In today's environment, working together - whether that's across the aisle, across the country, or across generations - is the only way to keep our communities safe. That spirit and attitude is what America is all about, in the greatest country in the world, and that's thanks, in no small part, to the many accomplishments of our seniors..Medicaid currently covers about 60 percent of people in nursing homes. But to qualify, seniors in long-term care are required to "spend down" their life savings to the last ,000 and ,000 before Medicaid covers the bill. That won't apply to people younger than 65 under the new rules. Financial eligibility is based on modified adjusted gross income. Medicaid will no longer count how much applicants have in assets like savings and investments for this group of applicants as long as they aren't in long-term care. While that's likely to help more low-income seniors under 65 qualify for Medicaid, TSCL is concerned that it also opens the program to greater potential for gaming the system and fraud..The more you learn about the COLA, however, the more the anemic annual boosts of our past decade raise questions. The very first COLA ever paid was 77%. No, you read that right, this is not a typo. It became payable in 1950, one year before I was born, and a full ten years after Ida May Fuller received the nation's very first Social Security benefit check for .54 - the equivalent of 0.90 today..The U.S. Supreme Court decision on immigration has significant consequences for Social Security and Medicare, says a recent report by The Senior Citizens League. "President Obama's executive actions on immigration would have provided long - term access to Social Security and Medicare benefits for people who worked in this country illegally, even though the newly - issued green cards are only temporary," says TSCL Chairman Ed Cates.Key Bills Gain Support.a more generous cost-of-living adjustment by calculating the annual boost using the Consumer Price Index for the Elderly,.The SSA and the AARP say, however, the Notch affects only those born during the five-year period of 1917 through 192Those born during that period were covered by a special transitional benefit formula, the purpose of which was to provide a 5-year phase-in for the new 1977 benefit formula..We encourage you to attend a town hall, and invite others you know. The future of our retirement and our healthcare benefits rests in our hands..Because it means new legislation to reduce the costs of prescription drugs is not likely to be passed this year and will have to await the start of the next Congress in January of 202In addition, as we've explained in the last couple of updates, the executive announcements the President issued regarding prescription drugs are not clear about what drugs they cover and even if things get clarified it is highly unlikely seniors will see a reduction in drug prices this year. And, of course, the major drug companies are strongly opposed to orders and are fighting to change them.

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The House of Representatives returned to work this week after the traditional August recess. The Senate, however, does not come back until next week..COLAs are calculated using the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners. This simply does not make sense for seniors. This method of calculation considers spending habits of younger workers who are more likely to spend their dollars on electronic devices and consumer goods. Seniors are more likely to spend money on medical services and housing expenses. The prices of these items rise significantly higher than what the CPI-W calculates..Sell and buy "senior" housing. If your home is too big, too expensive, and your needs are changing, it may be wise to start shopping for a more efficient newer home. Use the balance of the remaining sales proceeds for investments or an annuity to provide retirement income. When looking at new homes, consider future transportation needs and ease of access to public transportation to stores, businesses, healthcare facilities, and other favorite places. Spend time learning about the new community and do your homework on property values. Have homes in the area recently been reassessed for local taxes, or will you pay taxes based on "pre- crash" real estate values? How far is the new home from your kids and family? If you develop health issues, what type of medical care is available, including home care workers? … Continued

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Last month the Trump administration reported that a future COVID-19 vaccine would be free for nearly all Americans, except for seniors with traditional Medicare coverage..Heating and cooling: According to TSCL's Annual Survey of senior costs, residential fuel oil has been the fastest rising expense for more than a decade. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, a 250-gallon delivery of home heating oil this season may cost more than With the average monthly Social Security payment around ,100, that's a cost few seniors can afford and still have something left over for groceries. Take time to survey suppliers in your area and compare costs. Do ask for a senior citizen discount and learn the supplier's payment options. Financing your heating fuel through the supplier may give you smaller, more manageable payments, but you will pay financing fees and interest. With interest so low on savings, it sometimes makes sense to pay in full when you can to save financing charges..What do you know about the fastest rising expenses in retirement? Take this quiz at. … Continued

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