Jinny Scifres Memorial Scholarship Applications Available

The Washington County Community Foundation will be accepting applications for the Jinny Scifres Scholarship. The scholarship is for any individual planning to attend a post-secondary accredited institution in the 2017-2018 school year and plans to pursue studies in the medical field.  The scholarship payout this year is $1600.00.  The number and dollar amount of scholarships will be determined by the committee. Preference may be given to non-traditional nursing students who may be returning to school after starting a family or career, as did Jinny. 

After starting a family, Jinny made the tough decision to return to school and study nursing. After graduation, she began her nursing career at Washington County Memorial Hospital as an Emergency Room Nurse.  Jinny’s love of nursing eventually lead her to several promotions and back to school once again.  She eventually became the Director of Patient Care Services.

Jinny died in the fall of 2000, after bravely battling bone cancer. Her family and many friends established this scholarship fund in her memory, to assist others who, like Jinny, return to school to study nursing after starting a family or career.  

For questions or an application, please contact Judy or Lindsey at 812-883-7334 or program.officer@wccf.biz.  Applications are due by April 15, 2017 at 3:30.

Washington County Community Foundation is a nonprofit public charity established in 1993 to serve donors, award grants, and provide leadership to improve Washington County forever

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WCCF is Offering Scholarships to Non-Traditional Students

The Washington County Community Foundation is now offering scholarships to non-traditional students through its Education Matters initiative. 

Education Matters is a regional undertaking organized by the community foundations that serve Washington, Scott, Harrison, Clark and Floyd counties to try to increase the number of working adults in our region who started but never completed some form of post-secondary education – education that extends beyond high school.

You might be surprised to learn that in Southeast Indiana, only 25% of our workforce has an associate’s, bachelors or professional degree, compared to 38% nationally. Yet one in four of our community’s adult workers has earned some college credits! That’s over 3,100 people in Washington County!  For whatever reason, they started but never completed their post-secondary education. This represents a tremendous amount of untapped potential in our community.

The community foundations that created Education Matters have elected to concentrate on a small sliver of the overall issue, those one in four of our adult workers who have some post-secondary credits but did not complete their degrees or certifications. This population of people who started but didn’t finish their education is where the Washington County Community Foundation sees opportunity to implement immediate changes that can drive our educational attainment numbers up, ultimately having real impact on our community.

The following criteria have been established for this first round of scholarships:  

  1. Annual awards will not exceed $3,000 the first twelve months and $5,000 per person in any subsequent twelve month period.
  2. Scholarship applicants must be a minimum of 28 years old as of the date of application.
  3. Only individuals who can demonstrate continuing legal residence in Washington County for at least the past five years are eligible. Documentation such as tax forms, housing receipts, or utility bills will be used to verify residency and/or household income.
  4. Scholarship awards may be used for tuition, course-related fees, or books only. Checks will only be written to an educational institution or certified training provider.
  5. The application deadline is 3:30 on April 15, 2017. No exceptions.  Applications can be found on the Foundation website at or by requesting an application from our office. 
  6. Adult scholarship awards may not be used to pay for college debt.
  7. Subsequent awards will only be considered for students maintaining at least a 2.5 GPA.

Call the Washington County Community Foundation office at 883-7334 or email program.officer@wccf.biz to request an application or for more information.

The mission of the Washington County Community Foundation is to engage people, build resources and strengthen our community. 

How to Find Affordable High-Speed Home Internet Services

 

Do you know of any resources that can help me find affordable high-speed home Internet services? I'm retired and live primarily on my Social Security and would like to find something cheaper than the $40 per month that I currently pay.

There are two great resources you can turn to, to help you locate low-cost or discounted Internet services, but's what's available to you will depend on where you live and/or your income level. Here's where to begin.

Low-Cost Internet


Your first step to locate cheaper high-speed Internet is EveryoneOn, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to making affordable Internet services available to all Americans.

Through partnerships with Internet providers like Comcast, Cox, AT&T, T-Mobile, Mediacom and others, EveryoneOn can help you search for services in your area that provide high-speed (4G LTE) Internet at a very low cost. Most participating companies charge around $10 per month with no contract and no equipment fee. However, for non-income qualifiers, there may be a one-time setup/equipment fee of $62. Data plans will vary too.

