Problem Of Elder Abuse Addressed By Mid-East Area Agency On Aging

Thursday, January 29th, 2015

ST. LOUIS COUNTY (KSDK) – A case of alleged elder abuse in west St. Louis County is bringing attention to a problem that experts say is getting worse.

Fifty-six-year-old Timothy Barnes is charged with abusing his 82-year-old mother. Court documents show Barnes is accused of allowing his mother to live in total decay, among mold, feces, and broken glass. Police say she was deprived of food and clean water. And, the documents say she’d been bed-ridden for a year, and hadn’t bathed in six months. Those documents also say the victim’s other son would try and help, but Barnes would threaten him.

Experts say similar cases of alleged abuse go unreported all the time.

“It can be very devastating, to know that someone is either being treated like that, or has been treated in a manner that is inappropriate,” said Donna Jasper, a social worker at the Mid-East Area Agency on Aging in St. Louis County.

Jasper has been in the business for 20 years. While she says abuse cases are ‘not the norm,’ even one case is too many.

So, the Area Agency on Agency provides caretaker support groups. And, Missouri and Illinois have abuse reporting hotlines. Missouri’s hotline number is 1-800-392-0210. Illinois’ hotline number is 1-866-800-1409.

For the complete story and to view the video from KSDK TV, PLEASE CLICK HERE

Report: Medicaid Expansion In Missouri Would Yield Up to $100M In Annual Savings

Tuesday, January 13th, 2015

KCUR Radio – 89.3 (Kansas City) -Even as prospects appear bleak for Medicaid expansion in Missouri, a new report says the state would save $81 million right off the bat and $100 million annually later on if it expands the program.

The report by the Missouri Budget Project, a nonpartisan think tank in St. Louis, says the savings would come from money the state currently spends on Medicaid services provided to pregnant women, mental health patients and prisoners in need of medical care.

“This is a real asset to the state,” says Amy Blouin, executive director of the Missouri Budget Project, referring to expansion. “There were legislators who were concerned about the need to invest more state funding in health care services, but what we’re showing in the data is that not only do we invest more dollars overall in health care – not only is it a health care benefit – but because of the cost savings, we actually have a net benefit in general revenue that can be used to support other services as well.”


Missouri: 50,000 New Health Insurance Enrollees In First Month

Saturday, January 3rd, 2015


St. Louis Post Dispatch – About 50,000 Missourians and 65,000 Illinoisans signed up for health insurance on for the first time, according to a federal report released Tuesday.

The report covered sign-ups between Nov. 15 through Dec. 15 — the first month of the enrollment season for 2015 coverage under President Barack Obama’s health overhaul. Those health plans will take effect Jan. 1, provided customers pay their first month’s premium.

Residents still have until Feb. 15 to visit the online insurance marketplace and select a health plan for 2015 coverage.

“Interest in the marketplace has been strong during the first month of open enrollment,” said Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell in a written statement. “We still have a ways to go and a lot of work to do before Feb. 15, but this is an encouraging start.”


Scam Alert – Medical Device In Florida Could Move Here

Tuesday, December 16th, 2014


The FTC and the Office of the Florida Attorney General shut down an Orlando-based scheme that took money from older people by blasting them with illegal robocalls to push “free” medical alert systems. The FTC says that the company told people that the alert system was bought for them by someone they knew. People who expressed interest were transferred to a live telemarketer who falsely claimed the American Heart Association, the American Diabetes Association, and the National Institute on Aging recommended the systems. The telemarketers also said the $34.95 monthly monitoring fee would be charged only after the system was installed and activated, but people were charged immediately, regardless of whether the system was activated.

As reported, this scam has been reported in Florida. Do not respond to similar offers in Missouri.


Spotlight Marketplace Event: West Plains

Friday, December 5th, 2014

This week’s spotlight Health Insurance Marketplace event is an open enrollment session in West Plains. The special session is scheduled from 10 AM until 3 PM on December 13 at the Lybyer Enhanced Technology Center in West Plains. Navigators will be on hand to help answer questions about the Health Insurance Marketplace and help both new and returning applicants.

