From the CEO...
Are you a member of our auxiliary, The Friends of the Area Agency on Aging?
The success of our agency and the expansion of services offered for seniors in our program service area are due, in great part, to our many partners such as the Friends. Through their efforts each year, they have conducted what has been our largest fundraiser and premier charitable event, The Anne Thacik Charity Auction. Held each autumn, that event is attended by supporters from all across Clearfield and surrounding counties.
Through the auction, the auxiliary has raised important and critical funds for our Area Agency on Aging and the services and programs we provide. Most recently, the auxiliary purchased a van for our Home Delivered Meals Program, which services more than 600 individuals daily by providing a hot nutritionally balanced meal. For many of these individuals, the friendly visit from the meal delivery driver is the only visit they may receive for sometimes months at a time. Before that, our Auxiliary purchased furniture for our first Shared House in Curwensville, which houses 3 individuals who successfully transitioned from nursing home back into community living. The benefit of this change for the individuals and their families has been priceless. They have adapted to transitioning back in to control over their daily life choices; when to get up, what to eat, attending church services and coordinating medical care! The support of the auxiliary in this very new option (for individuals who would otherwise be in an institutional setting) has been so appreciated by the elders who reside there, along with their families. This new and successful initiative has received positive and supportive attention from our local and state representatives as well and will likely result in other entities providing this housing option in the future.
The Auxiliary has been instrumental in supporting new efforts and services to provide seniors with the Right Services, at the Right Time, in the Right Place according to the desires of the seniors. Continued enhancement of our programs, specifically related to a truly person-centered plan, at times requires services and supports that are outside those we are able to offer with our grant funding. The funds raised by the auxiliary provide for these very real needs of individuals in our area. For some, it has been the purchase of a bed to sleep in or a refrigerator to keep food fresh or a plumber to fix a water leak. These very basic services, which many of us take for granted, have helped an enormous number of elders to remain in their homes and communities.
Now, the auxiliary is in the midst of their annual membership campaign. Please consider joining the auxiliary to make this mission of service even stronger in the coming year.
Kathleen Gillespie, CEO
We’re pleased to introduce Kathy Proud as our newest team member. Mrs. Proud began employment on April 17, 2018 as an APPRISE/Ombudsman Representative. This position supports the APPRISE state-wide health insurance counseling program, which provides unbiased advice regarding health insurance options for senior Pennsylvanians. Kathy will also assist our Ombudsman staff, providing training to residents and staff of long term care facilities on resident rights and the PA Department of Aging Long Term Care Ombudsman program. Ombudsmen also serve as resident-directed advocates who help empower residents to address concerns and self-resolve issues.
Mrs. Proud has extensive experience in the insurance industry and customer service arena. Kathy is a Certified Insurance Service Representative, holding this professional designation since 2001. As a personal lines insurance specialist, she has prepared insurance proposals and worked closely with customers to ensure appropriate insurance coverage and company satisfaction. Kathy’s prior employers include Boyles Insurance Agency (an affiliate of St. Mary’s Insurance Agency), Helmbold & Stewart Insurance Agency, and J. Carl Ogden Allstate Insurance Agency. Mrs. Proud also previously worked as an Administrative Assistant for former District Justice Richard Ireland.
Memorial & Honorarium Fund
CCAAA Celebrates National Professional Social Work Month
The Clearfield County Area Agency on Aging, Inc. celebrated Social Worker Month with many of its employees. Carnations were handed out in appreciation of their hard work and dedication to the elderly of Clearfield County. This year’s theme was “Social Workers. Leaders. Advocates. Champions.”
Celebrated each March, National Professional Social Work Month is an opportunity for social workers across the country to turn the spotlight on the profession and highlight the important contributions they make to society.
Our nation’s more than 650,000 social workers have amazing tenacity and talent. They confront some of the most challenging issues facing individuals, families, communities and society and forge solutions that help people reach their full potential and make our nation a better place to live.
To everyone who has already joined our Auxiliary for 2018-2019! The annual meeting will be held Thursday, June 14, 2018, 2 PM at the Clearfield Center for Active Living, 116 South Second Street.
In 2017-2018, 959 people joined our auxiliary. The goal for this year is 975 members. Membership dues are $8 per person and $12 per couple. Members will receive the bi-monthly “Lifespan” newsletter, periodic updates on auxiliary and agency activities, and a discount card for merchants throughout Clearfield County.
If you haven’t already, please help us reach our goal by joining on line at
Eye Care and Medicare
Original Medicare generally does not pay for routine eye care. It does, however pay for the following services and procedures:
Cataract Surgery: Medicare pays for cataract surgery and will help pay for cataract glasses, contact lenses, or intraocular lenses provided by an optometrist. For glasses, only standard frames are covered. Lenses may be covered even if you had surgery prior to your Medicare enrollment. Medicare will make payment for both lenses if the surgery involved one eye.
