Business and Finance

Issues

Medicare’s great by U.S. standards. Compared to others, not so much.

https://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-care/medicare-s-great-u-s-standards-compared-others-not-so-n821226

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Weak federal oversight endangers health and safety of assisted living residents

GAO report shines a long-overdue light on Medicaid-funded assisted living. Federal funding of assisted living is large and growing, but to this point the federal government has not adequately ensured the quality of assisted living care. This lack of oversight has had tragic consequences for an unfortunately large number of older Americans. The GAO report was requested by a bipartisan group of senators, and its publication should prompt Congress

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ALTSA – MILLIMAN- LTSS FEASIBILITY STUDY OF POLICY OPTIONS FOR LONG TERM SERVICES AND CARE

Why support the Long-Term Care Trust Act? At some point, most of us will need some extra assistance as we age. Unfortunately, almost no one is saving enough to pay for the long-term care we need. With a rapidly expanding senior population, we need to address this growing financial crisis facing Washington’s families. The Long-Term Care Trust Act, can fix this problem. This bill creates a funding system that would help workers and retirees pay for

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Why Your Pharmacist Can’t Tell You That $20 Prescription Could Cost Only $8

As consumers face rapidly rising drug costs, states across the country are moving to block “gag clauses” that prohibit pharmacists from telling customers that they could save money by paying cash for prescription drugs rather than using their health insurance. Many pharmacists have expressed frustration about such provisions in their contracts with the powerful companies that manage drug benefits for insurers and employers. The clauses force

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Here Are the Places That Struggle to Meet the Rules on Safe Drinking Water

To ensure that tap water in the United States is safe to drink, the federal government has been steadily tightening the health standards for the nation’s water supplies for decades. But over and over again, local water systems around the country have failed to meet these requirements. In a new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers found that, since 1982, between 3 and 10 percent of the country’s

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A new milestone: 1 million senior drivers on Washington state roads

  The number of Washington state drivers age 65 or older has surged since 2010 by 41 percent — and at nearly three times the overall rate of increase among licensed drivers here.   https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/data/a-new-milestone-1-million-senior-drivers-on-washington-state-roads/

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‘Long overdue’ Alzheimer’s planner helps anyone figure out next steps

Advanced directives generally aren’t given much attention until a medical crisis descends on an individual or family. A University of Washington doctor decided to change things up. Barak Gaster, a primary-care physician at the UW School of Medicine, came up with a five-page summary of options for those who want to get ahead of an Alzheimer’s or other dementia diagnosis. His Health Directive for Dementia, available for download free online, http://bit.ly/2naq3Hi,

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Gov Inslee Urges State Congressional Delegation to Reject GOP Tax Plan

Governor Inslee sent a letter November 14, 2017 to the Washington State congressional delegation urging them to reject the Republication tax proposals being rushed through Congress.  The governor's letter, and a twelve-page memo that accompanied it, detailed a number of ways the tax plan would adversely impact Washington State. Open letter by clicking the link below:   http://www.waseniorlobby.org/wp-content/uploads/Letter-from-Gov-1.pdf

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Gov Inslee signs bill guaranteeing paid family leave in Washington

OLYMPIA — Washington state is now among a handful of states that guarantee paid family leave, after Gov. Jay Inslee’s signing Wednesday of a bipartisan plan approved by the Legislature.     http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/politics/inslee-signs-plan-for-paid-family-leave/

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Recycling is expensive in Washington. China will make it worse

Recycling is expected to grow more expensive and perhaps more limited in the coming months. That’s because China, which now accepts two-thirds of the entire world’s recyclable materials, will be stepping almost entirely out of the global market.   http://www.tri-cityherald.com/news/local/article180908816.html

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New Medicare cards are on the way

Changes are coming to your Medicare card. By April 2019, your card will be replaced with one that no longer shows your Social Security number. Instead, your card will have a new Medicare Beneficiary Identifier (MBI) that will be used for billing and for checking your eligibility and claim status.   https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/blog/2017/05/new-medicare-cards-are-way

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Nine Organizations Provide Assistance For Health Insurance Customers

The Washington Health Benefit Exchange today announced the nine lead organizations chosen to oversee in-person assistance provided to Washington residents during the upcoming open enrollment period scheduled to begin on Nov. 1. “Given the uncertainty currently surrounding healthcare, the support and communication these organizations provide is especially essential,” said Pam MacEwan, CEO of the Washington Health Benefit Exchange. “Their outreach

