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Medicare

February 5, 2021 - 3:49pm
posted by Press Release in news, office for the aging, phone scams, Medicare, crime.

Press release from the Genesee County Office of the Aging:

Callers claiming to be from Medicare have been targeting seniors in our local area.

Please be aware:

  • Medicare will NEVER call and ask for your Medicare number.
  • If you get a call from someone promising free items, if you give them your Medicare number (can include back brace, glucose monitor, pain relievers for arthritis) -- DO NOT DO IT. This is a scam, even if they tell you it is not.
  • Refuse any offer, money, or gifts for free medical care.
  • If you see any charges on your Explanation of Benefits from Medicare, or from your Medicare Advantage provider that you do not understand, call the office from where it was billed to question the charge.
  • Most importantly – guard your card like it is a credit card. If you did not initiate the call, do not give out any information.

If you feel you may have been a victim of Medicare fraud, please call the NYS Senior Medicare Patrol at 1-800-333-4374.

June 30, 2020 - 2:06pm

Press release:

Noting that the clock is ticking, U.S. Senator Charles Schumer called on the Trump Administration to extend the nation’s public health emergency declaration first issued this past winter to address the COVID-19 pandemic.

Schumer warned that the declaration will expire on July 25th unless the feds soon act, and reminded that executive branch delay on the emergency declaration this past winter set us back in the COVID fight.

Schumer said Health and Human Services (HHS) should announce an extension ASAP and give locals across New York the reassurances they need to keep the COVID fight going. Schumer cautioned, that without action, New York stands to lose collective billions in state and local healthcare funds, FEMA disaster dollars and even tele-health services, like those for Hospice and everyday healthcare.

“If we have learned anything from COVID-19 it is that a ‘stitch in time saves nine,’ and the more we can do to be proactive, the better off the public will be,” Schumer said. “This past winter there was delay and dismissal towards those urging HHS to officially declare a public health emergency as it relates to the coronavirus.

"Well, we cannot -- and we must not -- have that kind of inaction and uncertainly now, especially with what we know and with the sustaining needs of New York. We need the public health emergency extended ASAP to keep healthcare dollars and FEMA funds flowing to this state, and we need the declaration to keep our local health departments fully supported. The clock is ticking as July dawns, so we need this action now.”

Aside from the very clear public health consequences, Schumer said New York would lose billions of dollars collectively if the Trump administration fails to extend the public health emergency declaration. Just last week, more than $300,000,000 in federal healthcare dollars were dispersed across New York State.

Those funds are part of a combined $2.5 billion in the pipeline and already secured for New York as part of the Families First Coronavirus stimulus package, which are tethered to the emergency declaration.

In addition, as of June 1, FEMA had obligated over $1.1 billion to New York under the state’s COVID Major Disaster Declaration and the agency is looking to the public health emergency declaration to define how much longer it will continue reimbursing New York, and in particular New York City, for related expenses. Should the public health emergency end, FEMA has indicated that the funds flowing from the Disaster Relief Fund will also stop.

“New York is by no means out of the woods with the coronavirus, especially given the upticks we are seeing in other states and the risk those upticks pose here when you take travel into account,” Schumer added. “Extending this declaration will keep New York positioned to both respond and to keep fighting.”

In addition, Schumer also detailed the CDC’s Infectious Disease Rapid Response Reserve Fund, which without an emergency extension would be locked up like it was before the first declaration was made at the beginning of the year. The account’s funds are being used to support local health departments and increased staffing across the city and on Long Island.

Schumer explained that these dollars could also be used by the CDC for, amongst other things:

  • Epidemiological activities, such as contact tracing and monitoring of cases;
  • Additional or enhanced screenings, like at airports;
  • Support for state and local health departments;
  • Public awareness campaigns;
  • Increased staffing.

Schumer also explained how the emergency declaration has allowed vulnerable and high-risk patients to avoid potential exposure to the coronavirus at hospitals and health centers by expanding federal eligibility to receive routine care through telehealth and digital care.

Federal support and coverage for this type of medical care has saved countless lives because clinicians can use tele-health to fulfill many face-to-face visit requirements to see patients, says Schumer, adding that this has been one of the main requests of in inpatient rehabilitation facilities, hospice and home health professionals who are now using apps with audio and video capabilities to have patients visit with their doctors or practitioners.

