Archive for August, 2012

Boomer Alert: CDC Recommends Hepatitis C Screenings

Monday, August 27th, 2012

Boomer Alert: CDC Recommends Hepatitis C Screenings

The number of Americans dying from Hepatitis C related diseases nearly doubled from 1999 to 2007. And one in 30 baby boomers have been infected and might not even know it. These statistics come to us from the CDC who is now urging that baby boomers get tested for Hepatitis C. Baby boomers are defined as those born between 1945 and 1965.

It is possible that people were infected by blood transfusions, tattoos, piercing, shared razors, toothbrushes, even manicures. Of course other means of infection with Hepatitis C are sharing drug needles and sexual contact. This blood-borne virus can cause liver damage and it may take years for symptoms to appear. In addition to liver damage, Hepatitis C is linked to liver disease and liver cancer. The CDC estimates that more than 15,000 Americans die each year from Hepatitis C related illnesses.

Screening for Hepatitis C used to just be recommended for those at risk, like drug users. According to CDC, risk-based screening will continue, but is not sufficient alone.  More than 2 million U.S. baby boomers are infected with hepatitis C – accounting for more than 75 percent of all American adults living with the virus.  Studies show that many baby boomers could have been infected with the virus decades ago, did not perceive themselves to be at risk, and have never been screened.

The CDC estimates one-time Hepatitis C testing of baby boomers could identify more than 800,000 additional people with hepatitis C.  And with newly available therapies that can cure up to 75 percent of infections, expanded testing – along with linkage to appropriate care and treatment – would prevent the costly consequences of liver cancer and other chronic liver diseases and save more than 120,000 lives.

The CDC states that without some intervention the statistics will only get worse and the number of infected and the number of deaths will continue to rise. Another reason the CDC is recommending testing now for baby boomers is that there are two new drugs on the market. Treatment for Hepatitis can vary and after receiving results patients should consult with a physician to decide the best treatment plan for them.

More information about Hepatitis C is available at http://www.cdc.gov/knowmorehepatitis/

Foundation’s Annual Fall Event and Honoree Dinner Announced!

Tuesday, August 21st, 2012

Foundation’s Annual Fall Event and Honoree Dinner Announced!

The New Jersey Foundation for Aging (NJFA) will hold its 5th Annual Fall Fundraising event on Sunday, Oct. 21, 2012. The event will begin with a 2 pm Matinee at the George Street Playhouse to see the production, One Slight Hitch. The show is written by The Daily Show’s Lewis Black and is described as “a smart modern farce”.

Following the performance at the George Street Playhouse, guests will be invited to the Honoree Award Dinner at the Heldrich Hotel. This year NJFA is honoring Katherine M. Klotzburger, Ph.D., Founder, President and Executive Director of the Silver Century Foundation (SCF). After nearly four decades of devoting herself to social and political issues affecting women’s lives, Kay created the Silver Century Foundation in 2003. She brings her vast experience in advocacy, academia and consulting to helping others—women and men of all ages—succeed in their quests to age well.

Dr. Klotzburger spent nearly 30 years in academic administration, primarily at the City University of New York, and as a management consultant specializing in organizational effectiveness and equal opportunity. She was the director of the CUNY Affirmative Action Office. She served as the coordinator of the American Council on Education’s program in the New York tri-state area, where she guided efforts to help women advance into major positions in academic administration. In addition to her work in the academic field, she founded Change-Agents, Inc., a management consulting practice providing consulting, counseling and training to colleges, small businesses and individuals wishing to make career transitions.

The Silver Century Foundation (SCF) promotes a positive view of aging. The Foundation challenges entrenched and harmful stereotypes, encourages dialogue between generations, advocates planning for the second half of life, and raises awareness to educate and inspire everyone to live long, healthy, empowered lives. SCF has provided key support for local senior transportation and to promote community dialogue on aging. SCP has partnered with the NJFA on projects related to mobility, public awareness and elder economics.

Dinner will feature an award presentation, a silent auction, a 50/50 raffle and a menu that is sure to please. More information, invitations and sponsorship opportunities are available by visiting our website, www.njfoundationforaging.org/events.html, or by calling the office, 609-421-0206 Or contact us by email: office@njfoundationforaging.org

Many Considerations Regarding Social Security Benefits, Who Knew?

Monday, August 6th, 2012

Many Considerations Regarding Social Security Benefits, Who Knew?

File and Suspend. Sounds like orders for a top secret spy. But no, it is a term used in the world of Social Security benefits. File and suspend means that someone can apply for their Social Security Retirement benefits but then suspend receiving their payments. Why? Well some people want to delay collecting their Social Security because there is a retirement bonus for putting off collecting your benefits. The reason that some individuals may elect to file and then suspend those benefits is so a husband or wife can collect spousal benefits presently and the individual can still receive the delayed bonus when they unsuspended their benefits at age 70.

Confused? So were we. Upon reading about this in a Social Security advice column in the Trenton Times, we did some research. There is a lot of information online about Social Security benefits and financial advice regarding applying for your benefits. As always, we suggest you start at the source and only trust information from the Social Security Administration website. This page on the Social Security Administration website, http://www.ssa.gov/retire2/suspend.htm tells you about your option to suspend benefits and a few cautions before making your decision.

If you receive Medicare Part B, you will be billed directly by Medicare for that premium which is usually deducted straight from your Social Security payment. If you suspend and are not receiving a Social Security payment but still are enrolled in Medicare Part B you will be billed for your premium for that coverage. The other caution which may affect less people is that if you are an SSI recipient, suspending your Social Security Retirement benefit will make you ineligible for your SSI benefits.

So, if you want to hold off until age 70 to receive your Social Security Retirement benefits and receive  bonus for delaying your benefits, whatever the reason may be, you can do so by using the file and suspend method. If you have questions or need further advice contact the Social Security Administration online at www.ssa.gov, on the phone at  1-800-772-1213, or TTY number, 1-800-325-0778, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Monday through Friday. You can also contact your financial advisor.

Be sure to read the next issue of Renaissance magazine for important information on financial planning, social security and more. Don’t know how to find it? Ask us at office@njfoundationforaging.org