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SC&C Blog

Dementia Red Flags?


This Washington Post piece addresses some of the initial red flags that can be indicators of early dementia signs.  Dementia Red Flags

Useful new Medicare Phone App, What's Covered


Medicare has released a new phone app called "What's Covered" to make it easier for Medicare beneficiaries or caregivers to determine whether a service or medical item will be covered.   The phone app is free and you can find additional information about downloading the app at this link What's Covered App.

A phone game that can detect Alzheimer's?


Have you heard about the phone game, Sea Hero Quest? Research from the University of East Anglia claims that this "specially designed mobile phone game can detect people at risk of Alzheimer's."  For more about this game, please click here Sea Hero Quest and Alzheimer's?

Senior Scams and Dementia?


Does this sound familiar to you? 

"Does an older friend or relative have a hard time hanging up on telemarketers? Or get excited about a "You've won a prize" voicemail? New research suggests seniors who aren't on guard against scams also might be at risk for eventually developing Alzheimer's disease. "  See more from this New York Times piece here:  Senior Scams and Dementia?

Do I Need A Miller Trust?


One question that we are frequently asked is, "What is a Miller Trust and do I need one?"  This article was written by Attorney Lindsay Blessinger Charles and it ran in the Evansville Courier and Press in 2018.  Check out the article to learn more about Miller Trusts.

In 2014, the State of Indiana adopted the Social Security Administration income guidelines with respect to income levels and qualification for Medicaid services for nursing home and waiver recipients. 

For 2019, individuals who reside in nursing homes and receive $2,313.00 or more per month in gross income must establish a Miller Trust in order to be eligible for Medicaid.   

A Miller Trust can be established by the nursing home resident/waiver...

Americans Entering Retirement with No Savings


A recently authored article from Bloomberg, provided below, shows that many Americans are entering retirement with little to no savings set aside.  What happens when these individuals need long term care for their declining health?  An elder law attorney can help answer these questions and help preserve assets for those who have saved and need nursing home care.

Americans Entering Retirement with No Savings

Loss of Community Spousal Protections Looming?


Justice on Aging released the following update today:

"There are numerous federal Medicaid programs and policies that improve access to home and community based services (HCBS) and encourage states to fund and expand HCBS and decrease Medicaid’s bias towards institutional care.

Medicaid’s “spousal impoverishment protections” make it possible for an individual who needs a nursing home level of care to qualify for Medicaid and receive long-term services and supports, while allowing their married spouse to retain a modest amount of income and resources to pay for rent, food, and medication. Congress extended this protection to eligibility for HCBS in all states beginning in 2014, providing married couples the same financial...

Nursing Home Care Survey


Care.com interviewed 978 individuals with a loved one in the nursing home.  The study asked participants about their loved one's care needs, frequency of visits to the nursing home, who made the decision to enter the nursing home, length of stay, satisfaction of care needs, and various additional topics.

Here is a link to the interesting survey results.  Nursing Homes in America Survey  

New Social Security Scams


Scammers never stop trying to find ways to defraud the vulnerable.  During 2018, the FTC reported that they heard from approximately 35,000 Americans who were contacted by potential scammers and over $10 million dollars were lost to the scams during 2018.  Further, the FTC released an actual audio recording of a message left by a scammer.  Check out the below provided link to hear this message. 

What does a Social Security Scam sound like? Click here to find out...

Guardianship - A Ward's Perspective


The following is an article that was published in the New York Times and it shares the guardianship perspective of a woman fighting to have her rights restored after a guardian was appointed on her behalf. It is an interesting and worthy read.

Guardianship - A Ward's Perspective  

Guns and Dementia


What options are available? 

"Some patients refuse to answer. Many doctors don’t ask. Family members worry about offending a suffering loved one. As the number of Americans with dementia rises, health professionals are grappling with when and how to pose the question: “Do you have guns at home?”

Guns and Dementia

VA Aid and Attendance Changes


If you haven't heard, the VA finally implemented the long awaited changes to the Aid and Attendance benefits available to veterans who served during active wartime, were honorably discharged, and who require assistance with two activities of daily living, and/or their surviving spouse.  As a brief overview, beginning October 18, 2018, there is now a three year look back period for all transfers and gifts and asset limits will now be imposed.  Take a look at the article attached for a good summary of the changes.  

VA Aid and Attendance Changes

Medicare Open Enrollment


Medicare Open Enrollment will be here soon.  Are you ready?

Medicare Open Enrollment

Tips for aging in place


Many people would like to remain in their home as long as possible.  However, "the problem is that most of the nation’s housing is not designed to accommodate physical and cognitive challenges that come with aging."  Please see below for tips on aging in place.   

Tips for aging in place

Micro-chipping elders? Safety versus privacy


Medical technology is becoming implantable.  Is it a good idea to use this technology on those with cognitive impairments, such as Alzheimer's or dementia, for safety?   Or is privacy and the right to be left alone being infringed? 

Micro-chipping elders?

Single elders - How will they pay for long term care?


Long term care is not cheap and many seniors have heard horror stories about losing everything they worked a lifetime to acquire.  "A recent survey found that 10% of seniors aging alone plan on using reverse mortgages to pay for long-term care costs."  If you are a caregiver, child, or spouse or an elder, please do yourself a favor and call an elder law attorney to help plan for these events.  Many stresses and pitfalls can likely be avoided with proper planning.

How are single elders paying for long term care?

Happy 83rd Birthday to Social Security


August 14, 2018, marked the 83rd anniversary of the Social Security Act.  Check out this press release from the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) regarding this milestone. 

83 years of Social Secuirty

Voting while in long term care?


Should long term care residents be allowed to vote in the 2018 mid-term elections and in future elections? 

Voting while in long term care?

Jimmo Improvement Standard Checklist


Does a nursing home resident have to improve in order for Medicare to pay?

No!  "Medicare coverage “does not turn on the presence or absence of a beneficiary’s potential for improvement, but rather on the beneficiary’s need for skilled care. Skilled care may be necessary to improve a patient’s condition, to maintain a patient’s current condition, or to prevent or slow further deterioration of the patient’s condition."   Please click below for the Improvement Standard checklist. 

Improvement Standard Checklist

"Granny Cams" in skilled nursing facilities?


Should "granny cams" be used at skilled nursing facilities?