To start your search, go to EveryoneOn.org, type in your ZIP code and click on the "Find Offers" button, or you can call 877-947-4321. You'll then need to answer a few questions regarding you household financial situation so the Internet services you're eligible for can be located.

Some providers offer their services only to people with limited financial resources, however there are others that offer low-cost deals to everyone regardless of income. What's available to you will depend on where you live.

Also note that in addition to the low-cost Internet services, EveryoneOn also provides referrals to affordable computers and free computer classes. Most of the companies they work with offer refurbished tablets usually for under $100 and computers for under $160 that are available to everyone. And, they provide referrals to free computer classes, which are typically offered in public libraries across the U.S.

Discounted Internet


If you don't have any luck finding a low-cost service through EveryoneOn, and your income is low enough, another option is the Lifeline Assistance Program. This is a federal program that provides a $9.25 monthly subsidy to help pay for broadband Internet service or for a home or wireless phone. Only one benefit is available per household; either phone service (home or wireless) or Internet (home or mobile), but not both.

To qualify, you'll need to show that your annual household income is at or below 135% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines - which is $16,281 for one person or $21,924 for two. Or, that you're receiving certain types of government benefits such as Medicaid, food stamps, SSI, public housing assistance, veterans pension or survivors pension benefit or live on federally recognized tribal lands.

To apply, you'll need to contact an Internet provider in your area that participates in the Lifeline program and ask for an application form. To locate providers in your area, visit LifelineSupport.org or call 888-641-8722. Once the provider verifies your eligibility, they will begin service. (NOTE: The Internet companies that partner with EveryoneOn do not currently accept the lifeline subsidy.)

Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.

 

Published March 3, 2017

Choosing the Best Assisted Living Facility

 

What tips can you offer for choosing a quality assisted living facility for my mom? Her health and mental abilities have declined to the point that she can't live alone anymore but isn't ready for a nursing home either.

If your mom needs some assistance with daily living activities like bathing or getting dressed, managing her medications, preparing meals, housekeeping, laundry or just getting around, an assisted living facility is definitely a good option to consider.

Assisted living facilities are residential communities that offer different levels of health or personal care services for seniors who want or need help with daily living.

Around 40,000 assisted living facilities (also called board and care, supportive-care or residential-care facilities) are in the U.S. today, some of which are part of a retirement community or nursing home. Most facilities have between 25 and 125 suites, varying in size from a single room to a full apartment. Some even offer special memory care units for residents with dementia. Here are some steps you can take to choose a good facility.

Make a list: Several sources can help you find referrals to assisted living facilities in your area including your Area Agency on Aging (call 800-677-1116 to get your local number), family doctors, local senior centers or online search services like Caring.com.

Call your ombudsman: This is a government official who investigates long-term care facility complaints and advocates for residents and their families. This person can help you find the latest health inspection reports on specific assisted living facilities and can tell you which ones have had complaints or other problems. To find your local ombudsman, visit LTCombudsman.org.

Call the facilities: Once you've narrowed your search, call the facilities you're interested in to find out if they have any vacancies, what they charge and if they provide the types of services your mother needs.

Tour your top choices: During your visit, notice the cleanliness and smell of the facility. Is it homey and inviting? Does the staff seem responsive and kind to its residents? Also be sure to taste the food and talk to the residents and their family members, if available. It's also a good idea to visit several times at different times of the day and different days of the week to get a broader perspective.

On your visit, get a copy of the admissions contract and the residence rules that outline the facilities fees, services and residents' rights, and explains when a resident might be asked to leave because their condition has worsened and they require more care than the facility can provide.

Also find out about staff screening and training procedures and what percentage of their staff leaves each year. Less than 30% annually is considered good. More than 50% is a red flag. To help you rate your visit, Caring.com offers a checklist of questions that you can download and print at Caring.com/static/checklist-AL-tour.pdf.

Paying for care: Monthly costs for assisted living range anywhere from $2,500 to $5,000 or more, depending on where you live, the facility you choose and the services provided. Since Medicare does not cover assisted living, most residents pay out-of-pocket while others have long-term care insurance policies.

