NCOA names policy director
WASHINGTON, Sept. 18, 2012—The National Council on Aging (NCOA), the leading nonprofit service and advocacy organization for older Americans, announces that Leslie Fried has been named policy director to help advance the policy goals of NCOA’s benefits access and healthy aging teams.
NCOA’s National Center for Benefits Outreach and Enrollment (www.centerforbenefits.org) provides technical assistance, training and other support to state and local partners who are working to enroll eligible individuals into benefits to improve their lives. Fried will monitor policies related to benefits access across the states, especially those affecting individuals who are eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid and are among the most vulnerable of the nation’s seniors. For NCOA’s Center for Healthy Aging (www.ncoa.org/CHA) Fried will advance policies that empower and assist community-based organizations serving older adults in developing and implementing evidence-based health promotion and disease prevention programs.
Fried previously worked with the American Bar Association, Commission on Law and Aging, as the Director of the Alzheimer’s Association Medicare Advocacy Project. She advocated for improved Medicare coverage of services for beneficiaries with Alzheimer's disease and elimination of barriers to Medicare coverage based on diagnosis of dementia. Her successes included working with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to prohibit the automatic denial of claims for medical services based solely on the diagnosis of dementia and other progressive neurological conditions, and securing fast-track disability determinations from the Social Security Administration for individuals with dementia under the Compassionate Allowance Initiative.
“NCOA is thrilled to have Leslie join our organization,” said James Firman, president and CEO. “She brings a wealth of experience in policy and advocacy that will help us to improve the health and economic security of millions of older adults, especially those who are vulnerable and disadvantaged.”