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Gov Inslee signs bill guaranteeing paid family leave in Washington

OLYMPIA — Washington state is now among a handful of states that guarantee paid family leave, after Gov. Jay Inslee’s signing Wednesday of a bipartisan plan approved by the Legislature. The measure offers eligible workers 12 weeks paid time off for the birth or adoption of a child or for the serious medical condition of the worker or the worker’s family member beginning in 2020, or 16 weeks for a combination of both. An additional two weeks

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How Repeal of the ACA Will Hurt Older Americans

  With a new Congress and administration taking control, Medicare, Medicaid and the Affordable Care Act (ACA) are under threat, and with them, the safety and security of adults over age 50 will be harmed.   http://www.waseniorlobby.org/wp-content/uploads/How-Repeal-of-the-ACA-will-Hurt-Older-Americans.pdf

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Health Care coverage offered to Grays Harbor and Klickitat Counties

  Earlier this month when insurers submitted their 2018 coverage plans to the Insurance Commissioner’s office, none offered to cover Klickitat and Grays Harbor counties for individual health care plans. Johnson, R-Yakima, said he’s been working with Rep. Eileen Cody, D-West Seattle, chair of the House Health Care and Wellness Committee, and stateInsurance Commissioner Mike Kriedler to address the potential lack of coverage in Klickitat

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From the Office of Financial Management: ACA

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has been life-changing for Washington state and its residents. The ACA’s broad ranging effects have benefited Washington’s residents, health industry and the state on many levels.   http://www.ofm.wa.gov/healthcare/default.asp

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OIC: How the American Health Care Act Affects Washingtonians

The American Health Care Act (www.congress.gov) passed the House on May 4. It now includes an amendment that gives states a waiver to both remove the essential health benefits and to let insurers charge sicker people more, if the state creates a high-risk pool. https://www.insurance.wa.gov/affordable-care-act

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Hearing Loss is often misunderstood or ignored

  Hearing loss is often misunderstood or ignored, and as a result is often not treated. Yet without hearing assistance, people can experience poor communication and understanding, which can lead to fractured relationships, isolation, an increased risk of illness, and even potential progression to dementia. http://r20.rs6.net/tn.jsp?f=0013qCbtZcsrf8mwd3gKVKYpO4ZTpxuYkJa0DaVk42ziHifxZo5oa003HdahVlsJtY6fanS9aCE0fD8imLgktx6n4PfhmPZ9-Br6O-fzIPpI3Yi4MineC5sJHzYWKr9VQ7xygxsrMOdAdtkm9AdC5g-Cf2Z7eNgL_ihn7gnQu_hlC4ddtFEH9obHCq9qMj1bMcJqq838cn5CLS01EpqFhzWTgUi6cxCk_hUn8b3EN3ReYCxV8tuAPIS-wmS05VW8c25-v904oPB_9Jr-jrI8xryofFjXXDZuzswN-2mxh0OZcq7SR7r9ou6csWia8iNaDQglXWUEQQbBsu2zeQR4fXE0iAeUxRPPPE7t__EPx6mIq4y_a6-J4gHixQOPEGzoTAs-88Wnyjq64TnjxQcDRuYWW1gEraujEN35g7BO11EY7KcgnwDAZccRuwod3UoeO4Wg6X_DsvQDnU=&c=i2UES1v3GQIpPGhnCOdMMqIloMaTauDhrXJL_YIUEC72OFJVymlA_A==&ch=CEdVgyfjCY5-0GsOc-QAXN3SpLdt2V4Y2jw-4rxSI6u3R2E3PYlwzA==

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YOUR GUIDE TO MEDICARE’S PREVENTIVE SERVICES

Now's the time to get the most out of your Medicare. The best way to stay healthy is to live a healthy lifestyle. You can live a healthy lifestyle and prevent disease by exercising, eating well, keeping a healthy weight, and not smoking. Medicare can help.   https://www.medicare.gov/Pubs/pdf/10110.pdf

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Variations In Life Expectancy and Mortality Rates by State LD, 2012-2014

This is a recent publication from the Health Care Research Center of WA Office of Financial Management.  (please click above)  This is a lengthy report and will take a minute or so to load.

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