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How to get help from Social Security during the coronavirus pandemic
4/3/2020 3:31:16 PM

Dear Savvy Senior, I’ve heard that the Social Security Administration has closed all their offices because of the coronavirus pandemic. How are they accommodating people while they’re closed down? Recently Retired   Dear Recently, Yes, that’s correct. The Social Security Administration has closed its 1,200 field offices throughout the country to protect benefit recipients and workers from the coronavirus pandemic. Their offices have been closed since March 17. How long they will be closed is unclear. It will depend on the course of the...

Providing help and hope to our children in this time of great crisis
4/3/2020 2:36:30 PM

By Marian Wright Edelman   As COVID-19 spreads across our nation more communities and families need help and hope every day. Today Congress passed a $2 trillion relief package that was a critical step toward easing some the burdens of this crisis for millions of children and families. Among its provisions, it will provide low- and middle-income earners one time cash payments of $1,200 per adult and $500 per child; more support for low-income renters, protections against foreclosures and evictions, grants for homelessness assistance, and temporary shelter and services for...

Greetings from the edge of reality
4/1/2020 6:37:53 PM

By Chris Frost chris@tricountysentry.com   Oxnard-- So, here are some thoughts that are rambling through my head as I continue to stay locked up in my home.    First of all, I hope that everyone is safe and healthy. Keep practicing your social distancing. It makes a difference.     With all that said, some things make me worry once we get past this pandemic. I've noticed all the commercials on television that promote delivery and web orders available. I hope people do not develop new shopping habits and give up shopping on Main...

Feds announce Medicare will cover coronavirus testing
3/26/2020 4:06:03 PM

WASHINGTON—As the coronavirus is spreading nationally and globally, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced early in March that Medicare will cover coronavirus testing. All COVID-19 tests ordered by your doctor or other health care provider will be covered under Medicare Part B as a diagnostic laboratory test, and therefore has no out-of-pocket costs. Coverage can be back dated to February 4, 2020, and providers must wait until April 1, 2020 to submit their bills to Medicare.   Guidance to Medicare Advantage & Part D Plans Medicare...

House leaders introduce bills to improve COBRA for Medicare eligible
3/26/2020 4:04:08 PM

By Karen Fletcher   “Many retirees are unexpectedly exposed to out-of-pocket liability for any costs paid under COBRA benefits on or after date of Medicare eligibility and penalties for late enrollment in Medicare. Some of this risk would be eliminated if COBRA notices addressed the interaction with Medicare, and vice versa. Unfortunately, such information is not required under either Medicare or COBRA, and thus, transparency and clear information about the interaction between the two is lacking.”   WASHINGTON—The above is a quote from a recent...

Former President Obama reflects on 10-year ACA anniversary
3/26/2020 4:03:19 PM

By Barack Obama   RETIREMENT—The events of the past month remind us that as a community, we all have an obligation to look out for one another. Ten years ago today, I signed the Affordable Care Act into law for that reason—that as Americans, we all deserve quality, affordable care. As Americans, we take care of each other. When I ran for President in 2008, one of the first promises I made was that I would pass a law that moved us toward universal health care in my first term. It was a pledge informed by the stories I heard on the campaign trail and...

As pandemic intensifies, millions of seniors live in counties without ICU beds
3/26/2020 3:56:42 PM

By Kaiser Health News   WASHINGTON—More than half the counties in America have no intensive care beds, posing a particular danger for more than 7 million people who are age 60 and up—older patients who face the highest risk of serious illness or death from the rapid spread of COVID-19, a Kaiser Health News data analysis shows. Intensive care units have?sophisticated equipment, such as bedside machines to monitor a patient’s heart rate and ventilators to help them breathe. Even in communities with ICU beds, the numbers vary wildly—with?some having...

The world stops and we all go home
3/26/2020 8:01:13 AM

By Chris Frost chris@tricountysentry.com Oxnard-- Now that we are supposed to stay at home due to the coronavirus, I thought I would offer some tips to make your time at home with your significant other more enjoyable.   First of all, I hope everyone is good, and you're taking all the necessary steps to remain safe. If you need to go out and get supplies, please be safe and practice social distancing. I keep watching my email for any updates, and when I get one, you get it. I'll keep you informed about the latest developments.   With all that said,...

Don't panic and be smart
3/20/2020 2:03:22 PM

By Chris Frost chris@tricountysentry.com Oxnard-- I hope everyone is safe and taking good care, so they don't get sick with the coronavirus. If you're at risk, take extra special care.    That includes me, unfortunately, as I am a type 1 diabetic and have a compromised immune system. That is a dilemma for me. There are so many stories to tell in a city that tries to grapple with a pandemic.    For example, grocery shopping is a nightmare right now. Food supplies are dwindling at the store I go to. I need to get in touch with those stores...

Study: fish consumption during pregnancy pays off
3/19/2020 4:14:40 PM

LOS ANGELES (CNS)—A USC-led study released Monday found that children whose mothers ate fish one to three times a week during pregnancy were more likely to have a better metabolic profile—despite the risk of exposure to mercury—than youngsters whose mothers rarely ate fish. "Fish is an important source of nutrients, and its consumption should not be avoided," said Leda Chatzi, associate professor of preventive medicine at the Keck School of Medicine at USC and the senior investigator on the study. "But pregnant women should stick to one to three...