As we have heard at the MassNAELA meeting, the regulations that were proposed by MassHealth in November are expected to be implemented at the end of September. Although the final regulations have not been published, they are near completion and we understand that the proposal to discontinue allowing MassHealth eligible people 65 and older to contribute to pooled trusts will be included.
MassNAELA, along with other pooled trust organizations, filed legislation in January to ensure that disabled seniors 65 and older would continue to be able to utilize these trusts, essentially keeping what is currently in the regulations. This legislation is in the Health Care Finance Committee and had a public hearing on May 2nd, 2017. Because the regulations seem to be just weeks away from being implemented, the legislation is the best alternative to these damaging regulations.
Please call your legislator by September 29th to inform them of this legislation and ask them to contact the Health Care Finance Chairmen to move the bill out of Committee with a favorable report.
Here's how to do this:
1. Find out who your state legislator is here: http://www.sec.state.ma.us/wheredoivotema/bal/MyElectionInfo.aspx
2. Look to see if they are on the Health Care Finance Committee:
House Members: Peter Kocot(Chairman), Jeffery Roy (Vice Chairman), James M. Cantwell, Carolyn C. Dykema, Tackey Chan, Daniel Cullinane, Daniel M. Donahue, John C. Velis, Carmine L. Gentile, Steven Ultrino, Randy Hunt, Mathew Muratore, Leonard Mirra.
Senate Members: James Welch(Chairman), Joseph Boncore (Vice Chairman), Michael J. Barrett, Barbara A. L'Italien, Eric P. Lesser, Jason M. Lewis, Bruce E. Tarr.
3. See the attached bill texts to see if your legislator co-sponsored the legislation. The House bill is the same as the Senate bill except for the names of legislators who co-sponsored each bill.
4. Call your Representative's and Senator's office and say this (only add in the piece about HCF Committee member if they are):
"Hi, my name is ____ and I'm a constituent of (Representative/Senator) _____. I understand that the (Rep or Senator) is a member of the Health Care Finance Committee and I wanted to speak to someone about a bill in that Committee.
As a constituent, I want to urge the (Rep/Senator) to protect disabled seniors by contacting the Health Care Finance Chairmen, Senator Welch and Representative Kocot, and urging them to provide H2074/S629 with a favorable report immediately. MassHealth has proposed regulations that are expected to be implemented by the end of the month that will harm disabled seniors by not allowing them to utilize pooled trusts while remaining eligible for MassHealth. Pooled trusts allow disabled individuals to keep assets in a highly regulated special needs trust that allows them to maintain their quality of life by permitting them to pay for services and care not covered by MassHealth. MassHealth is paid the excess in the account up to the cost of MassHealth services when the individual passes away. This legislation will maintain the policy that has been followed by MassHealth for 20 years enabling those disabled individuals to continue to maintain those trusts. It does not add more individuals to MassHealth or require any additional funding.
SRC's Commitment To Nutrition, Health And Wellness
Before you assume its Dementia, make sure you aren't deficient in these vitamins or minerals
The storyline of a dementia diagnosis plays out the same way for families across the world. A loved one’s memory begins to worsen slowly, basic chores that require thought become increasingly difficult; they begin asking the same question over and over before you take them in for a CT to confirm the worst case scenario. The prognosis looks bleak…
However, new studies have found that some dementia diagnosis’ could, in fact, be down to a physical imbalance caused by any number of nutritional imbalances. In fact, one study found that 41% of reported dementia cases that were misdiagnosed. According to one study from UCLA and the Buck Institute for Research on Aging, the decreased mental faculties that we associate with dementia are reversible.
So if you believe you or a loved one might be experiencing the early signs of dementia, take the time to address the following seven imbalances that commonly lead to misdiagnosis, alongside your trip to the doctor.
In almost every study done with sufferers of Alzheimer’s disease doctors have found that their patients have had an extremely low magnesium count. Alongside these facts, there is evidence that people with higher magnesium levels have a lower susceptibility to the disease. It is apparent to those in the medical community that a link exists between the two.
Studies are still being done to substantiate the claims that ‘an increased magnesium intake can help reverse dementia.’ However, for those suffering in the earlier stages of impaired cognitive functionality, it is highly recommended to up your dietary intake of magnesium.
The idea of fish as ‘brain food’ is nothing new, but in recent years the evidence to support the claims have gained further traction. Omega 3 is a fat found in cell membranes, and when it is present in brain cells, it improves both the efficiency and the functionality of our minds.
One study, which used over 2,000 individuals, showed that increasing the amount of omega 3in the diets of its participants led to a 41% decrease in dementia sufferers. The natural mental decline that comes with age can be slowed by omega 3 intake.
