Respiratory Help Is Available For Seniors With COPD
As HMOs Continue to Drop Coverage for Seniors - Now Over 500,000 Victims - Those Needing Expensive Respiratory Medication, Support and Homecare Services are the Hardest Hit
One Patient Advocate, Geriatric Services of America, is Providing Relief to Victimized Patients Through a Unique, Often No-Cost Program
More than 536,000 US senior citizens are scrambling to find new doctors or new coverage because their health plans terminated their Medicare managed-care services, according to a Nonrenewal Report issued by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services for the year 2002. Among the hardest hit are seniors in California (84,000), Florida (59,000), Pennsylvania (55,000), New Jersey (53,000), Texas (46,000), and Michigan (31,000), who will be losing coverage in the coming year. Even those with continuing coverage face substantial premium hikes and dwindling drug benefits. Particularly hard hit will be those with chronic illnesses such as respiratory disease, who will bear the brunt of high medication and healthcare costs.
Though all seniors 65 and older are covered by Medicare, those enrolled in managed-care programs agree to see doctors within a limited network and receive additional benefits, such as preventative care and prescription-drug coverage. The current coverage crisis stems from rising delivery costs and limited government reimbursement, as doctors and hospitals increasingly balk at seeing Medicare HMO patients, since they aren't sufficiently reimbursed for their services. Without enough doctors and hospitals providing care, an HMO can't serve its members. The problem is worst in large urban markets, where more than half of Medicare + Choice beneficiaries live nationwide but where reimbursement rate increases have trailed rising costs since 1997.
To compensate for the funding shortfall, premiums for seniors retaining Medicare HMO coverage are expected to spike while benefits dwindle in the coming year. In California's Sacramento-area, for example, monthly premiums for Kaiser Permanente's Senior Advantage Medicare Plan will double from $40 to $80 starting Jan. 1st. Healthnet, following suit, is raising premiums 50 percent, from $40 to $60 per month for its Seniority Plus members in the area. Pacificare and Western Health Advantage, while holding monthly premiums at $50 in their Sacramento-area Medicare plans, will eliminate brand name drug coverage next year.
Across the nation, seniors caught between rising premiums and shrinking coverage will find themselves in a similar bind. Even those with Medigap policies will feel the squeeze. Medigap policies A through J, for instance, have minimum standard benefit packages, and the H, I, and J plans covering prescriptions have annual drug caps ranging from $1,250 to $2,000.
For the 30 million Americans with a Chronic Obstruction Pulmonary Disease (COPD) such as asthma, emphysema or cystic fibrosis - collectively the fourth leading cause of death in the US, however, help is available with Geriatric Services of America (GSA), a national community service organization based in Tempe, Arizona which provides direct help and support to older Americans suffering from chronic respiratory disease. Through its Respiratory Disease Control Program, GSA provides access to a comprehensive range of special medication benefits, as well as support and homecare services, which eliminates out-of-pocket expenses for patients with primary or supplemental insurance coverage.
Through GSA's patient support center, nebulizers and respiratory medication are provided and paid for with free home delivery, conveniently packaged and ready to use. GSA handles all paperwork, and clinical Patient Care Coordinators work with doctors and insurance companies once a patient has enrolled in the Respiratory Disease Control Program. Patients can enroll themselves in the program; there is nothing to buy, and no enrollment or membership fees.
Currently, Medicare, AARP, Blue Cross, Blue Shield, and over 180 other insurers have special benefits for patients with respiratory disease. GSA provides access to these benefits, and coordinates all elements of care to help patients, doctors, and insurance companies combat respiratory disease.
At a time when US seniors face restricted health care access, rising premiums, and shrinking benefits, GSA stands out as a welcome ally for those needing respiratory medication benefits, support, or homecare services. For more information about GSA, or how someone you know can enroll in this special wellcare program, write to 4812 South Mill Ave., Tempe, AZ 85282; call 800-307-8048; fax 800-345-2425; or email Gary Rheault directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About The Author
Del Williams is a technical writer based in Torrance, California.
How To Find Affordable Senior Housing
A few years ago Miranda M. became a widow. After a short time her grandson (her only available relative) persuaded her to move across several states to be closer to him.
Review of the Changing Protein Requirements for Seniors
Youth, it is said, is wasted on the young. Too busy figuring life they hardly take the time to enjoy it. Fortunately, with medical research and scientific progress, lifespans have doubled over the last century. We can now start life at fifty and have another go at youth. Health consciousness, appropriate diet and exercise, can make the later years of life a pleasant experience. Dietary principles play as especially important role in this regard. Compensating for the physiological changes of aging, they can give us better odds at achieving our genetically determined lifespans.
New Hope for Alzheimers Treatment
There is now widespread agreement among research scientists and medical professionals that Alzheimer's Disease (AD) is a problem quickly growing to vast proportions. As the life expectancy of Americans continues to rise, increasing the percentage of the population over 65 years of age, so does the number of Alzheimer's cases.
Caring for Aging Relatives
It happens somewhat slowly in the beginning, maybe with a small cough that gets worse as time goes on. It might simply begin with absent mindedness which is totally out of character, followed by total memory lapses. What do we do when our parents eventually need taking care of after they have spent so much of their adult lives taking care of us? What precisely is a child's responsibility to them? Is it self-centered to relocate them into an assisted home? And which siblings should shoulder the responsibility? These are questions which plague families whenever a parent happens to become sick.
