Council on Aging Update

News and Notes, Thursday July 21st, 2022

This week I got the date correct…last week I was ahead of myself! Kudos to everyone who noticed.

On Saturday July 23rd at 1pm  If you’re able bodied and not afraid of slipping on wet stones, the South Williamstown Community Association and the Hoosic River Watershed Association invite you to take part in a cleanup walk along the Green River.   For the last few years we’ve been addressing the debris washing into the river from a former town landfill located behind the Hart farm on New Ashford Road (Route 7) however there is still work to be done.  Park at the Hart Garage and cross the road to walk down the driveway at the Thaisz house, 340 New Ashford Road.  You’ll need rubber boots or water shoes and gloves and don’t forget to spray yourself with insect repellent.  The Town will provide garbage bags and arrange for disposal. 

Due to four months of below normal rainfall, Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Bethany Card declared a Level 2 – Significant Drought in the Connecticut River Valley, Central, Northeast and Southeast Regions of the Commonwealth, and a Level 1 – Mild Drought in the Western and Islands Regions. The Cape Cod Region remains in Level 0 – Normal condition. This means that so far we are in a mild drought stage and while I have not YET heard that we are under conservation orders, be careful to water your greenery in the morning before 9 and after 5 at night with a hand held  source, hose, watering can when the water won’t evaporate…no sprinklers please!

The MS Foundation is sponsoring a Walk on Saturday morning, August 13, 2022 at Noel Field Track around the children’s Playground in North Adams, MA.  All money donated will be given to the National MS Society to further research to find a cure for Multiple Sclerosis. You can register for the walk by calling 413-664-2011 or via email at; officestaff@msresource.org The $25 entry fee includes a commemorative t-shirt at registration.

BEWARE of Insurance Agents who seem to be but ARE NOT affiliated with Medicare

The Swansea Council on Aging has received two inquiries regarding health insurance related to their Medicare and supplemental coverage:

The senior (who had excellent retiree coverage through a previous employer) called the phone number shown on a TV commercial and was convinced to join a Medicare Advantage plan offering additional coverage options and services that were “free”. The senior is now stuck with co-pays in excess of $250 which he cannot afford and cannot get his original insurance back. 

The senior received a mailing from “MedicareInsurance.com”. These are insurance salespeople/agents trying to SELL you a product for which they make a commission. See the postcard they received in the mail. 

Be careful when calling insurance agents, responding to postcard mailings or even having someone to your home to review coverage. If you have questions about your Medicare coverage and the options available to you, call your council on aging. 

I always thought that a long telephone number was counter productive for people in crisis wanting to talk with a suicide prevention counselor. Guess what? The U.S. has officially transitioned the 10-digit National Suicide Prevention Lifeline to 988 – an easy-to-remember three-digit number for 24/7 crisis care. The lifeline, which also links to the Veterans Crisis Line, follows a three-year joint effort to put crisis care more in reach for people in need.  All telephone service and text providers in the U.S. and the five major U.S. territories were required by the FCC to activate 988 by July 16th. The 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline is a network of more than 200 state and local call centers supported by HHS through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) If you know somebody who needs this information, please share!

Have a great weekend!

Brian

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