Gov. Gavin Newsom

A new “master plan for aging,” which will be created following the signing of an executive order by California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Monday, is a big step forward for the state, according to one provider group.

The plan “will allow us to have a holistic conversation about the needs of older adults into the future,” Eric Dowdy, chief operating officer for LeadingAge California, told McKnight’s Senior Living. “We applaud Gov. Newsom and look forward to partnering with his administration on the development of the plan.”

Newsom’s executive order calls for the plan to be created by Oct. 1, 2020.

The order follows the governor’s State of the State address in February, during which he said that the state’s senior population often is overlooked despite the fact that it is projected to grow to 8.6 million by 2030.

“The Golden State is getting grayer, and we need to be ready for the major population changes headed our way,” Newsom said Monday.

The master plan will be a blueprint that can be used by the state government, local communities, private organizations and philanthropic organizations to build environments that promote healthy aging. Additionally, the plan will look beyond public programs and include all older Californians, even those who don’t use or have access to public services.

In response to the governor’s executive order, the secretary of the California Health and Human Services Agency must create a cabinet-level Workgroup for Aging to advise the secretary in developing and issuing the plan. The workgroup will include research and long-term care subcommittees.

The Long-Term Care Subcommittee is tasked with issuing a report to the governor by March on stabilizing state long-term care programs and infrastructure, including in-home supportive services.

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