Finally, Schumer listed other necessities that would cease unless the public health emergency is extended:

  • Nutrition assistance for kids who would normally receive free or reduced lunch in school would cease;
  • Access to SNAP would be restricted;
  • Seniors who rely on Meals on Wheels would see their access to food restricted;
  • A massive restriction on assistance hospitals and doctors rely on to keep their doors open during the crisis;
  • Reduced access for out of work individuals to receive Pandemic Unemployment Assistance;
  • Reduced access to prescription drugs for seniors on Medicare.
October 14, 2016 - 2:45pm
posted by Billie Owens in Medicare, office for the aging, news, Announcements, healthcare.

According to a specialist in aging services and Medicare at the Genesee County Office for the Aging, "this year is utter chaos with Medicare Advantage Plans as FIVE out of six companies selling in Genesee County have dropped at least one plan."

"We have been slammed with calls (as many as 43 within hours!) from people seeking guidance on what to do," she says.

So they are holding four Medicare Open Enrollment Vendor fairs during Medicare Open Enrollment (Oct. 15 through Dec. 7) to help people sort through the maze. ​The fairs are provided through grant funds from the NYS Office for the Aging, the Federal Older Americans Act, and generous support of the Genesee County Legislature.

Charts will be available at the vendor fairs (and in the Office for the Aging) comparing ALL available plans for 2017. Reps from local Medicare Advantage Plans and AARP Medigap will be present to help attendees understand the changes for 2017. They can help sign you up if you wish to choose a different plan or company. And Medicare trained/certified counselors from the Office of the Aging will be there to answer questions and offer unbiased assistance.

The fairs are scheduled as follows:

  • Monday, Oct. 17, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., in the Paddock Room at Batavia Downs, 8315 Park Road
  • Wednesday, Nov. 2, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., in the Oakfield Community and Government Center, 3219 Drake St., Oakfield
  • Tuesday, Nov. 22, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the Office for the Aging, 2 Bank St., Batavia
  • Tuesday, Dec. 6, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at the Office for the Aging, 2 Bank St., Batavia
May 20, 2016 - 11:08am

Press release:

Beginning this week, Medicare beneficiaries will receive a letter from the Social Security Administration (SSA) if they may be eligible for help with their out-of-pocket medical and drug expenses. Genesee County Office for the Aging encourages beneficiaries who receive these letters to take action to learn more about the Medicare Savings Program (MSP) and Extra Help.

The letters are sent annually to people with Medicare with limited incomes who could be eligible for—but are not enrolled in—an MSP, which helps with Medicare out-of-pocket costs, or Extra Help, which helps with the costs of prescription drugs.

“These letters are not a scam,” said Kimberly Perl, HIICAP coordinator at the Genesee County Office for the Aging. “They are an important notification that Medicare beneficiaries should review and consider. We can help determine if they’re eligible, apply, enroll, and even understand how to use their new benefits once they’ve been approved.”

A Walk-In Day to assist potential beneficiaries has already been set on May 31st between the hours of noon and 2 p.m. at the Office for the Aging, located at 2 Bank St. downtown Batavia. Anyone receiving a letter—or who believes they or a loved one may be able to get help from these programs—should contact the Office for the Aging first at (585) 343-1611 so they may properly inform you of what you will need to bring.

In addition, Medicare beneficiaries can go online to see if they are eligible for MSPs, Extra Help and other benefits that can supplement their monthly budget. The National Council on Aging’s BenefitsCheckUp® is a free, confidential screening tool that can connect older and adults and younger adults with disabilities to these programs. Learn more at BenefitsCheckUp.org.

January 28, 2015 - 10:22am
Event Date and Time: 
November 16, 2015 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm

Will you be new to Medicare due to age or disability by May 2016?

Thinking of retiring, but not certain what the next steps are?

Attend the LAST session of 2015 and learn all about Medicare!

Next session will not be until March 2016!

Held at the Office for the Aging - 2 Bank Street, Batavia

Reservations are NOT required!

