Area Agency on Aging of Western Michigan: Commitment to Quality Programs

The Area Agency on Aging of Western Michigan (AAAWM) is an essential senior resource for a nine-county region that includes Allegan, Ionia, Kent, Lake, Mason, Mecosta, Montcalm, Newaygo, and Osceola counties. We work to connect seniors, family caregivers, and adults with disabilities to resources that help them to live independently. This includes programs for long term care services and supports to help make this independence possible.

MI Choice Medicaid Waiver is one of these programs. It provides person-centered care that empowers individuals to age-in-place in their own home rather than in a facility. Ongoing services through the program include personal care, housekeeping, meals, respite, and transportation. In an initial assessment, a Supports Coordinator is able to truly get to know an individual, coordinate their services, and connect them to partner agencies and community resources. Supports Coordinators do more than oversee an individual’s care, they become their advocate, making sure their needs are met. Sometimes, just having someone in their corner cheering them on can be a driving force for a person’s confidence in maintaining their independence at home.

Recently, the Area Agency on Aging of Western Michigan received a NCQA Accreditation of Case Management for Long-Term Services and Supports (LTSS) for our MI Choice Medicaid Waiver program. This three-year accreditation is from the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA), a nonprofit organization that issues Accreditation, Certifications, and Recognition programs based upon measurement, transparency, and accountability to highlight top performers and drive improvement. Earning NCQA’s Accreditation of Case Management for LTSS demonstrates that an organization is dedicated to coordinating the delivery of care in a person-centered and integrated manner to help individuals function optimally in their preferred setting.

When asked about this accreditation for the Area Agency on Aging of Western Michigan, Suzanne Filby-Clark, AAAWM Care Management Services Director explained, “We’re proud of our agency and staff as the preparation for this accreditation lasted approximately 12 months. The agency performed gap analysis to determine tasks. Work groups were formed to seek clinical input, policies and procedures were written to align with the requirements, and all necessary documentation was notated and organized for submission. This NCQA accreditation shows our partners, participants, and community members prioritize and provide high quality care and services.”

The NCQA accreditation reinforces the Area Agency on Aging of Western Michigan’s commitment to improving the health outcomes of our patient population and ensuring the delivery of person-centered care. To learn more about the MI Choice Medicaid Waiver program and other resources for aging in place, reach out to the Area Agency on Aging of Western Michigan’s Information and Assistance team at (616) 456-5664.

About the Area Agency on Aging of Western Michigan

Area Agency on Aging of Western Michigan helps older adults and individuals with disabilities remain independent and provides support and education to caregivers in Allegan, Ionia, Kent, Lake, Mason, Mecosta, Montcalm, Newaygo, and Osceola counties. You can visit to learn about our programs and services and follow us on Facebook at

About NCQA

NCQA is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to improving health care quality. NCQA accredits and certifies a wide range of health care organizations. It also recognizes clinicians and practices in key areas of performance. NCQA’s Healthcare Effectiveness Data and Information Set (HEDIS®) is the most widely used performance measurement tool in health care. NCQA’s website ( contains information to help consumers, employers and others make more-informed health care choices. NCQA can be found online at, on Twitter @ncqa, on Facebook at   and on LinkedIn at