Scientists at the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Israel, produced a study that suggests that a vitamin B12 deficiency produces similar symptoms to dementia. Although further research is needed, the initial evidence shows signs that dementia brought about by this is reversible by increasing your intake through diet and supplements.
Vitamin D has been shown to have a positive effect on degenerative brain conditions in several studies. Among people over the age of 65, the rate of vitamin D deficiency is at a staggering 95% and is believed to be one of the lead causes of dementia. Not only does Vitamin D improve the strength of your brain’s receptors, but it also increases the recovery speed of damaged neurons.
Selenium’s positive effects on Parkinson’s sufferers have been well documented, but the impact they have on dementia patients is only in the early stages of research. One study by the Brazilian Federal University of Sergipe has begun to provide evidence that shows boosting your selenium levels can help fight off and reverse the damaging effects of dementia.
The team found that selenium could contribute to strengthening the dopaminergic cells, which are responsible for dopamine production. The release of higher levels of dopamine into your system then has a positive impact on brain functionality.
As part of the UCLA and Buck Institute study, one of the fundamental ingredients to a dementia reversal diet was probiotics. An imbalance of bacteria in the gut limits the number of nutrients your body can extract from other food. This, in turn, leads you to be unable to process enough of the other vitamins and minerals on this list that are essential to fighting off degenerative brain diseases.
An estimated 10-15% of nursing home patients are believed to be there due to a lack of the thyroid hormone T3, rather than dementia. T3 is responsible for protein synthesis, which affects nearly every system in the body from digestive to neurological. If our hormones are out of balance, it affects our ability to digest new information, causing us to replay old information e.g. asking the same questions over and over.
SRC's Recipe Of The Month
Instead of an actual recipe, start using "Manaka" honey as it kills more bacteria than all available antibiotics.
Study: Manuka honey kills more bacteria than all available antibiotics
Not all honey is created equal. While the benefits of raw, unprocessed honey have been well-documented over the centuries, Australian researchers have found one type of honey, called Manuka honey, to be better than all known antibiotics.
Manuka honey is produced by bees that forage on the nectar of Leptospermum Scoparium, or New Zealand’s Manuka bush, as well as tea trees, native to Australia and New Zealand only.
This remarkable type of honey not only effectively kills bacteria, but none of the bugs killed by it have been able to build up immunity. In a world where many of the last resort antibiotics are failing against antibiotic-resistant superbugs, Manuka honey may hold the key to fighting resistance issues, saving thousands of lives worldwide.
Manuka honey fights superbugs
Dr. Dee Carter from the University of Sydney’s School of Molecular and Microbial Biosciences noted that antibiotics not only have short shelf lives, but the bacteria they attack quickly become resistant as well, making them useless over time.
The report, published in the European Journal of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, claimed that Manuka honey killed almost every bacteria and pathogen it was tested on. Unlike all antibiotics available on today’s market, none of the bugs tested were able to survive the honey treatment.
According to Dr. Carter, there are particular compounds, like methylglyoxal, in the Manuka honey that cause multi-system failure in the bacteria, killing them before they are able to adapt and build up immunity.
What Manuka honey can do for you
Manuka’s biological properties range from antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antiviral, antibiotic and wound healing, to immune-stimulatory. However, what separates Manuka honey from the rest is that its antibacterial powers challenge even the toughest superbugs, such as the life-threatening methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).
Manuka honey is marketed for cancer treatment and prevention, high cholesterol, chronic inflammation, diabetes, the treatment of gastrointestinal problems, and eye, ear and sinus infections. However, it might be most useful in treating skin wounds and leg ulcers.
According to one study, published in the scientific journal Peer J, chronic wounds are becoming a major global health problem, due to antibiotic resistance issues. They are costly and difficult to treat, and bacterial biofilms are important contributors to the delay in healing. There is an urgent need for new, effective agents in topical wound care, and honey has shown some great potential in this regard.
For their study, researchers reviewed Manuka honey in particular as an alternative treatment for wounds because of its broad-spectrum antibacterial activity and the inability of bacteria to develop resistance to it. Their study indicated that honey might prevent bacterial biofilms and eliminate established biofilms. Furthermore, they reported that Manuka honey could successfully be used to kill all MSSA and MRSA biofilms in a chronic wound, supporting the use of this type of honey as an effective topical treatment for chronic wound infections.
In recent years, word of the biological benefits of Manuka honey has spread to every corner of the world, turning it into one of the most popular superfoods out there. Its fame and the over-demand, however, have caused shortages, resulting in fake, usually cheaper, products to enter the market. So, if you are going to spend your money on honey to reap its benefits, make sure you are buying the real thing.