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Pequa Seniors Brush Up On Care

Senior citizens living at The Bristal in Massapequa, 400 Country Line Rd., were recently treated to a very important health care program presented by the Melville-based Genser Dubow Genser & Cona (GDGC), elder law and estate planning firm.   

The program, aimed to eliminate the confusion as to how Obamacare affects senior citizens, was attended by more than 50 seniors and some professionals. Melissa Negrin-Wiener, Esq., partner, GDGC, answered numerous questions but reassured the seniors that there will be little change for them with the Affordable Care Act — especially if they are on traditional Medicare.

Negrin-Wiener explained that any seniors on traditional Medicare will remain in good shape in terms of their coverage, as the new Obamacare parameters will not affect them adversely. However, Negrin-Wiener noted that anyone over the age of 65 can choose a Medicare Advantage plan as an alternative from a private carrier. With the Affordable Care Act, she warned that many of the Advantage plans are cutting benefits, as the plans are subsidized by the Federal government, and some doctors who currently participate will be dropped.

“Therefore, it’s wise to investigate and evaluate your existing plan,” she said.

Bill Freda, a retiree of GE and Wantagh resident, noted that this is the most complicated piece of legislation. Negrin-Wiener explained to Freda that receiving the right information makes all the difference.  

“Without the right information, many people may think they should drop their Medicare or their Medigap policies and look to buy a policy on the Exchange,” she said. “If you’re getting social security, you’re automatically covered under Medicare Part A. However, if you’re not collecting social security, or pay a premium for Medicare, you can get insurance through the Exchange.”

Another attendee Heinz Nestler, a health insurance agent in Patchogue, came to help his senior clients.  

“One of my concerns is what to tell clients who are not covered under a group insurance plan especially for those who don’t qualify for Medicare if they are under 65,” he said.  

GDGC told seniors that they will get new benefits, such as preventive care. For example, free screenings will be offered including colorectal screenings and mammograms along with free wellness doctor visits, smoking cessation and high cholesterol counseling.  

There will also be discounts on prescription drugs. Once an individual spends $2,970 on medication and are in the “donut hole,” they will pay approximately 50 percent less for brand name drugs. But the full amount is calculated as an out of pocket expense. The period in the gap will be shorter combined with cost savings.  

Seniors were warned to be careful about con artists now that much of the Affordable Care Act has gone into effect. Seniors were told that these scammers are trying to gain personal information, such as social security numbers and bank account information in order to steal identities. Officials said that before they become a victim, it is important to know that there is no new insurance cared.  

Also, imposters are now posing as “navigators” and calling or emailing unsuspecting individuals. Officials warned attendees that no one from the government will try to contact them. And lastly, the scammers are also creating false websites to get victims to sign up for insurance on them. However, the only legitimate website is www.healthcare.gov.

News

Two hundred business students from high schools across Nassau County, including Massapequa High School, competed for scholarships and cash awards—more than $33,000 in all—from various sponsors at Nassau County’s annual Comptroller’s Entrepreneurial Challenge.

The events on Sept. 11, 2001 had a profound effect on nearly all in the tri-state area, but for first responders, the effects were overwhelming. Long-time Massapequa resident Michael Smith, a member of the New York Fire Department, experienced those effects firsthand.

“While I’ve always been a person that could appreciate life, after 9/11 I became so distraught,” he said. “I realized I need to do something I want to do — something I love to do.”

A 30-year veteran of the fire department, Smith retired in 2002. He and his wife of 33 years, Teresa, began to look for a place they could enjoy life. This mindset brought them to the East End of Long Island, where they often went for day trips. They settled down in a home in Orient Point in 2004; in a home that needed quite a bit of work. And when it was time to landscape the property, a new idea took root — a vineyard.


Sports

Massapequa athletes recently received honors from their coaches at Kellenberg Memorial High School.

Each season, the coaches of all of the Kellenberg teams choose one member of their team who stands out as an athlete that has worked hard to improve themselves in their chosen sport.

The Farmingdale State women’s lacrosse team won the first game of their Spring Break trip to North Carolina with a victory over Greensboro College. In wet and muddy conditions, the Rams (8-1) held an 8-5 lead at the half and took the eventual 13-10 win.

In the first half and tied 2-2, the Pride (7-5) pulled ahead 4-2 with two unassisted goals by junior attack Nadya Fedun. Farmingdale State answered with four straight scores for a 6-4 advantage, on goals by juniors Alyssa Handel, Nicole Marzocca and Massapequan Jackie Kennedy.

Sophomore attack Ashlynn Parks put Greensboro within a goal at the 7:03 mark, but the Rams scored two more to lead 8-5 at the halftime break.

Calendar

YES Fundraiser

Saturday, April 26

Massapequa Memories

Tuesday, April 29

Spring Fashion Show

Wednesday, April 30



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com