they see, ‘Oh you converse Spanish’. It is kind of like a sigh of reduction, ‘You’re heading to listen to me. You are going to fully grasp what I’m declaring,’” De La Fuente reported.

De La Fuente will shortly graduate and return home to work, bringing with her the electric power to encourage potential younger dentists to do the identical.

“Just this past 7 days

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