My friend Kalamitykelli reblogged this post and I too have wonderful memories of it. It has a military theme and I hope you enjoy it. Happy 4th of July!!

eBook Winners!

 

Congratulations to Stephanie H. and Debbie C.!

You each won a copy of Taking Care of Mom and Dad.

Your prize will be emailed to you shortly and you will have 48 hours to download your ebook!

Thank you to everyone who entered!

Even if you did not win please take a moment to check out the ebook!

Great Article in NY Times…and, a little more info.

The Affordable Health Care Act was upheld by the Supreme Court yesterday with each state having the option of whether to expand Medicaid or not. Many states’ Governors, including the gov. in my state, has denounced the decision and said they are each considering NOT accepting Medicaid expansion – the expansion is a requirement for the 100% financial pick up of Affordable Care Act (ACA) costs the first few years and then 90% after that. They say they cannot afford the expansion of Medicaid and it’s expansion……….nice try. This is a lot of smoke and mirrors as they pander to the most financially conservative of their state residents.

I’m not making a political statement at all so please do not mistake this for one. This is purely financial and state government knowledge. Medicaid is paid through matching funds between the state and the federal government. The state portion is determined based on the economy of the state – how well the state is doing financially. My state is one of the more financially solvent states and has not suffered as much during the recession like many other states, mostly because of our oil production. Our state’s match is about 68/32 which means that for every Medicaid dollar spent in our state – the feds pay $.68 cents and our state pays $.32 cents. So, as an economically stable state we pay 1/3 of medicaid costs – the states who are worse off economically pay even less. Another thing to consider is that those who are not currently covered, remain ill longer and then one day the MUST go to the ER or clinic or some other medical facility and then the state will have to pick up 100% of the costs.

The ACA will expand mostly waivers and those waivers target mostly the elderly and disabled of the United States. Paid at 100%. These are the most costly eligibles there are…….Hmmm…. Really? The other thing about costs that are paid 100% by the feds (Child Day Care and SNAP – formerly Food Stamps are both 100% reimbursement) is that if our state decides not to take it then other states get even more, because that money is going to go somewhere. I remember when former California Governor Schwartzenegger went into office. He fussed and fumed about how the state was broke and how he was going to cut off the “free lunch” of Food Stamps. I remember thinking that he was either the stupidiest governor ever or he had the most stupid advisers ever. And then someone explained to him how Food Stamps really work and who they REALLY benefit (grocery store owners, farmers, and trucking companies) the most. Soon he was touting the program and seeking out any and everyone in California who would qualify in order to apply for the Food Stamp Benefit.

Since ACA will work much like Food Stamps and those who will benefit the MOST will be hospitals, clinics, private physician’s offices, and health therapy facilities – I would say all this strutting and posturing of governors is just that. Either they already know this is financially sound to help their states out of the mess they are already in, or one of their advisers will get to them and educated them PDQ. Then they will release a statement saying their hands are tied, and they are forced to take the money. And then they will.

In the end, it will help the elderly and disabled the most and they ARE the most costly folks in the Medicaid system. So whatever your feelings are about the Affordable Care Act, it is coming and we should prepare for the inevitable.

You can find the NY Times article here: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/30/us/politics/some-states-reluctant-over-medicaid-expansion.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1&nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_th_20120630

Help with Utility Bills in this Summer Heat

***I’m sorry I have been out of pocket for several days. An old back injury has had me under the weather.****

It was announced last week that LIHEAP (Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program) funds were released by the President. This is for any person who meets certain guidelines in order to pay their summer heating bill. The funds are not always released during the summer but this year, they have been. One of the categories is for seniors 60 years old and older or any disabled adult. There are other target markets who are eligible to apply as well. This website: http://www.liheap.org/
is incredible! Go there, click on yours or your loved one’s state and information specific to that state will appear including income guidelines, where to apply, how to apply, and what to bring. It may or may not tell you when – but simply call the number listed in that area and ask when the first day to apply will be. They will tell you. Generally, it is between July 9 and August 1.

This year, in Oklahoma, applications will begin on July 9 at the local OKDHS offices. It is on a first come, first served basis so you must go quickly and early on the first day because they only have so much money.

The money – $150 for one person and $200 for a two-person household, is paid directly to the electric company. If there is less bill than allotment, it will carry over to the next month until the funds are spent. This money is meant to encourage seniors and others to use air conditioning in order to stay healthy!

Go check it out now!!

Kindle eBook Raffle: Taking Care of Mom and Dad

Writing, Reading, and Eating is hosting a giveaway of my new book Taking Care of Mom and Dad: A Baby Boomer’s Resource Guide.

You can go over there and find multiple ways to enter the raffle. Don’t forget to take a moment to look around Writing, Reading, and Eating. You just might find something you like.

The raffle ends on June 30, 2012.

Good luck!

Excellent Article from Denver Post

This link leads to a newspaper article by Kevin Simpson of the Denver Post.  He writes about Jose and Phil Gallegos as well as Phil’s wife Claudia.  Phil and Claudia are Baby Boomers who took in Jose, Phil’s dad, after his mother’s death last year.  This is a poignant story about coming to terms with role reversal and new family adjustments.  Read it, you will enjoy it!

http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_20875209/aging-boomers-take-parents-roles-reverse

But how am I supposed to do THAT?

Oftentimes, a caregiver is thrust into service when a loved one experiences a health event that is sudden and possibly non-recoverable.  There are often many questions, such as:  How do I communicate now that dad can no longer speak?  With mom bedfast, how in the world am I supposed to bathe and wash her hair?  What is a gait belt and how is it used?

Good news!  I’ve got something that will help you and it is absolutely free as well as accessible 24 hours per day seven days per week!  I will even provide the links for you.  This program, a joint venture between the Oklahoma Department of Human Services Aging Services Division, Redlands Community College, and MetLife set up a website where caregiving information is warehoused and a part of that are some demonstration videos along with power point training on specific questions and concerns of caregivers universally.  For instance,

If you have questions about how to properly wash your hands and keep infection down, click on this link: http://www.oklahomapca.org/2011/07/28/infection-control/

If you have questions about how to communicate with your loved one now that they have experienced some verbal, hearing, or memory incident, go here:  http://www.oklahomapca.org/2011/07/27/communication/

If you have concerns about how to turn a bedfast person or give them a proper bed bath, you can find the answers here:  http://www.oklahomapca.org/2011/07/27/bed-rest-essentials/

Do you wonder what a gait belt is, when to use it and how to use it correctly go here:  http://www.oklahomapca.org/2011/07/27/bed-rest-essentials/

Finally, if your loved one is supposed to have their blood pressure and heart rate taken regularly but you don’t know how to do it you can see a demonstration here:  http://www.oklahomapca.org/2011/07/28/vital-signs/

There is a great deal of information on the website that appears to be exclusive to Oklahoma but is not.  So, if you have questions please go to the home page at http://www.oklahomapca.org  and surf around within the website, I bet you can find what you need!

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