 

January 28, 2015 - 10:16am
Event Date and Time: 
October 22, 2015 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm

Will you be new to Medicare soon due to age or disability?

Thinking of retiring, but not certain what the next steps are?

Attend one of our sessions and learn all about Medicare!

Held at the Office for the Aging - 2 Bank Street, Batavia

Reservations NOT required!

 

January 28, 2015 - 10:01am
Event Date and Time: 
August 25, 2015 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm

Will you be new to Medicare soon because of age or disability?

Thinking of retiring, but not certain what the next steps are?

Attend ONE of our sessions and learn about Medicare!

All sessions are held at the Genesee County Office for the Aging -

2 Bank Street, Batavia - and begin at 6pm

Reservations are NOT required.

January 21, 2015 - 4:48pm
Event Date and Time: 
July 27, 2015 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm

Will you be new to Medicare soon because of age or disability?

Thinking of retiring, but not certain what the next steps are?

Attend one of our sessions and learn about Medicare!

All sessions are free and are held at the Genesee County Office for the Aging—

2 Bank Street, Batavia.  All begin at 6pm.

Reservations are NOT required!

 

 

January 21, 2015 - 4:46pm
Event Date and Time: 
June 24, 2015 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm

Will you be new to Medicare soon because of age or disability?

Thinking of retiring, but not certain what the next steps are?

Attend one of our sessions and learn about Medicare!

All sessions are free and are held at the Genesee County Office for the Aging—

2 Bank Street, Batavia.  All begin at 6pm.

Reservations are NOT required!

 

 

January 21, 2015 - 4:42pm
Event Date and Time: 
May 27, 2015 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm

Will you be new to Medicare soon because of age or disability?

Thinking of retiring, but not certain what the next steps are?

Attend one of our sessions and learn about Medicare!

All sessions are held at the Genesee County Office for the Aging—

2 Bank Street, Batavia.  All begin at 6pm.

Reservations are NOT required!

 

 

January 21, 2015 - 4:40pm
Event Date and Time: 
April 29, 2015 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm

Will you be new to Medicare soon because of age or disability?

Thinking of retiring, but not certain

what the next steps are?

Attend one of our sessions

and learn about Medicare!

All sessions are free and held at the

Genesee County Office for the Aging—

2 Bank Street, Batavia.  All begin at 6pm.

Reservations are NOT required!

 

January 21, 2015 - 4:38pm
Event Date and Time: 
March 24, 2015 - 6:00pm to 8:00pm

cheeky

Will you be new to Medicare soon because of age or disability?

Thinking of retiring, but not certain

what the next steps are?

Attend one of our sessions

and learn about Medicare!

Sessions are held at the Genesee County

Office for the Aging—

2 Bank Street, Batavia and begin at 6pm.

Reservations are NOT required!

 

April 11, 2014 - 6:44pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Health Care, Medicare, NY-27, chris collins.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Collins voted today in support of the House Republican Budget, including a provision that he secured to protect Medicare Advantage from future cuts.

“I was proud to vote for a budget that makes necessary reforms and structural changes to Medicare in 2024 to strengthen the current program and sustain it for future generations,” said Congressman Collins. “To protect Medicare Advantage, I personally fought for a provision to prevent cuts to this program so many WNY seniors rely on.”

The Republican House Budget balances in 10 years, saves taxpayers $5 trillion by shrinking big government and cutting wasteful spending, and reduces the country’s historic debt.

"The House Republican Budget does what so few Washington budget proposals do – it actually balances,” Congressman Collins said. “The American people understand we cannot keep borrowing money from China to pay our bills, bankrupting our children and grandchildren’s future in the process.”

In an effort to get the economy moving and leave taxpayers with more of their hard-earned money, the House Republican Budget also includes significant tax reform, including lowering the top individual and corporate tax rates to 25 percent, and eliminating special-interest tax loopholes and the Alternative Minimum Tax. The Budget also protects Americans who have been hurt by ObamaCare.

“The GOP Budget includes tax reform to bring down rates and level the playing field for small businesses and hard working families,” Congressman Collins said. “And it relieves the burdens of ObamaCare for the countless Americans who have seen their premiums skyrocket, their coverage dropped, or their hours cut.”

