New Senior Assistance Benefits

Submitted by Clay Butcher on May 25, 2007 - 1:16pm

On Wednesday afternoon, Governor Palin announced that assistance to seniors will be continued at least through the month of July.

We will continue to provide the $120 cash payment and prescription drug benefits to seniors who qualified for the Senior Care Program for the month of July through the General Relief Assistance program.

All SeniorCare recipients are being transitioned from the Senior Care Program into the General Relief Assistance (GRA) program, and these benefits will be paid under GRA as a senior assistance benefit. We can no longer make reference to this help as SeniorCare as that program sunsets June 30, 2007.

Good News! New Medicaid Adult Dental Services

Submitted by Anonymous on April 7, 2007 - 1:23pm

On April 1, 2007, the Medicaid program began providing dental coverage for adults up to a total limit of $1,150 per year for dental care, such as exams and cleanings. This new coverage also includes fillings, crowns, root canals and dentures.

Medicaid still covers adult dental services for emergency pain relief and acute infection. These emergency dental services do not count against the annual limit.

Off and Running!

Submitted by Clay Butcher on March 29, 2007 - 2:28pm

GIVE ME FIVE! 2007 Food Stamp Accuracy Campaign

We’ve set campaign sights on attaining 95% Food Stamp Program payment accuracy for 2007. Nearly three months of the Quality Assessment sample are complete, and we are off to a good start. Our accuracy rate now stands at 93.8%. On a hopeful note, we often get off to a slow start, yet this year is a bit better than we’ve been at this point in the past few years. A couple of client-caused errors pushed the rate up, so I’m confident that our improving agency-caused error rate is a good sign that will carry us to our accuracy goal.

Ellie Fitzjarrald appointed as DPA director!

Submitted by Clay Butcher on March 7, 2007 - 3:39pm

Health and Social Services Commissioner Karleen Jackson recently announced the appointment of Ellie Fitzjarrald as Public Assistance director.

Ellie Fitzjarrald has served as acting Public Assistance director since June 2006.

“Public Assistance touches many lives on a very personal level, and it requires a unique kind of leadership,” Jackson said. “I am pleased to have Ellie continue in this leadership role ─ she has a great understanding of the importance of public assistance in helping people achieve the highest possible degree of self sufficiency while in the most vulnerable of circumstances.”

New and Improved Online Program Policy Manuals

Submitted by Curtis Nelson on January 5, 2007 - 1:38pm

We are happy to announce that the four new and improved online program manuals are now available on the internal DPA website (DPAweb):

These new online manuals are interactive and user-friendly. We hope you find the new features and improvements helpful. Enhancements made to the manuals include index and glossary sections, a search function, cross-referencing and hyperlinks to help you find what you are looking for. Special features allow you to print manual sections, and add them to favorites. There is an email function but it is not working properly at this time. It should be available soon.

Draft DPA Application Wins Award!

Submitted by Clay Butcher on December 28, 2006 - 10:29am

For the past year, we have been revising our Application for Services (Gen50B) form using the expertise of the Kleimann Communications Group.

Although still in draft form, Kleimann entered it into the MarCom Creative Awards competition in October… and WE WON! Our draft Application for Services won the MarCom Platinum Award in the Writing/Technical category. Only 15% of entries received this most prestigious Platinum Award this year.

Give Me Five!

Submitted by Clay Butcher on September 25, 2006 - 2:49pm

October 1st begins a new year for Food Stamp Program accuracy measurement. Our hard work and increased payment accuracy focus has led to much improved work quality in the past several years, yet we've remain short of our goal to do better than the national average. We set our goal last year for a 94 percent accuracy rate. We are still striving for that goal, in the current year and our national payment accuracy ranking among the states is 36th. We aim in the FFY 2007 quality control sample to achieve 95 percent accuracy. Give Me Five! is our new campaign theme. A 5 percent food stamp payment error rate (Give Me Five - get it?) would earn us a respectable place in the top 20 in the national rankings.

HHS Releases Energy Assistance Funds to Alaska

Submitted by Clay Butcher on September 12, 2006 - 9:33am

HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt today announced the release of $79.9 million in energy assistance for 14 states. These contingency funds, from the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) program, will provide states with heating assistance for the fall and winter months ahead.

"This assistance will help states prepare for heating costs this fall and winter," Secretary Leavitt said. "With this funding, the Bush Administration is helping those in need by ensuring their homes are kept warm during the winter months."

DPAStars

Submitted by Debbie McDonald on September 8, 2006 - 2:02pm

I am pleased to announce two more of DPA’s stars! These two individuals show the best of DPA in every way. They bring the utmost in professionalism to the office and also keep spirits high with their smiles and good humor. Thank you both for the incredible contributions you make to our organization and your commitment toward fulfilling our mission!

Please join me in recognizing and celebrating the accomplishments of these two fine individuals, and one of which we must sadly say goodbye to.

Ellie Fitzjarrald, Acting Director

Successes Marked on 10th Anniversary of Welfare Reform

Submitted by Curtis Nelson on August 21, 2006 - 1:00pm

From ACF Office of Public Affairs:

On the 10th anniversary of welfare reform, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is highlighting key successes of the initiative.

"Welfare reform brought significant improvements in the lives of many Americans by helping them break the cycle of dependency and encouraging them to pursue self-sufficiency," HHS Secretary Mike Leavitt said. "As we enter the next phase, we are committed to finishing the unfinished business of welfare reform by helping more Americans find jobs that will lift them from the welfare rolls."