10 Tips to Keep a Family Caregiver from Losing Their Mind
Caring full time for a loved one can be a challenging task, and it takes a special person to get the job done right. Patience and compassion are the two top qualities a caregiver must possess in order to be successful. Caring for someone who suffers from Alzheimer's disease or other forms of dementia can be an uphill battle at times. This requires planning on behalf of the caregiver in order to keep from burning out. The following are useful tips on how to remain a hardworking caregiver while maintaining your sanity:
Stair Lifts - Straight and Curved Rails
There are two types of stairlift. Straight and curved. The first is designed for straight stairs. The footrest of the lift will normally stop level with the top stair. It may be possible to use a straight stairlift on some configurations of curved stairs.
Senior Living: 5 Ways to Help Reduce the Risk of Falling
Every year we hear stories of seniors falling, ending up in hospitals and never fully recovering. Unfortunately, these falls often result in death. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), falls are the leading cause of injury related deaths for seniors age 65 and older. Every year, approximately 35% to 40% of seniors over 65 years of age fall at least one time. The following are five ways to help reduce the risk of you or a loved one from falling:
Long Term-Care; 70 Million Americans Will Be Over 65 by 2003
We will all grow old; this is a given. We will all have health issues as we grow older, this also is a given. Many people work their whole lives and if they are smart end up with a paid for house and a little nest egg for retirement. This is a good 15% of the population. Good for us as we have a strong middle-class. But whether you are rich or poor there will come a time when you need long-term care. As a matter of fact statistics show tat 10% of use will need long-term care for 3-5 years.
Advocate For Senior Citizens ? Protecting Against Abuse and Fraud
Ruth is 87 years old this year and has been living alone since 1997. She is in good health, however the daily chores around the home became increasingly difficult. Ruth turned to her church bulletin and found a 'Home Care Company' advertised.
What You Need to Know About Helping Senior Citizens
5 Myths You Should Know Before Choosing Elder Care
Myths associated with selecting quality nursing home care suggest quick and easy ways to identify quality care. In fact, relying on these myths can lead to disastrous results. I have identified a few of the most common myths in hopes of helping you avoid some of the problems commonly found in many nursing homes.
Just Give Them a Lot of Love and You?ll be Fine
It was right about this time, 19 years ago. My wife and I were sitting in the very last Lamaze birthing class, soon to be brand new parents. I felt a wave of anxiety come over me. I had to ask the question. I raised my hand. The Nurse, her name was Dorinda, pointed at me and said, "Yes, you have a question." Did I have a question? I just knew EVERY Dad was wondering the same thing? "You have given us some great information, almost too much. I am afraid I am going to forget all this stuff?then what?" I could feel the other Dad's nodding. She smiled; she was very wise and patient. She had taught thousands of new Dads. "That's a great question," pausing for effect, she continued, "That little baby doesn't know you don't know. Just give him a lot of love, you will be fine." It turned out to be the best parenting advice I ever received.
Arizona Assisted Living: Resident Rights
According to the Arizona Administrative Code (R9-10-710), those who reside in assisted living facilities in Arizona have certain rights. In addition to having the right to live in an environment that promotes dignity, independence, self-determination, individuality, privacy and the right of choice, the following are a few of the rights given to residents who reside in assisted living facilities:
Who Wants to End Up in a Nursing Home? NO ONE!
As a long-term care consultant for seniors and their families I have visited many different types of facilities. But my favorite type of facility to visit is adult family homes.
Board and Care Homes ? What Are They?
Board and Care homes (also known as RCFE's - Residential Care Facilities for the Elderly) are residential private homes that have been licensed by the Department of Social Services to provide services to seniors. Most accept no more than six residents, but offer a cozy, home-like setting for frail seniors. At least one caregiver is on the premises at all times to assist residents.
Baby Boomers: Will They Be Able to Afford Their Parents?
Do you worry about whether your aging parents have their "affairs in order?" You should. After all, you're the one who will have to pay unnecessary taxes and endure time-consuming court procedures if your parents don't have an effective estate plan. Without some forethought on their part and your part, you could be facing a lot of wasted time and money in addition to a lot of frustration. All of the waste and frustration can easily be avoided.
When Assistance with Long Term Care Becomes Necessary
According to the Administration on Aging, it is estimated by 2030, the older population will more than double to approximately 71.5 million. It is also estimated that between 39 to 49 percent of people will use nursing home services during their lifetime. Unfortunately, there may come a time when your loved one may require assistance with long term care. The following is a list of warning signs one should be aware of when evaluating your loved one's situation. If the senior exhibits two or more of these signs, assistance is likely required:
Strategies on Paying for Nursing Home Care and Medicaid
The decision to place your loved one into a nursing home is anextremely difficult decision, often causing much guilt for thecaregiver. It is a very emotional decision for most clients we see andmost are under a certain amount of stress, often great, when facing whatthey consider to be a drastic course of action.
Scaling Down (almost) Painlessly
Moving to a smaller house or apartment in a retirement community almost always involves a certain degree of trauma, both for the elder who's moving and for family members. However, by planning ahead you can reduce the discomfort involved and turn what might well become a nightmare into a pleasant event.
Arizona Senior Housing: Care Options for Seniors Who Can No Longer Live Alone
The following are a few of the care options available for seniors who can no longer live on their own and require assistance with their Activities of Daily Living (ADL), or require skilled nursing care. Every state is a little different in terms of availability and cost, state regulations, and the specific names used for each care option:
|© Athifea Distribution LLC - 2013|