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How Can My Parents Protect Their Savings When They Apply for Medicaid?

When they were working, my parents saved $50,000 for any major health expense they might have. Currently they live with me and only receive Social Security, which is not enough for them to live on their own. I would like to apply for Medicaid on thei

The surprising health risks of hearing loss

The findings from a 10 year study by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) have reported a link between hearing loss and health risks. The risks include a 50% greater risk of dementia, a 40% greater risk of developing depression and a nearly 30% higher risk of accidental falls. While hearing loss is becoming more prevalent in younger people due to the use of earbuds and noise pollution, it is the elderly population who are more quickly and significantly affected by adverse health risks because of their hearing loss.

The Senior Safe Act

The Senior Safe Act, signed into law by President Trump earlier this year, is designed to protect our elders from financial abuse from either within a family or support system, or by scam artists preying upon them. Tens of billions of dollars each year are illegally taken from US seniors and these numbers only reflect the crimes being reported.

Emotional Support Animals and Seniors

Most of us know what a service animal is, but the use of emotional support animals is becoming more and more common. So, what is an emotional support animal? An emotional support animal is a companion animal that provides benefits to a person who has an emotional or mental health disorder. In order to be characterized as an emotional support animal, documentation from a health professional must be obtained for the animal. Mostly commonly, these animals are dogs, but other animals can serve as emotional support animals. It is becoming more evident that these emotional support animals can provide some real benefits to the health and wellness of the senior population. Whether depressed, dealing with ongoing disabilities, or chronic illnesses, emotional support animals can be one of the best treatment options out there.

Tips for Dealing with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

By far the largest types of insurance fraud are scams against government and private health care insurers. Scammers frequently target government insurance like Medicare by stealing newly issued medical ID cards and then stealing identities. The Coalition Against Insurance Fraud estimates that tens of billions of dollars are lost annually to these types of fraud. Additionally, medical identity theft is now a top complaint received by the Federal Trade Commission. Billing fraud is also responsible for huge losses to Medicare funds and is difficult to assess as it can be a billing error or intentional fraud.

Tips for Dealing with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

By far the largest types of insurance fraud are scams against government and private health care insurers. Scammers frequently target government insurance like Medicare by stealing newly issued medical ID cards and then stealing identities. The Coalition Against Insurance Fraud estimates that tens of billions of dollars are lost annually to these types of fraud. Additionally, medical identity theft is now a top complaint received by the Federal Trade Commission. Billing fraud is also responsible for huge losses to Medicare funds and is difficult to assess as it can be a billing error or intentional fraud.

Tips for Dealing with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a medical condition where the body experiences difficulty coping with severe stress. There are many triggers, but it is commonly diagnosed in combat Veterans. PTSD can also be caused by witnessing or living through shocking events such as accidents or crimes.

Age Discrimination

Age discrimination in the workplace is a problem that has been addressed by lawmakers since the 1960's but continues to be a serious problem. According to study.com, age discrimination is defined as "the practice of letting a person's age unfairly become a factor when deciding who receives a new job, promotion, or other job benefits. Decisions about terminating employees also cannot be solely based on their age.” Age discrimination is illegal and there are laws to protect people from it.

Can You Put a Surveillance Camera in a Nursing Home Room?

Technological advances have made it easier to stay connected with loved ones all the time. This has included the ability to install cameras in a loved one's nursing home room. These so-called "granny cams" have legal and privacy implications.

Disability, Poverty, and the Policy Behind the ABLE Act

The Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act enables independence and self-reliance for persons with disabilities. The act created the ABLE account, a powerful tool to help persons with disabilities save money and control their own future. The ABLE account has become enormously popular. States that have implemented ABLE programs report thousands of participants and millions of dollars being saved by persons with disabilities. Ohio opened the first ABLE program on June 1, 2016. Since then more than 34 states have started ABLE programs, with more states joining on a regular basis.

