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Farmers' Market Coupons available in June

June is the month seniors can start using Senior Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program coupons. Each recipient gets six coupons, worth $5 each, which can be used through Oct. 31. Coupons are issued to low-income seniors and can be exchanged for fresh...

 
 By Nila Morgan    Health    June 1, 2019

Balance billing and what it means for you

Balance billing is when a provider bills you for the difference between the amount he charges for a product or service and the insurance company’s negotiated amount. For example, if the...

 

Fiber, health and truth from the 1800s

My Grandma Tillie, born in 1893, was on to something. Her son, my dad, made fun of his mom. He laughed at her admonitions to eat fiber-filled whole grains, saying, "Tillie was always telling us to...

 

Alaska Health Fair provides important services year-round

If you’ve missed attending a local community or worksite health fair or are seeking an additional blood test, we want you to be aware that our staff provides high quality office draws (on an appointment basis) on select Tuesdays each month. These...

 
 By Dani Kebschull    Health    June 1, 2019

Day centers are more than places for naps

Have you heard of adult day services and if you have, what does it bring to mind? Hopefully not a group of seniors sitting in recliners, napping. Adult day services (sometimes also referred to as “day care”) provide quality care and companionship...

 

Free training, support for family caregivers

The Kenai Peninsula Family Caregiver Support Program will hold the following peer support meetings in June. This month’s topic is “When is it time for a long term care facility?” Understandably, many family members want to care for their loved...

 
 By John Schieszer    Health    June 1, 2019

Financial toxicity from medical expenses is getting worse

A new study is suggesting that more than half of Americans report problems with affordability, stress or delaying care because of medical costs. The study, which was published in the Journal of...

 

Mental health resources for Alaska veterans

A lot is asked of our men and women in the military, whether active duty or those who have achieved veteran status. Per their service, they are required to constantly relocate, every three to four years depending on military branch. They must deploy...

 
 By Jim Miller    Health    May 1, 2019

The long-term care benefit many veterans miss out on

Dear Savvy Senior: I have heard that the VA has a benefit that can help veterans and spouses with long-term care costs. We recently had to move my 86-year-old father – who served in the army nearly 60 years ago – into an assisted living...

 
 By Nila Morgan    Health    May 1, 2019

Surprise! You may pay an IRMAA

When we talk about the costs of Medicare, the discussion can include premiums, deductibles, co-insurances and copays. Another cost to Medicare beneficiaries that may come as a surprise is the Income...

 

Spring health fair season winds down in May

Alaska Health Fairs will be held at the following locations and times during May. For more information, call 907-278-0234 (Anchorage) or 907-374-6853 (Fairbanks); or just visit www.alaskahealthfair.org for the remaining Spring 2019 community...

 
 By John Schieszer    Health    May 1, 2019

Potential risks and rewards of new treatments for depression, Parkinson's, colorectal cancer

Concern over a potential misuse of new depression medication The U.S. Food and Drug Administration in March approved Spravato (esketamine) nasal spray, in conjunction with an oral antidepressant, for...

 

Free training and support for family caregivers

The Kenai Peninsula Family Caregiver Support Program will hold the following peer support meetings in May. This month’s topic is Caregiving and Depression. During Mental Health Month, discussion will focus on how caregiving puts people at risk for...

 
 By Suzy Cohen    Health    April 1, 2019

Diet drinks may increase stroke and disability

We are so attached to our food and drink that it pains me when I have to take something away from you. But this is an old story for me. I have never ever recommended artificially sweetened sodas or “diet” anything. To me, that whole industry is a...

 
 By Jim Miller    Health    April 1, 2019

Safe ways to get rid of expired, unused medicine

Dear Savvy Senior: What’s the best, environmentally safe way to dispose of old and unused medications? My mother has a medicine cabinet chocked-full of pills, some of which haven’t been touched in 25 years, and I’d like to clean it out for...

 

April events at Hospice of Anchorage

Save the date for Hospice of Anchorage’s 17th Annual Heroes of Healthcare Awards Black Tie Event and Auction at the Anchorage Marriott Hotel on Saturday, April 20. Heroes of Healthcare is a way to recognize significant contributions and service to...

 

Spring health fairs coming to locations near you

Alaska Health Fair events offer free health screenings, health and safety education, plus 11 affordable blood tests and so much more. These tests and screenings can help you learn about your overall health and detect potential problems early, when...

 
 By John Schieszer    Health    April 1, 2019

Eating more mushrooms may protect the brain

Mushrooms may have hidden brain benefit Researchers are reporting that older adults who consume more than two standard portions of mushrooms weekly may have 50 percent reduced odds of having mild...

 

Rosacea's impact on well-being can be profound

Although a cure for rosacea has yet to be discovered, advances in medical therapy have made it increasingly possible for those who suffer from this chronic disorder to achieve clear skin. At the same time, recent surveys have shown just how...

 

Free training, support for family caregivers

The Kenai Peninsula Family Caregiver Support Program will hold the following peer support meetings in April. This month’s topic is National Distracted Driving Awareness Month and meetings will include discussion centered around age related issues...

 
 By Jim Miller    Health    March 1, 2019

Does Medicare cover vision services?

Dear Savvy Senior: I will be enrolling in Medicare in a few months, and would like to know how Medicare covers vision services? I currently have vision insurance through my employer but will lose it...

 

Spring health fairs are in full swing

Alaska Health Fair events offer free health screenings, health and safety education, plus 11 affordable blood tests and so much more. These tests and screenings can help you learn about your overall health and detect potential problems early, when...

 

Fairbanks workshop on dementia care

The Alaska Training Cooperative and Alzheimer’s Resource of Alaska will present “Dementia Care Workshop,” April 17 at the Alzheimer’s Resource of Alaska office in Fairbanks, 1 to 5:30 p.m. The purpose of the workshop is to build a foundation...

 

Bad blood pressure testing makes my blood boil

We sat waiting in yet another medical exam room, my mother perched on the exam table, legs dangling. A nurse came in wheeling a device. She began circling my mom’s forearm with the blood pressure cuff. My blood pressure rose: “Her feet have to...

 
 By John Schieszer    Health    March 1, 2019

Improving knee implants and brain function

Self-powered knee implants Researchers at State University of New York are now developing self-powered knee implants that could reduce the number of knee replacement surgeries. They are working on...

 

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