If your mom is lower-income and can't afford this, many states provide Medicaid waver programs that help pay for assisted living. If your mom is a veteran, spouse or surviving spouse of a veteran, she may be able to get funds through the VA's Aid and Attendance benefit. To find out about these programs, ask the assisted living facility director or contact her local Medicaid office (see Medicaid.gov) or regional VA office (800-827-1000).

Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.

 

Published February 24, 2017

How Medicare Covers Preventive Health Services

How Medicare Covers Preventive Health Services

Does Medicare cover 100% of all preventive health care screenings? I'm due to get a colonoscopy and a few other tests, but I want to find out if I'll have to pay anything before I proceed.
Medicare currently covers a wide array of free preventive and screening services to help you stay healthy, but not all services are completely covered.
You also need to be aware that the repeal of the Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare) - which helps financially support Medicare - may very well cause these free preventive services to be eliminated in the future. But in the meantime, here's how it works.

Free Preventive Services

Currently, most of Medicare's preventive services are available to all Part B beneficiaries for free, with no copays or deductibles, as long as you meet basic eligibility standards. Mammograms; colonoscopies; shots against flu, pneumonia and hepatitis B; screenings for diabetes, depression, and heart conditions; and counseling to combat obesity, alcohol abuse and smoking are just some of Medicare's lengthy list of covered services. But to get these services for free, you need to go to a doctor who accepts Medicare "on assignment," which means he or she has agreed to accept the Medicare approved rate as full payment.
Also, the tests are free only if they're used at specified intervals. For example, prostate cancer PSA tests, once every 12 months for men over 50; or colonoscopy, once every 10 years or every two years if you're at high risk.
Medicare also offers a free "Welcome to Medicare" exam with your doctor in your first year, along with annual wellness visits thereafter. But don't confuse these with full physical examinations. These are prevention-focused visits that provide only an overview of your health and medical risk factors and serve as a baseline for future care.
For a complete list of services along with their eligibility requirements, visit Medicare.gov and click on the "What Medicare Covers" tab at the top of the page, followed by "Preventive & screening services."

Hidden Costs

You also need to know that while the previously listed Medicare services are completely free, you can be charged for certain diagnostic services or additional tests or procedures related to the preventive service. For example, if your doctor finds and removes a polyp during your preventive care colonoscopy screening, the removal of the polyp is considered diagnostic and you will likely be charged for it. Or, if during your annual wellness visit, your doctor needs to investigate or to treat a new or existing problem, you will probably be charged here too.
You may also have to pay a facility fee depending on where you receive the service. Certain hospitals, for example, will often charge separate facilities fees when you are receiving a preventive service. In addition, you can be charged for a doctor's visit if you meet with a physician before or after the service.
To eliminate billing surprises, talk to your doctor before any preventive service procedure to find out if you may be subject to a charge and what it would be.

Cost Sharing Services

Medicare also offers several other preventive services that require some out-of-pocket cost sharing. With these tests, you'll have to pay 20% of the cost of the service after you've met your $183 Part B yearly deductible. The services that fall under this category include glaucoma screenings, diabetes self-management trainings, barium enemas to detect colon cancer and digital rectal exams to detect prostate cancer.

Medicare Advantage Members

If you have a Medicare Advantage plan, your plans are also required to cover the same free preventive services as original Medicare as long as you see in-network providers. If you see providers that are not in your plan's network, charges will typically apply.
Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.
Published February 17, 2017

Do You Need To File a Tax Return in 2017?

 

What are the IRS income tax filing requirements for retirees this tax season? My income dropped way down when I retired last year in 2016, so I'm wondering if I need to even file a tax return this year.
There are several factors that affect whether or not you need to file a federal income tax return this year including how much you earned last year (in 2016) and the source of that income, as well as your age and filing status.
Here's a rundown of the IRS tax filing requirement thresholds this tax season. For most people, this is pretty straightforward. If your 2016 gross income was below the threshold for your filing status and age, you probably won't have to file. Your gross income includes all taxable income, not counting your Social Security benefits (unless you are married and filing separately). If your 2016 gross income is over the threshold for your filing status and age, then you will have to file a return. The thresholds are as follows:
  • Single: $10,350 ($11,900 if you're 65 or older by Jan. 1, 2017).
  • Married filing jointly: $20,700 ($21,950 if you or your spouse is 65 or older or $23,200 if you're both over 65).
  • Married filing separately: $4,050 at any age.
  • Head of household: $13,350 ($14,900 if age 65 or older).
  • Qualifying widow with dependent child: $16,650 ($17,900 if age 65 or older).
To get a detailed breakdown on federal filing requirements, along with information on taxable and nontaxable income, call the IRS at 800-829-3676 and ask them to mail you a free copy of the "Tax Guide for Seniors" (publication 554), or see IRS.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p554.pdf.

