First designated in 1963, Older Americans Month has been celebrated each May. It was conceived as an opportunity to recognize
the contribution of older adults, past and present, and to highlight the needs of aging Americans. Fifty-two years later, Older
Americans Month still gives us a lot to celebrate and talk about. The theme for Older Americans Month 2015 is ‘Get into the Act’. The emphasis is
on promoting healthy aging, community involvement and shining the spotlight on issues important to older Americans today. The aging landscape is considerably different
than fifty years ago. In 1963 one third of older adults were living in poverty without any type of formal supports such as Medicare. Seventeen million Americans had
celebrated their sixty-fifth birthday; in 2010 the figure topped forty million. Today people are not only reaching age 65, they are living decades longer.
This year’s theme is a call to action. Individually and collectively, we are called to address the aging landscape of today and to plan and prepare accordingly. Our
personal decisions and lifestyle choices can impact how we age. This is also true of larger entities. Many communities are seeking ‘age friendly’ designation and are considering
policy and infrastructure decisions that reflect that. The Northborough Senior Center is a ready and willing partner in this call to action. The Senior Center has purposefully
sought to address some of these issues by offering an array of exercise and fitness classes, health and lifestyle presentations and resources, opportunities for socialization
and involvement and transportation. ‘Get into the Act’ at the Northborough Senior Center.
Jocelyn Ehrhardt, MSW
NEED HELP WITH PRESCRIPTION DRUG COSTS? PRESCRIPTION ADVANTAGE MAY BE YOUR ANSWER!
Prescription Advantage is a state-run program which helps many seniors pay for their prescription drugs. Eligibility is based on
income only and there is no asset limit! Who can join? If you are a Massachusetts resident, eligible for Medicare, and are:
• 65 years or older with an annual income at or less than $58,850 for a single person or $79,650 for a married couple
• Under 65 years and disabled, with an annual income at or less than $22,128 for a single person or $29,948 for a married couple.
You may also join… if you are 65 years or older and not eligible for Medicare. There is no income limit. There is no charge for joining Prescription
Advantage, if you have an annual income at or less than $35,310 for a single person and $47,790 for a married couple. There is a $200 per person annual enrollment fee for
those with higher incomes. Call Prescription Advantage today to enroll on the phone or ask for an application form. You can reach Prescription Advantage at
1-800-AGE-INFO (1-800-243-4636), then press or say 2. You may also apply on line by going to www.prescriptionadvantagema.org . For further assistance with any Medicare
issue, contact the SHINE Program. Trained SHINE volunteers offer free, confidential counseling on all aspects of Medicare and related health insurance programs. To
schedule a SHINE appointment, call your local Senior Center. For other SHINE related matters, call 1-800-AGE-INFO (1-800-243-4636), then press or say 3. Once you get the
SHINE answering machine, leave your name and number. A volunteer will call you back, as soon as possible.
Counselors: Pauline O’Bray/Linda Warren/Wayne Wirtanen
SHINE (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Everyone) appointments are available with our SHINE Counselors. Please call the Senior Center at 508-393-5035 to schedule your appointment.