By: Beth Melena, Deputy Press Secretary SHARE TWEET Like Governor Tom Wolf on Facebook: Facebook.com/GovernorWolf How the New Department of Health and Human Services Will Support Seniors Budget News, Government That Works, Healthcare, Human Services, Seniors, The Blog Earlier this week, Governor Wolf announced his plan to create a Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in his 2017-2018 budget, which would unite the Departments of Aging (PDA), Drug and Alcohol Programs (DDAP), Health (DOH), and Human Services (DHS) in order to help provide more streamlined services to Pennsylvanians.One group of Pennsylvanians the creation of this new department will benefit is seniors. Currently, older Pennsylvanians have to work through multiple agencies for the health and human services that they need. For example, seniors:Receive prescription assistance from PACE through PDA while locating where to dispose of unwanted or expired prescription drugs through DDAPApply for the aging waiver through DHS while seeking home and community-based services through PDASearch for information on the quality of nursing homes through DOH while reporting concerns to PDA once they’re in a facility. If those concerns result in an investigation that identifies a deficiency as threatening to a persons’ life or safety, that investigation and the subsequent penalties associated with it are administered by DOH.Older Pennsylvanians will now have one point of service with the Department of Health and Human Services. This will result in less confusion and easier access as constituents and their families seek services. It also builds on the Wolf Administration’s commitment to enabling citizens to age in place by preventing instability of health and wellness and protecting the most vulnerable from abuse, neglect, abandonment, and exploitation.Seniors will not see any cuts to their programs due to the creation of this new department and it will have no impact on how lottery fund monies are used to support senior programs. In fact, senior benefits and programs will be bolstered by the focus of a single agency.The Wolf Administration is dedicated to continue providing the same services as required under the Older Americans Act, while improving the quality of services for seniors by eliminating the unnecessary duplication of effort and the confusion it creates among Pennsylvania’s seniors and their families. February 01, 2017 SHARE Email Facebook Twitter
Last year was also characterised by continued positive growth outlooks but diminishing confidence in the financial markets, as well as heightened insecurity and risk aversion, it noted. Central bank monetary divergence was also a theme.In 2015, the largest share of Belgian occupational pension funds’ assets was invested in bonds, at 45%, followed by equities at 34%. Real estate accounted for 5%, liquid assets (cash) 3% and ‘other’ assets 13% (mainly insurance infrastructure, own funds and convertible bonds).The 4.4% average return figure is based on a sample of 40 pension funds with €14.16bn in total assets. Just over half of the funds have assets of more than €125m, with an average of €591m. Fourteen participating funds have assets in the €25m-125m range, while the remainder are smaller than €25m.Annual returns generated by the pension funds in the sample ranged from less than 1.62% to more than 6.12%, according to PensioPlus.Over 10 years, Belgian IORPs have on average returned 4.75% on a nominal basis, or 2.85% net of inflation, a presentation from the association shows. The real return for 2015 is 2.86%.FaceliftPensioPlus is the new name of what was formerly called ABIP (Assocition Belge des Institutions de Pensions), with the organisation having last year decided it was time to rebrand.Its new name is intended to better reflect its work as the association for supplementary pensions, as well as its aim to bring “added value” to its members, the association said.“The slogan ‘Smarter together for better pensions’ reminds us that we, as a member association and in collaboration with all stakeholders and political decision-makers, want to and can offer better pension solutions and insist on the importance of the second pillar,” said PensioPlus. Belgian second-pillar pension funds returned an average of 4.4% in 2015, down from 11.06% the previous year, according to a survey carried out by the country’s renamed occupational pension scheme association, PensioPlus.The survey shows that pension funds and insurers need to invest in the “real economy”, according to a presentation from the association.This is so they can obtain adequate yields of at least the 1.75% minimum guarantee, and to protect against inflation. Investing in the real economy is also necessary because bonds are no longer a “safe haven” and increasingly volatile, the association said.