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Special Edition with Sue Henry

Feb 24, 2017|

This week on Special Edition, details of the LIFE Geisinger program that aims to keep seniors in the own homes while offering social activities and medical care; an interview with former presidential candidate and media mogul Steve Forbes about taxes, jobs and his upcoming talk at Wilkes University focusing on entrepreneurship and a details about Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf's budget that he discussed in Wilkes-Barre with seniors.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

Welcome to a special edition. A weekly look at these issues in the news and the personalities shaping the stories special edition is a production of Entercom communications. The views expressed by guests are not necessarily those of Entercom communications staff. Management or sponsors and now here's your host soon Henry. On today's show. Will learn about an innovative program aimed at keeping seniors in their homes longer and giving them a place to go for companionship. And medical attention. Will also talked to former presidential candidate and media mogul Steve Forbes about taxes jobs. And his upcoming talk at Wilkes University focusing on entrepreneurship. Will also get deet tails about Pennsylvania's state budget that was unveiled in Harrisburg. And was the focus of governor Tom Wolfe's a visit to wilkes-barre this week. The ability to live independently in one's own home is a desire most have how ever it does become much more complicated in the later years. When simple tasks become complex and health issues make it much more difficult. Eight program available in northeastern Pennsylvania called life guys singer. Aims to assist residents with these basic tasks while providing a safe place to go during the day for social activities meals and doctors' appointments. Liked guys singer got its start in the lack of wanna county three partnership with Mary would university. And it's also based in Culp mops. Most recently it was added to the campus of guys in your south Wilkes-Barre in the former mercy hospital. We recently had the opportunity to discuss this program with Robert McClellan. Associate vice president for guys in your care continuum. Like this and Akron that's living independently for elders this programs designed for people who would be H 55 or older and who would meet the medical criteria to be in a nursing center and it's through our program were able to manage their means and try to keep them in their home or their community environment as long as possible since. They're really good idea to to take a long time to get her off the ground despite the fact that it seems like a really good idea. I mean there are certainly a lot of regulatory hurdles and funding in building codes that you have to meet but for the most part. The real hurdle is getting over people and not fully understanding the program. And once they really kinda get the concepts. Believing that it's too good to be true. That you know here's a program where. If pilot in the communities there's no out of pocket expenses deductibles no co payments everything is coordinated by it team of people that look after me you know I mean it on an individual basis. And that we really do try to keep them at home or wherever they would like to live. In the media as long as possible the only time that there's any out of pocket expenses if they have to go into nursing sooner. For an extended period of time and there is harsh here with that but as with this visit serve medications or anything like that. Are no co pays and deductible. I was a fund and authors multiple ways this funded. For people who were eligible for both Medicare. And Medicaid the state and the federal government cius decapitated rate. And with that cap to you reap we coordinated he wore all of the medical expenses for the individual. If the person is not many he'd eligible. They could be seat 65 or older and eligible for Medicare but their resources are above the financial eligibility for many key then they would privately paid for. Committee key portion of that and that runs about 4500. Dollars. A month war that particular individual. Sometimes that are people that. We walk away from the program you know 4500 dollars does sound like have you some money on the monthly basis however they really need to go back and do the math what are your -- these dollars deductibles. Where are you looking at them a monthly expense and then compare that to you know if you were. In a nursing senator. What is the cost of care for partners in San monthly basis it might be more cost effective to use whatever resources. And spend them down to. Meet the financial eligibility for medical assistance while others in the community with this type of program rather than going into Anderson's manner. And and using all of their resources and then they have new. Money to return back to communities yours their apartments com there furniture gone. Who is a good participants for this program. We service all individuals who meet the criteria where are not strictly related her restricted to the dicier. I mean corporate voice your primary care physicians. We service members of the community as long as they meet eligibility for the program. That they can live in the community safely. They meet the medical criteria that there is whether they qualify for Medicare Medicaid and that's our team individuals. Feel that they can be means safely and when people come to this program is it every day of the week how did they get here. That's one of the unique things of this program it's tailored to that individual's needs. Part of the enrollment process. Our. Interdisciplinary teams or. Physician nurse practitioners social workers therapists. Transportation and food service dietitian rack for recreation therapists and they'll meet with this individual votes are with the family members. And we try to do a lot of wraparound services so if there is a family member that's the primary caregiver in the work five days a week. The may be will determine this person needs services by decently if they need services three days a week because we just need to release some caregiver stress then we'll schedule for three days a week but they have the flexibility to increase the amount of time or decrease the amount of time there's no set regiment that they have to come. X number of days we are participants that come once a month. We have to Spencer come five days a week they