43 Forum: Aging and Disability Resources - 19 Action News|Cleveland, OH|News, Weather, Sports

43 Forum: Aging and Disability Resources

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CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) -

As more and more people are turning 60, 65 all the time senior citizens are a growing population.

The population of senior citizens is booming right now and there are issues confronting them as they age.

It becomes difficult for people as they age to lose their independence. Eventually it becomes a necessity to provide a certain service and level of care.

Donald Heel, a program coordinator at the Metro Heal Benefits Enrollment Center, talks about assistance for the elderly and an upcoming phone back.

Also joining in conversation is Smith Crafton, the project coordinator for the Western Reserve Area Agency on Aging.

He is here to talk about the history of that organization. 

There are ways to make life better and more comfortable as people age.

Programs that are set up focused for them to maintain a healthy quality of life. Food and financial insecurity is an issue that many over 60 face.

The Aging and Disability Resource Network (ADRN ) acts as an advocate for the aging. Every region in every state has ADRN. This is a network approach to making resources accessible. This is like a front door, first aid, to turn for information.

There are 1, 300 federal state and local programs out there that meet with elderly and disabled to screen them to see what programs of assistance they are eligible.  If a person is deemed disabled for more than two years they can be eligible for Medicaid.

Medicare covers about 80% of doctors visits, leaving 20% out of pocket. Medicaid usually covers all medical expenses for low income people.

For the ADRN there is a big focus on home and community based services, such as receiving a personal aid at home to help with activities of daily living. There are also socialization programs to help people get out of the house and getting together with others their age in social situations.

The ADRN is about empowering and educating the elderly and their families to help them create a plan which encompasses the support available to them as they age. This type of service enables people to continue aging with the comfort of a plan suited to meet their needs.

Examples of resources to be aware of when planning for a more comfortable future, is a food stamp program that utilizes a discrete debit card for those with modest financial means. Within the financial planning for the elderly is the ability to waive a $105 premium that is now being deducted from social security. The ARDN advises and can assist in helping qualified people with waiving that $105 dollar premium which then could be placed towards prescriptions and food they need.  

A phone bank at WOIO will be hosted in April to help direct the elderly and others seeking resources to help them.

All callers who have issues and don't know where to turn are welcome to call. The motto being; when in doubt find it out.

Questions will be fielded or referred to a place that can help.

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