Macular Degeneration: Medicare covers treatment for some patients with age-related macular degeneration. This treatment is called ocular photodynamic therapy with Verteporfin.
Glaucoma Screening: Medicare covers an annual (once every 12 months) dilated eye examination for all people with Medicare at high risk for glaucoma. This includes people with diabetes, those with a family history of glaucoma and African Americans age 50 or older. The screening must be done or supervised by an eye doctor who is legally allowed to do this service in your state.
Medicare pays for these services under your Part B coverage and will be 80% of the approved amounts after you’ve paid your Medicare part B deductible.
Some Medicare Managed Care plans (HMOs and PPOs) may provide coverage for routine eye exams, eyeglasses or contact lenses. If you are enrolled in one of these plans, please call your plan’s customer service number for details. The number is on the back of your insurance card.
If you need additional help with Medicare or Medicare issues, call CCAAA’s APPRISE program at (814)-765-2696 or (800) 225-8571.
APPRISE is a free health insurance counseling program designed to help older Pennsylvanians with Medicare. Counselors are specially trained volunteers and staff who can answer your questions and provide you with objective and easy to understand information about Medicare, Medicare Supplemental Insurance, Medicaid, and Long-Term Care Insurance.
Another successful year! The Tax-Aide counseling program, sponsored by the Clearfield County Area on Aging Inc., AARP and the IRS, was completed on April 18th, 2018. (Due to the date this article had to go to press we do not have the final results of persons served this year. This information will be announced at a later date.)
Thanks to the dedication of the Tax-Aide volunteers, the burden and expense of filing federal, state, and local income tax is lessened for many citizens of Clearfield County. Our highly dedicated volunteers performed above and beyond, helping as many people as possible. We are pleased to announce that this year, we were able to schedule all who requested help within the program time frame!
The CCAAA would like to thank everyone who helped make this project a success. If you would like to learn more about the Tax-Aide program and how you can take our class to become a volunteer, call the CCAAA at 814-765-2696 or 1-800-225-8571.
CCAAA Staff Receives Training on “A Matter of Balance”
Recently, several members of the Clearfield County Area Agency on Aging, Inc. staff were trained as Lay Leaders in an evidence-based, falls management program for older adults called “A Matter of Balance”. The program is approved by the AOA (Administration on Aging) and NCOA (National Council on the Aging).
An award-winning program, A Matter of Balance (MOB) acknowledges the risk of falling but emphasizes practical coping strategies to reduce this fear. They include promoting a view of falls and fear of falling as controllable, setting realistic goals for increasing activity, changing the environment to reduce fall risk factors, and promoting exercise to increase strength and balance.
The program is designed to benefit community-dwelling older adults who are concerned about falls, have sustained a fall in the past, restrict activities because of concerns about falling, are interested in improving flexibility, balance and strength and are age 60 or older, ambulatory and able to problem-solve.
For more information about this program and our other programs, please contact the CCAAA at 814-765-2696.
CCAAA Offering Healthy Steps In Motion
Losing balance and falling is a widespread problem with serious physical and psychological consequences for older adults. Falls are the leading cause of injury for older adults. Hip fractures are the most devastating injuries for this population. One in 4 older adults who fracture a hip, die within 6 months of the injury. Of those who survive, more than 50% are discharged to a nursing home. Balance can be improved, but it can be complicated to identify the cause or causes of falling because in many cases a combination of factors causes a fall. Developed by the Pennsylvania Department of Aging, Healthy Steps in Motion is a program implemented throughout the state and focuses on reducing falls and improving physical activity.
Healthy Steps began in 2005. It is a comprehensive fall prevention program. Participants in Healthy Steps enjoyed the program but wanted to learn more about exercise. Thus, HSIM was designed to provide more exercises and to include exercises for people age 50 and over with different fitness levels.
HSIM includes education and exercises. The group learns the right way to do an exercise and are guided through the exercise together, lead by trained instructors. The group also learns an exercise routine consisting of a 10 minute warm up, followed by balance and strength exercises (and/or aerobics), followed by cool-down/stretching.
Call the following Centers for Active Living: Clearfield CAL, 765-9319; Coalport CAL, 672-3574; Karthaus CAL, 762-9644; Kylertown CAL 345-6338; Mahaffey CAL 277-4544 for more information. Improve your balance, stamina and flexibility in a safe, friendly environment.
Information on activities of the CCAAA and Centers for Active Living is available by calling the Agency at (814) 765-2696 or 1-800-225-8571 or by visiting the CCAAA website at www.ccaaa.net. Programs and services of the Agency are funded in part by the Pennsylvania Department of Aging, the Clearfield County Area Agency on Aging, Inc., Mature Resources Foundation, and local and consumer contributions.
Plans Underway For Summer Celebration