West Health Statement on Strategic Plan for Aging Act

2 min
March 14, 2024
West Health Institute CEO & Chair, Shelley Lyford, issued the following statement on the proposed Strategic Plan for Aging Act, landmark legislation that would incentivize states to “transform the infrastructure and coordination of services for their aging populations.” The bill was introduced in late February by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), a member of the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging and its chair, U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA).

March 14, 2024 – “West Health strongly supports the passage of the Strategic Plan for Aging Act, landmark legislation that would improve aging in America and enable more older adults to successfully age at home or in their own communities with independence, dignity, and a higher quality of life. It would help older Americans ‘navigate everything from housing and food insecurity to skyrocketing health care costs, insufficient retirement savings, and elder abuse.’

West Health has long been a champion of state-initiated efforts to develop and implement multisector plans for aging both in our home state of California and across the country. At least 24 states are currently engaged in such plans. The Strategic Plan for Aging Act would help accelerate efforts in these and other states by providing grants for planning, resources and solutions that span healthcare, financial security, housing, food insecurity and elder abuse.

For the last several years, West Health has been collaborating with The SCAN Foundation and May and Stanley Smith Charitable Trust to encourage strategic plan development through the Multisector Plan for Aging Learning Collaborative led by The Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS). West Health and The Scan Foundation themselves played key roles in the development and implementation of California’s first Master Plan for Aging now in its third year. Major accomplishments include the expansion of geriatric emergency care throughout the state, the development of telehealth tools for seniors, the growth of the Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) model, and enhancements to home and community-based care programs.

West Health joins more than 48 organizations including the American Society on Aging (ASA), Grantmakers in Aging (GIA), and the National Council on Aging (NCOA) in endorsing the Strategic Plan for Aging Act. The need is great. By 2030, more than one-fifth of the population will be 65 or older, and for the first time in history older adults will outnumber children in the U.S. To learn more about multisector plans for aging, visit”

About West Health
Solely funded by philanthropists Gary and Mary West, West Health is a family of nonprofit and nonpartisan organizations including the Gary and Mary West Foundation and Gary and Mary West Health Institute in San Diego, and the Gary and Mary West Health Policy Center in Washington, D.C. West Health is dedicated to lowering healthcare costs to enable seniors to successfully age in place with access to high-quality, affordable health and support services that preserve and protect their dignity, quality of life and independence. Learn more at and follow @westhealth.

Media Contact
Tiffany Yu
Manager, Content & Communications 


Shelley Lyford
CEO, Chair & Trustee, Gary and Mary West Foundation
CEO & Chair, West Health Institute