Business and Finance

Issues

Phone Scams Against the Elderly

The Senate Special Committee on Aging held a hearing on the increase in the number of unwanted telephone calls, often pressure-laden scams, targeting the elderly. These types of calls had increased, despite the enactment of laws allowing consumers to opt out of unsolicited telephone marketing calls. http://www.c-span.org/video/?326507-1/hearing-unwanted-telephone-calls-scams

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Retirement Security Crisis

We have a retirement security crisis in America that threatens the middle class and people working their way into it. Americans are less prepared for retirement today than in decades and the overwhelming majority of people are anxious about their ability to retire. http://www.waseniorlobby.org/wp-content/uploads/WHCoA_One_Pager.pdf

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Joint Legislative Executive Committee on Aging & Disability Issues – 2015 Addendum Report

This document comprises the first requirement of the Committee: an addendum report due to the legislature by December 10, 2015. The second requirement mandates that the Committee issue final recommendations by December 10, 2016. As required by ESSB 6052, the addendum report to the legislature must include the following: 1. A description of the oversight role for Residential Care Services, the Long-Term Care Ombuds, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid

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Dental group defends mercury fillings amid mounting evidence of risks

For decades, the American Dental Association has resolutely defended the safety of mercury fillings in the teeth of more than 100 million Americans, even muzzling dentists who dared to warn patients that such fillings might make them sick. The association has lobbied the Food and Drug Administration to ensure the fillings, which contain one of the world’s most menacing toxins, receive a government seal of safety and wouldn’t be tightly regulated.

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State elected officials write in support of Skagit County nursing homes

State elected officials have voiced support for the skilled nursing homes in Skagit County, requesting that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services adjust the county’s wage index. The wage index in part determines reimbursement rates for care provided by the nursing homes. The requested adjustment would mean the reimbursement rates would increase. http://www.goskagit.com/all_access/state-elected-officials-write-in-support-of-skagit-county-nursing/article_8647da13-e36f-5e37-8069-647016b9c97e.html

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Major changes coming for Medicare this year

Whether it’s coverage for end-of-life counseling or an experimental payment scheme for common surgeries, Medicare in 2016 is undergoing some of the biggest changes in its 50 years. Grandma’s Medicare usually just paid the bills as they came in. Today, the nation’s flagship health care program is seeking better ways to balance cost, quality and access.   http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2016/jan/04/major-changes-coming-for-medicare-this-year/

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Washington State Budget Update From 2015 Senior Lobby Fall Conference

Schumacher Budget Update Presentation

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State dentists lobby is blocking low-cost care

Dental health for the poor is a big problem in Washington state. Some see dental therapists — licensed professionals who can perform simple procedures — as a route to less expensive care. But the powerful state dentists association has thwarted efforts to allow the therapists. http://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/times-watchdog/washington-dentists-lobby-is-blocking-low-cost-care/

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November 6, 2015 WA St Legislature Joint Comm On Veterans & Military Affairs

Joint Committee On Veterans' and Military Affairs agenda 11-6-15    WAStLeg-JCVMA 2015 Joint Committee on Veterans and Military Affairs 12-16-2015  agenda 3 Military Installations and Civilian Land Use Compatibility 12-16-2015

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After the Asylum: How America’s Trying to Fix Its Broken Mental Health System

Patients with mental illness are being detained in emergency rooms, often for weeks at a time. Now some states are rethinking the entire psychiatric care system. BY J.B. WOGAN | DECEMBER 2015 http://www.governing.com/topics/health-human-services/gov-mental-health-boarding.html

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More Than A Name Change At Stake In Group Health-Kaiser Deal

If Kaiser Permanente wins approval to acquire Group Health, it will mark more than the loss of another Seattle institution. Group Health was a model for how we might push back against money driven health care. http://www.seattletimes.com/business/more-than-a-name-change-at-stake-in-group-health-kaiser-deal/  

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Karma Bites Back: Hating on the elderly may put you at risk of Alzheimer’s

Next time you're stuck behind a slow-moving older person and find yourself entertaining negative stereotypes about aging, consider this: A new study finds that people who were inclined to believe that older people were slower, unhappier and less sharp than the rest of us are more likely -- when, decades later, they become older themselves -- to exhibit the brain changes seen in those with Alzheimer's disease. http://www.latimes.com/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-negative-aging-alzheimers-brain-20151207-story.html

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Senior Group Examines Statewide Progress, Challenges

Senior Group Examines Statewide Progress, Challenges by Janine Gates (click to read article)

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Financial Abuse of the Elderly: Sometimes Unnoticed, Always Predatory

Mariana Cooper, 86,with her granddaughter, Amy Lecoq, 39. Ms. Cooper was bilked out of much of her savings by someone she considered a friend. Credit Ruth Fremson/The New York Times With 10,000 people turning 65 every day for the next decade, a growing pool of retirees are susceptible to such exploitation. As many as one in 20 older adults said they were financially mistreated in the recent past, according to a study financed by the Justice Department.

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What Banks Are Doing to Halt Elder Abuse

An increasing number of banks and credit unions are implementing fraud-prevention initiatives to prepare for the onslaught of aging Americans expected to developAlzheimer’s disease. They are training tellers “to flag potential suspicious behavior, such as coercion by family members, frequent withdrawals of large sums of money in a short period of time or transferring large sums of money,” said Ramsay Alwin, vice president of economic security

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Future tab for retiree health care balloons

Surgeons have operated on Wanda Riley’s hands and replaced both her knees, one of her hips and both her shoulders. “That’s it,” the 85-year-old retired state employee recalls saying after the latest surgery. “I’m not doing any more operations. Of course, there’s hardly anything left to operate on.” Yet, Riley considers herself lucky. Her health insurance covered the procedures and never sent her a bill. The state helps with her monthly

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Coming Full Circle to Help Her Elders

Older adults, primarily victimized by their adult children or grandchildren and often frail with some kind of cognitive impairment, can make terrible witnesses. It’s those same factors that make them such vulnerable prey. Elder abuse victims often enter the shelter in crisis, with just the clothes on their back, no money and no access to their financial information. Some become long-term residents, finding friendship, romance, love; some are reunited

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Are Good Doctors Bad for Your Health?

“Get me the best cardiologist” is our natural response to any heart problem. Unfortunately, it is probably wrong. Surprisingly, the right question is almost its exact opposite: At which hospital are all the famous, senior cardiologists away? One of the more surprising — and genuinely scary — research papers published recently appeared in JAMA Internal Medicine. It examined 10 years of data involving tens of thousands of hospital admissions.

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Aging Boomers Face Big Threat From Alzheimer’s

As the baby boomers age, the increasing number of patients with Alzheimer’s disease will take a serious toll on caregivers and families, and the costs associated with that care are expected to weigh heavily on the nation’s health care system. A new study projects that the disease will be responsible for 25 percent of all Medicare spending by 2040. http://www.nextavenue.org/aging-boomers-face-big-threat-from-alzheimers/

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Purposeful Aging: A Model for a New Life Course

This article is part of Next Avenue’s 2015 Influencers in Aging  project honoring 50 people changing how we age and think about aging. Paul H. Irving was a member of the 2015 Influencers In Aging Advisory Panel. “Thousands of baby boomers each day surge into their 60s and 70s,” he wrote in a recent article for The Wall Street Journal. “It’s time to focus on enriching lives, not just lengthening them; on providing purpose and productivity,

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