A Great Time to Adopt An Exercise Program (Even the Government Agrees)

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has released its latest findings addressing healthy exercise guidelines for older adults. The overall conclusion is that all aging adults should include aerobic and muscle strengthening exercises as well as add balance training. The authors of the study by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) state “All three aspects are important for this population because older adults are at an increased risk of falls, and strength and balance are needed to prevent falls.” Physically active adults are better able to engage in activities of daily living and have improved physical function.

Using Technology to Reduce Feelings of Isolation

The holidays are upon us and unfortunately many seniors feel even more isolated during this time. Thankfully, technology has provided some interactive gadgets to help lessen feelings of isolation. One of those gadgets, called the GrandPad, is discussed below.

Appropriate Documents For End-of-Life Care Decisions

You may think your living will is in order, including instructions regarding resuscitation commonly referred to as a DNR (do not resuscitate). While your wishes in a living will may be appropriately documented, that does not guarantee the instructions will be carried out as you stated. The frightening truth is that mistakes about your end-of-life instructions are made while you are at your most vulnerable. Dr. Monica Williams-Murphy, medical director of advance-care planning and end-of-life education for Huntsville Hospital Health System in Alabama has said, “Unfortunately, misunderstandings involving documents meant to guide end-of-life decision-making are surprisingly common.”

Learn About Social Security's Online Tools

With the aging population becoming increasingly tech savvy, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has moved a lot of services online. From applying for Social Security benefits to replacing a card, the SSA has online tools to help.

Are Payments to Third Parties Subject to the Five-Year Look-Back Period When Applying for Medicaid?

Are payments to third parties subject to Medicaid’s five-year look-back rule? If I purchase item(s) for my child, but make the check out to a third party (i.e., check paid to retailer for appliances, to firm for landscaping services, to roofing company for new roof, etc.), are these also subject to the five-year rule, even if the check is not payable to my child?

The Role of Virtual Care in Senior Living Markets

For care providers and aging seniors in the information age, the future is now. While still with some challenges, adoption of virtual care as a standard in senior living and aging services has become a fully integrated and accepted practice to overcome obstacles in senior healthcare.

New Opportunities for Wartime Veterans

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recently released new eligibility rules for the VA pension program. VA pension, a tax-free monthly cash benefit, is available to wartime Veterans who served at least 90 days of active duty service with 1 day during a declared period of war. Surviving spouses of wartime Veterans may also qualify for a monthly cash payment. Veterans or surviving spouses who need care on a regular basis are eligible for a higher payment (often referred to as “Aid and Attendance,” payments of which can be over $2,000 per month, depending on marital status and care needs.

What you need to know about continuing care retirement communities

Life plan communities, often referred to as continuing care retirement communities (CCRCs), are an increasingly popular choice of aging Americans. These communities offer the array of care options necessary as seniors move through the stages of aging that include independent or assisted living, memory care, and skilled nursing. Beyond health care CCRCs offer a wide range of services “such as housekeeping, dining options, transportation, fitness and wellness programs, recreational activities as well as social activities and outings for residents.” It is essentially “aging in place” except in a community environment. There are approximately 2,000 CCRCs in the country as compared to about 30,000 assisted living facilities primarily because the price of a CCRC is about $3,000 to $5,000 a month. If you can and are considering joining a CCRC, there are some parameters to consider very carefully.

ABLE Accounts for People with Disabilities

Congress passed the Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act in 2014. This created tax advantaged accounts for people with disabilities. These accounts grow and are tax free. The money in the accounts can be used for qualifying expenses. Before the passing of the ABLE Act in 2014, if a person with disabilities had more than $2000 in their name, they would lose Medicaid coverage or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). ABLE accounts allow people with disabilities to have more than the $2000 in their name within the guidelines without losing these benefits.

2019 Will Bring Social Security Beneficiaries the Biggest Increase in Eight Years

The Social Security Administration has announced a 2.8 percent increase in benefits in 2019, the largest increase since 2012.