For additional information contact Treva Warrick at 417-862-0762 Ext. 245 or by email at

Spotlight Marketplace Activity – Columbia, MO

Tuesday, December 2nd, 2014

Health Insurance Marketplace Open Enrollment 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturday at the Daniel Boone Regional Library in Columbia, MO.

Workshops take place every Saturday through Feb. 14. Trained staff from one of four local community agencies will help you review plans, choose one that meets your needs and assist you with enrollment. Participating agencies are Central Missouri Area Agency on Aging, Central Missouri Community Action, Family Health Center and Primaris/KMA. Walk-ins welcome.

For more activities around Missouri, CLICK HERE.

Scam Alert: Business and Individuals Targeted In Power Scam

Friday, November 21st, 2014

Ahead of another busy holiday season, Ameren Missouri wants you to be aware that scam artists continue operating in our service area. While many scams are aimed at our residential customers, small businesses are also targeted. Thieves posing as Ameren Missouri representatives will call a business and demand payment immediately or risk disconnection of service. The scam artists typically state that payment must be made in the form of a money card, usually a Green Dot MoneyPak card. Once the business gives the thief the PIN from the money card, the cash is withdrawn from the card. They money cannot be traced and is not refundable.

This scam is not limited to Green Dot cards. A so-called vanilla money card that uses the same cash-loading process may also be used.

Scam artists are taking advantage of the rush of holiday shopping to confuse customers over the phone. In some instances, thieves may also manipulate the caller ID function to indicate they are calling from an Ameren Missouri number.

Please be aware Ameren Missouri representatives never call to demand payment or otherwise use intimidation techniques. Follow these tips to avoid being a victim of this scam.

•    Never give your credit card, debit card, Social Security, ATM, checking or saving account numbers to anyone who calls or sends an email requesting this information.
•    Never allow anyone into your business who wants to check your electrical wiring, natural gas pipes or appliances unless you have scheduled an appointment or have reported a natural gas leak and the person has proper identification.
•    Ameren Missouri employees always carry photo identification, which includes name, employee number and an official Ameren Missouri logo.
•    If you suspect someone is impersonating an Ameren Missouri employee, end the conversation and immediately call Ameren Missouri, 1.800.552.7583.

Renewing Coverage In Health Insurance Marketplace Is Easier Than Ever

Friday, November 14th, 2014

For most consumers who are renewing coverage, up to 90 percent of their application will be pre-filled based on last year’s application. And a new streamlined application reduces the number of screens to 16 with fewer clicks to navigate through the questions for most consumers signing up for the first time. Last year, consumers went through 76 screens to sign up for coverage. This year, along with a simpler, faster application, consumers can shop and enroll on a smartphone, tablet, computer, or by calling the call center or with in-person assistance.

Winter Weather Is Here – Be Prepared

Friday, November 14th, 2014

That pesky senior citizen – Old Man Winter – has crept up on us a little earlier than usual. Now is the time to make sure you keep safe and warm this season. Make sure your furnace is in good operating condition; don’t light a fire in your fireplace until you are sure it is clean and safe for this season; make sure any portable heaters are free of any debris or nearby flammable products; and make sure the main storm windows on your home are closed for extra insulation.

In the event you lose power or heat, seek shelter at another place until your services can be restored. Warming centers and other services are available throughout the state. CLICK HERE for a list of warming centers nearest you.

KC Communities For All Ages Receives Important Grant

Monday, November 10th, 2014

The Mid-America Regional Council will receive $120,000 to continue its work to help area communities become more age-friendly. This is the third year that MARC has received funds from Grantmakers In Aging’s Community AGEnda initiative, which focuses on helping communities across America become great places to grow up and grow old.

With this new grant, MARC’s KC Communities for All Ages (KCC) initiative will help area cities prepare for rapidly growing numbers of older residents. The number of adults over age 65 is expected to double by 2030, reaching an estimated 416,367.