Special Circumstances

There are, however, some other financial situations that will require you to file a tax return, even if your gross income falls below the IRS filing requirement. For example, if you had earnings from self-employment in 2016 of $400 or more, or if you owe any special taxes to the IRS (such as the alternative minimum tax or IRA tax penalties), you'll probably need to file.
To figure this out, the IRS offers an interactive tool on their website that asks a series of questions to help you determine if you're required to file, or if you should file because you're due a refund. It takes about 15 minutes to complete.
You can access this tool at IRS.gov/filing. You will need to click on the "Do you need to file a return?" button under the Get Ready tab. Or, you can get assistance over the phone by calling the IRS helpline at 800-829-1040. You can also get face-to-face help at a Taxpayer Assistance Center. See IRS.gov/localcontacts or call 800-829-1040 to locate a center near you.

Check Your State

Even if you're not required to file a federal tax return this year, don't assume that you're also excused from filing state income taxes. The rules for your state might be very different. Check with your state tax agency before concluding that you're entirely in the clear. For links to state tax agencies see Taxadmin.org/state-tax-agencies.

Tax Preparation Help

If you find that you do need to file a tax return this year, you can get help through the Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) program. Sponsored by the IRS, TEC provides free tax preparation and counseling to middle and low-income taxpayers who are age 60 and older. Call 800-906-9887 or visit IRS.treasury.gov/freetaxprep to locate a service near you.
Also check with AARP, a participant in the TCE program that provides free tax preparation at more than 5,000 sites nationwide. To locate an AARP Tax-Aide site call 888-227-7669 or visit AARP.org/findtaxhelp. You don't have to be an AARP member to use this service.
Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.

How to Help Older Drivers Give Up the Car Keys

 

What tips can you recommend that can help me deal with my mom's bad driving? At age 83, her driving abilities have declined, but I know she's bound and determined to keep driving as long as she's alive.
There's no doubt that giving up driving can be a tough step for many elderly people, as well as a difficult conversation for concerned family members. While there's no one way to handle this sometimes touchy topic, there are a number of tips and resources that can help you evaluate and adjust your mom's driving, and ease her out from behind the wheel when she can no longer drive safely.

Assess Her Driving

To get a clear picture of your mom's driving abilities, your first step—if you haven't already done so—is to take a ride with her and watch for problem areas. For example: Does she drive at inappropriate speeds, tailgate or drift between lanes? Does she have difficulty seeing, backing up or changing lanes? Does she react slowly, get confused easily or make poor driving decisions? Also, has your mom had any fender benders or tickets lately, or have you noticed any dents or scrapes on her vehicle? These, too, are red flags. For more assessment tips see SeniorDriverChecklist.info.
If you need help with this, consider hiring a driver rehabilitation specialist who's trained to evaluate older drivers. This typically runs between $100 and $200. Visit AOTA.org/older-driver or ADED.net to locate a specialist in your area.

Transitioning and Talking

After your assessment, if you think it's still safe for your mom to drive, see if she would be willing to take a driving course tailored for seniors.
These courses will show her how aging affects driving skills, and offers tips and adjustments to help ensure her safety. Taking a class may also earn your mom a discount on her auto insurance. To locate a class, contact your local AAA (AAA.com) or AARP (AARP.org/drive, 888-227-7669). Most courses cost around $20 to $30 and can be taken online or in a classroom.
If, however, your assessment shows that your mom really does need to stop driving, you need to have a talk with her, but don't overdo it. If you begin with a dramatic outburst like "Mom, you're going to kill someone!" you're likely to trigger resistance. Start by simply expressing your concern for her safety.
For more tips on how to talk to your mom about this, the Hartford Financial Services Group and MIT AgeLab offer a variety of resources at TheHartford.com/lifetime - click on "Publications" on the menu bar, then on the "We Need To Talk" guidebook.