“Those opposed to the GOP Budget will demonize it and suggest Congress continue to kick the can down the road. The American people want Washington to get its head out of the sand and deal with our out-of-control spending and staggering debt. The House Republican Budget does just that," continued Collins.

The House Republican Budget was passed by a vote of 219 to 205.

August 13, 2010 - 1:14pm

This entry concludes Sunday's article on the comments of Victor DeSa, M.D., who spoke to senior citizens at Batavia's First United Methodist Church last week.

Please remember, this is a summary of DeSa's presentation and does not necessarily reflect the views of The Batavian:

Medicare, Medicaid and senior services

By requiring insurance companies to expand coverage, the new health care law will drive costs up, according to DeSa. The government has told consumers that these costs will be offset by subsidies for people making less than $80,000 per year.

These subsidies will be coming, in part, from a $500 billion cut from Medicare -- and that's where senior citizens and others eligible for Medicare should be concerned.

But this is not the only problem. Both Medicare and Medicaid, which DeSa called "the original two public options," have met with disaster. Medicaid has already failed, and Medicare is on the brink of failure.

"The government has no idea how to handle the rising costs. Their idea of handling the costs is to take a machete to (the programs) and cut."

August 8, 2010 - 12:33pm

Dr. Victor DeSa talked with seniors Friday about the federal government's new health care legislation. This followed his hour-long presentation, sponsored by the "Older Adult Ministries" program of Batavia's First United Methodist Church.

DeSa is a retired surgeon who had a private practice in Batavia for many years and currently serves on the United Memorial Medical Center Board of Directors. He is well renowned and respected in the community and very knowledgeable about how the health care field works -- including the role of legislation and the relationship between health care and the government.

There is a lot of misinformation about the new health care law and how it could affect  people -- especially Medicare and Medicaid recipients.

The doctor expressed disappointment in the mainstream media's handling of the topic.

"The people in the media are not doing their job," DeSa said. "The media used to look out for the common man, but now they have a bias and a preference. (Consequently), the news we get is filtered and we don't have all the information we need in order to make informed decisions."

For those who could not be there, here's the gist of DeSa's presentation (it will be divided into two parts for the reader's convenience) -- it reflects the arguments he made based on careful and meticulous research, and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Batavian.

October 20, 2009 - 10:58am
posted by Peter O'Brien in Obamacare, Medicare.

Some on here have claimed that the private insurance agencies are demonic.  They deny care to those who need it.  But did you know that according to the American Medical Association (AMA), Medicare is worse than Aetna, Anthem/BCBS, CIGNA, Coventry, Health Net, Humana, and United Healthcare (UHC)

 

In a report claiming that "Billions of dollars in administrative waste would be eliminated each year if third party-payers sent a timely, accurate and specific response to each physician claim", the AMA (who supports Obamacare) showed us that government is the biggest denier of care. 

http://www.ama-assn.org/ama1/pub/upload/mm/368/reportcard.pdf

 

This will only get worse as more people are forced into a system they don't want. 

The Baucus bill which passed the Senate Finance Committee last week is going to tax "Cadillac" health care plans by 40%.  But the definition of a "Cadillac" plan can be redefined on a whim.  You will come to find out that most of you who have plans, have "Cadillac" plans.  And of course most unions have these plans as well.

 

But then there is the other side of the coin.

"My husband retired from IBM about a decade ago, and as we aren't old enough for Medicare we still buy our health insurance through the company. But IBM, with its typical courtesy, informed us recently that we will be fined by the state.

Why? Because Massachusetts requires every resident to have health insurance, and this year, without informing us directly, the state had changed the rules in a way that made our bare-bones policy no longer acceptable. Unless we ponied up for a pricier policy we neither need nor want—or enrolled in a government-sponsored insurance plan—we would have to pay $1,000 each year to the state."

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405274870329800457445910102233823...

 

That $1000 tax turns out to be cheaper to pay than to get the better coverage that they don't need.

There is also a provision similair to this in the Baucus bill.

 

What America needs now is to be thrifty and stop spending money that we don't have.  We don't need more taxes that will take peoples income away.  Income that could be used to to buy things people want instead of what is mandated by a bureaucrat in Washington who will not be subject to the provisions of the bill.

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