“Most older adults want to be able to age in place, maintaining their independence, contributing to their community, and enjoying their family and friends,” said Barbara Potts, co-chair of KCC. “This new Community AGEnda grant will help us continue to plan and work to make that possible. Making our communities more age-friendly benefits everyone.”

Building on its earlier work — including a toolkit for local governments and checklist of age-friendly community characteristics — KCC will work with three cities, including Grandview, Gladstone and one to be determined, to test a Community for All Ages recognition program and will provide technical assistance to four additional communities. MARC and KCC will also conduct an economic impact analysis of the region’s 65+ population; launch a professional network of elected officials and city staff to support ongoing understanding of age-friendly issues and programs; create an online resource library; host a series of housing workshops; and identify meaningful intergenerational messages to engage and inform people across the region.

Using funds provided by the Pfizer Foundation, GIA awarded grants to five Community AGEnda communities, including the Kansas City region; Maricopa County, Arizona; Miami-Dade County, Florida; metro Atlanta, Georgia; and the state of Indiana. MARC and KCC secured local matching funds from the WJ Brace Charitable Trust, Bank of America Trustee; Roger A. and Corinne R. Durkee Fund, Greater Kansas City Community Foundation; MARC Area Agency on Aging; Truman-Heartland Community Foundation; and AARP Missouri.

“Making our communities more age-friendly means helping people live better by staying involved, healthy, and independent, able to live in their own homes as long as they want to, and maintaining important connections to families, neighbors, and communities,” said John Feather, PhD, CEO of Grantmakers In Aging.

“The global movement to make our communities more age-friendly is a smart and forward-looking response to our changing demographics,” said Oonagh Puglisi, Executive Director of the Pfizer Foundation. “Both the Pfizer Foundation and Pfizer Inc. recognize that healthier lifestyles, improved mobility, and stronger connections to community are important factors in improving quality of life for older adults and everyone in our communities.”

What is an age-friendly community?

Efforts to make communities age-friendly can include improving mobility and walkability; informing regional planning efforts; designing affordable, accessible housing; promoting healthy lifestyles; improving access to public services; and increasing volunteer, intergenerational, and social opportunities.

GIA: Spreading the word about age-friendly communities

To help communities everywhere become more age-friendly, Grantmakers In Aging will increase awareness of the movement through collaborative and knowledge-sharing projects with major age-friendly groups.

Year three will feature:

•       A new quarterly age-friendly e-newsletter (“Great Places”).

•       A series of age-friendly talking tools for practitioners.

•       An informational overview of the age-friendly movement geared to urban planners and transportation and housing professionals.

•       A series of age-friendly issue briefs.

•       A “lessons learned” paper based on the experiences of the Community AGEnda sites.

•       “Say Hello,” an intergenerational social media campaign and photo contest.

Earlier work has included infographics highlighting age-friendly facts and trends; short videos about the work of the Community AGEnda sites; an age-friendly photography contest; and a national searchable database of age-friendly programs across America, all available at

About KC Communities for All Ages

KC Communities for All Ages, an initiative originally founded as KC4 Aging in Community by the Center for Practical Bioethics, transitioned to the Mid-America Regional Council in June 2012. KCC works to ensure that the region is prepared to meet the needs of an expanding older population, accelerating local efforts to make area communities age-friendly places to grow up and grow old and ensuring that older adults are valued, understood, respected and involved. KCC envisions Greater Kansas City as a region of vibrant communities that build on the strengths and serve the needs of individuals of all ages.

About Grantmakers In Aging (GIA)

Grantmakers In Aging is an inclusive and responsive membership organization comprised of all types of philanthropies with a common dedication to improving the experience of aging.  GIA members have a shared recognition that a society that is better for older adults is a society that is better for people of all ages. For more information, please visit

About The Pfizer Foundation

The Pfizer Foundation is a charitable organization established by Pfizer Inc. Its mission is to promote access to quality health care, to nurture innovation, and to support the community involvement of Pfizer colleagues. The Pfizer Foundation provides funding and resources to local and international organizations that expand and improve global health strategies. In 2013 the Foundation provided over $17.7 million in grants and employee matching gifts to non-governmental organizations across the United States.

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