Refuses To Quit

If your mom refuses to quit, you have several options. One possible solution is to suggest a visit to her doctor who can give her a medical evaluation, and if warranted, prescribe that she stops driving.
If she still refuses, contact your local Department of Motor Vehicles to see if they can help. Or, have an attorney discuss the potential financial and legal consequences of a crash or injury with your mom. If all else fails, you may have to take away her keys and set her up with alternate transportation.

Alternative Transportation

Once your mom stops driving she's going to need other ways to get around, so help her create a list of names and phone numbers of family, friends and local transportation services that she can call on.
To find out what transportation services are available in her area, contact the Rides in Sight (RidesInSight.org, 855-607-4337) and the Eldercare Locator (800-677-1116), which will direct you to her area agency on aging for assistance.
Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.
Published February 3, 2017
 
 
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How to Improve a Kitchen's Accessibility

 

A while back you wrote a column on how to make a bathroom safer and easier to use. What about the kitchen? At 80, my mother still loves to cook, but has arthritis and some mobility challenges that make it difficult for her. What kitchen accessibility tips can you recommend?
The standing, bending, reaching, gripping and lifting that often comes with cooking makes the kitchen one of the most challenging rooms in the house for individuals with accessibility issues to use. Here's what you can do.

Small Modifications

There are simple solutions and inexpensive add-ons that can make a big difference in making your mom's kitchen safer and easier to maneuver. Consider these tips:
  • Cabinets: Start by reorganizing your mom's kitchen cabinets so that the items she frequently uses are within comfortable reach. You can also make her cabinets and pantry more accessible by installing pull-out shelves or lazy susans, or for the hard-to-reach upper shelves, a pull-down shelving system. D-shaped pull-handles for the cabinets and drawers are also recommended because they're more comfortable for arthritic hands to grasp than knobs.
  • Lights: Aging eyes need more light, so install the highest wattage bulbs allowed in your mom's fixtures. To brighten up her kitchen countertops, add task lighting under her cabinets.
  • Faucet: If she has twist handles on the faucet, replace them with easy-to-turn lever handles, an ADA compliant faucet with a single lever handle or the new Delta touch technology faucet. For safety purposes, set your mom's hot water tank at 120 degrees to prevent water burns.
  • Stove: If her vision is poor, clearly mark the controls on her stove or replace her dial controls with larger, easier to read dials. And if memory is an issue, an automatic stove shut-off device (see cookstop.com, stoveguardintl.com and pioneeringtech.com) is a smart solution.
  • Microwave: If your mom's microwave is mounted above her stove, consider moving it to a countertop. It makes it safer and easier to reach.
  • Other areas: If she has kitchen throw rugs, reduce the possibility of tripping by securing them to the floor with double-sided rug tape or replacing them with non-skid floor mats. If standing for long periods causes her problems, get a kitchen stool so she can sit down while she works. To help her arthritic hands, invest in some OXO Good Grip (oxo.com) or other ergonomic kitchen utensils.

User-Friendly Appliances

If you're looking to buy your mom some new appliances, manufacturers like General Electric, Whirlpool, Bosch, Siemens and others make a variety of products designed with accessibility in mind. Here's what to look for:
  • Refrigerator/freezer: Side-by-side doors work well because the frequently used items (refrigerated and frozen) can be placed at mid-shelf range for easy access. Pull-out adjustable height shelves and water/ice dispenser on the outside of the door are also very convenient.
  • Dishwasher: Drawer-designed dishwashers that slide in and out are very handy. Have it installed on a raised platform (6 to 10 inches) to eliminate bending over.
  • Stove or cooktop: Look for one with the controls at the front so your mom won't have to reach over hot burners to turn it off; and make sure the controls are easy to read and use. Flat surface burners or continuous grates on gas stoves are also great for sliding heavy pots and pans from one burner to the next. Also ask about automatic shut off burners.
  • Oven: Self-cleaning ovens are a plus—consider a side-swing door model. They're easier to get into because you don't have to lean over a hot swing-down door. Also consider a wall-mounted oven, installed at your mom's preferred height to eliminate bending.
  • Washer and dryer: Front-load washers and dryers with pedestals that raise the height 10 to 15 inches are back-savers and easy to access.
Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.
Published January 27, 2017

How to Guard Against Medicare Fraud

 

What are the steps people need to take if they suspect Medicare fraud?
Medicare fraud costs taxpayers more than $60 billion every year, making it one of the most profitable crimes in America. Here's what you should know, along with some tips for preventing, detecting and reporting it if it happens to you.

