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Alejandra Cancino's Stories

Alejandra Cancino was named the first recipient of The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research Fellowship on Long-Term Care in America.

States require insurance companies to locate beneficiaries 7/14/2016

CHICAGO (AP) — Beneficiaries of unclaimed life insurance policies already have received billions of dollars — and others could be in store for some unexpected        cash — the result of state actions forcing companies to locate heirs and pay them the money they are owed.

Nearly two dozen states have passed laws requiring companies to search for beneficiaries. Illinois is the latest to consider a version of the legislation.​

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Seasonal farmworkers face battle to get health insurance 6/20/2016

DUNN, N.C. (AP) — Some seasonal agricultural workers were finishing a meal after a long day of planting sweet potato seeds when Julie Pittman pulled into to their camp.

Up since dawn, they had worked through an 80-degree day that was just beginning to cool off. Now, Pittman, a paralegal with the Farmworker Unit of Legal Aid of North Carolina, wanted to get their attention.

The health care law passed in 2010 requires you to have health insurance, she told them in Spanish. If you don't get it, she said, you could be fined.

Poll: People unsure about ability to pay for long-term care​​​​​ 6/1/2016

CHICAGO (AP) — Demand for long-term care is expected to increase as the nation ages, but the majority of Americans 40 and older lack confidence in their ability to pay for it.

The annual cost of long-term care expenses range from $17,680 for adult day care to more than $92,000 for a private room in a nursing home, according to Genworth Financial.

Yet an Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research survey finds that a third of Americans 40 and older have done no planning for their own-long term care needs, such as setting aside money to pay for a home aide or to help with daily activities or a room in a nursing home.

Poll shows strong support for paid family leave programs 5/20/2016

CHICAGO (AP) — Time off from work to care for a child or relative is codified in federal law. Now, an overwhelming majority of Americans 40 and older want that time away from the job to be paid.

An Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll released Friday said 72 percent support paid family leave. Democrats were more likely to back it, but Republicans also expressed strong support. Overall, support was stronger among people age 40-64 and among women.

Nursing homes starting to offer more individualized menus 5/2/2016

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — On a recent Thursday, the staff at Sunny Vista Living Center in Colorado Springs bustled in the kitchen. The phone rang with a last minute order as Chris Willard tended to a large pot of Thai-style soup with fresh ginger, vegetables and thin-sliced beef.

It was a special meal for a woman of Asian descent who didn't like any of the dozen choices on the menu.

New push to keep seniors in home, community-based programs 4/4/2016

CHICAGO (AP) — The federal government is pushing states to keep more low-income seniors out of nursing homes and, instead, enroll them in home and community-based programs.

The shift comes as demand for long-term care is rising. By 2050, the number of people older than 85 is expected to triple to more than 18 million. These seniors tend to have the highest disability rate and the greatest need for long-term care.

Caregivers of people with dementia face financial hardships 3/30/2016

​CHICAGO (AP) — Many relatives and friends providing financial support or care to people with dementia have dipped into their retirement savings, cut back on spending and sold assets to pay for expenses tied to the disease, according to a survey released Wednesday by the Alzheimer's Association.

More grandparents taking on parental role for grandchildren 2/16/2016

CHICAGO (AP) — When Debra Aldridge became her grandson's primary caregiver, she was making $7.50 per hour as a cook. The alternative for the newborn, she was told, was to put him up for adoption.

Tips for caregivers traveling with elderly, frail relatives 12/16/2015

CHICAGO (AP) — Nancy Powers had to adjust her travel routine when her best friend and travel partner, Phyllis Wesley, was diagnosed with a degenerative brain condition that affects her speech and comprehension.

Patients' needs addressed in 'person-centered health care' 11/9/2015

CHICAGO (AP) — Every time JoAnna James took her husband, Lawrence, to the doctor, she left the hospital without understanding what was wrong with him.

"You ask (doctors) to break it down so you can understand what they are saying and they make you feel like there is something wrong with you," said James, 67.