What is Medicare fraud?

In a nutshell, Medicare fraud happens when Medicare is purposely billed for services or supplies that were never provided or received. Here are a few examples of some different types of Medicare fraud:
  • A healthcare provider bills Medicare for services you never received.
  • A supplier bills Medicare for equipment you never received.
  • Someone uses your Medicare card to get medical care, supplies or equipment.
  • A company offers a Medicare drug plan that has not been approved by Medicare.
  • A company uses false information to mislead you into joining a Medicare plan.

What You Can Do

The best way for you to spot Medicare fraud is to review your quarterly Medicare Summary Notices (MSN) or your Explanation of Benefits (EOB). Be on the lookout for things like charges for medical services, medications or equipment you didn't get, dates of services and charges that look unfamiliar or if you were billed for the same thing twice. You can also check your Medicare claims early online at MyMedicare.gov (you'll need to create an account first) or by calling Medicare at 800-633-4227.
If you do spot any unusual or questionable charges, your first step is to contact your doctor or health care provider. The charge may just be a simple billing error. If, however, you can't resolve the problem with the provider, your next step is to report the questionable charges to Medicare at 800-633-4227 or to the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General Fraud hotline at 800-447-8477.
When you call, have the MSN or EOB with the questionable charges handy because you'll need to provide them with the following information: your Medicare card number; the physician, supplier, and/or facility name where the service was supposedly provided; the date the service was rendered; the payment amount approved and paid by Medicare; as well as the reason you think Medicare shouldn't have paid. As an incentive, if the suspicious activity you report turns out to be fraud, you may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.
If you need help identifying or reporting Medicare fraud or resolving your Medicare billing errors, contact your state Senior Medicare Patrol program, which provides free assistance. Go to smpresource.org or call 877-808-2468 for contact information.

Protect Yourself

To help you protect yourself from becoming a victim of Medicare fraud, you need to guard your Medicare card like you would your credit cards, and don't ever give your Medicare or Social Security number to strangers. Also, don't ever give out your personal information to someone who calls or comes to your home uninvited to get you to join a Medicare plan. Medicare will never call or visit your home to sell you anything.
It's also a smart idea to keep records of your doctor visits, tests, and procedures so you can compare them with any suspicious charges on your MSN or EOB.
For more tips and information on how to protect yourself from Medicare fraud, visit StopMedicareFraud.gov.
Savvy Living is written by Jim Miller, a regular contributor to the NBC Today Show and author of "The Savvy Living” book. Any links in this article are offered as a service and there is no endorsement of any product. These articles are offered as a helpful and informative service to our friends and may not always reflect this organization’s official position on some topics. Jim invites you to send your senior questions to: Savvy Living, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070.
Published January 20, 2017

Free Basketball Tickets To SCS Students on January 28th

Due to the generosity of Stanley Colglazier and Sara Colglazier to the Washington County Community Foundation, students of Salem Community Schools will receive free tickets to the January 28, 2017 JV and Varsity basketball games versus Eastern High School. Students may enter through any door accessible to the gymnasium and will need to sign-in for entrance to the game.   Salem students are strongly encouraged to wear Salem or black and gold attire.  The tickets are available for students attending Salem Community Schools in grades K-12; however, students in elementary school are required to be accompanied by an adult.  This is a great way to spend quality time together as a family while showing school spirit. This is also a great idea for a Boy Scout, Girl Scout, 4-H club, church youth group, or other group field trip. Be sure to take advantage of these free tickets as the Lions face off against county rivals, the Musketeers.  For questions regarding tickets, please call the Washington County Community Foundation at 883-7334 or SHS athletic director, Hank Weedin at 883-3904. 

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