change sometimes their daily weekly attendance because. Findlay is in town out of towners special. We've haven't changed because they entertainment that's coming it you know we try to accommodate their individual needs and again. If we can meet their needs and we can keep them happy and we can keep them healthy and keep them in the community it's a benefit for them. As is singing that they keeping people healthy. When they are in an environment like this I guess there are some specialized eyes on them. If that's a good way to put it of people who Maine noticed something that if there alone all the time somebody else would not notice. It really starts. With our transportation staff our drivers will actually go out to their home. They'll go actually go into the home and assist them from their home city to the van they tend to be a lot of eyes in the years the senator. They'll notice that something isn't right it was difficult walking this person to the band today or whatever. We also do personal care aides that going to the home. During the morning or tonight or weekends. They'll also pick up that there are subtle changes with these individuals that information is brought back to the senator and now we talk about the senator you have. A team of individuals that offering any specific perspective about that individual by the discipline. So whether it's social work or physical therapy or occupational or clinic owners or home care. They'll take that information and they'll say we need to coordinate more services. Around this person's needs their having. Maybe they're starting an upper respiratory virus or something like that sweetie you know stardom on the medication we mice and impersonal carried in the evening. To make sure that they took their medication and if there's any you know when making that they need to do for the evening they also up for the morning. Send their personal carried in the morning make sure that there are dressed and ready to go. We can tailor it to their individual means there's really no. One size fits all it's all individualized. And we work with you know the theme Lian the other caregivers. To provide that additional support service. In your opinion is the future of aging. In America more geared toward trying to keep people. In their own homes. In my opinion yes and there's there's been this long standing. Trying to joke in the long term care field that. You know the first person that you meet that wanted to go to nursing home will be the first person that you've ever met that wanted to do that. Nursing centers are an important part of long term care and we're not here to replace them for most people. As they grew older or have more needs or whatever. Don't wanna give up their independence they don't wanna leave their home they don't wanna leave their surroundings are being these are friends and memories of their entire life that they had been brought to us senator where it's a different routine and you might have a roommate it's just it's very upsetting to individuals I think as. We start to provide more services that are enabled. People who live in the community need those individual needs and it's it's more cost effective for state and federal governments to say. Here's an allotment of money you mean it's all the care needs of this individual. In the community you Pete for all of their services you know if there's money left over great. If there's not any money either and you take the loss were very objective with. The types of services that we provide we look for ways to maximize now. If we're going to have tests and procedures and things of that nature are we gonna have a benefit today individuals and work with the defame me it's hard to them about. You know fear of extremely member has this high and medical procedure or whatever. Is there really going to be any benefit to them are they going to have you know better quality of life at the end and if they are great and let's go forward. But if they're not them but sit down and talk about it if you decide to go forward with a okay fine we're with you. But some families feel that you know they're pressured into some things they're being given an option. You know the members telling them this is what they need to do. Most. Care and services. If they can be brought back to the home level. A lot of people just need a little bit of assistance. They they don't necessarily need the the eyes of a skilled nurse or a therapist every day every minute. They need some help in their home they need some help with meals needs some assistance to transportation. Making sure that they get their medications that they take them appropriately. And that goes a long way with keeping people in the. He Allen had this history this program a little bit and talk about. Where you started and may be worth the successes are and maybe some of the things that were tinkered with a little bit the program initially started to roll out in 2005. Life Basinger was working with. The office of long term living and trying to some secure areas in which. Life was going like facing was going to operate now a life program. Has and it's not really a franchise but we have the rights war so it all of a particular county we were teamed up with. The sisters the immaculate heart of Mary that Mary would. Was also looking to do this progressive. Care model to take care of their sisters we we started the life program in 2006. On the campus of Mary would. At the sisters retirement home there are leave peace residence so we leased space from the sisters and then they had their residence on the other side. And was a very. Very good relationship because there was a populations of sisters it needed are services and it started our program with. A number of people who were already eligible and we couldn't rule. Where that program. And our relationship with the sisters at screen has been very positive they've had a number of sisters have come through their program. They've opened the doors of their residents to our participants for the program that can come there. Receive care and services you know at at the residents there. They invite us over for mass the have a share in special functions that are going on so. It's been a very good relationship between the lakers in your program and the sisters of the I HM. In 2000 and eat like Basinger started it the first world life program or peace as it's known nationally. A program for their own to secure the elderly in Pennsylvania there's that prescription card call peace and so. You couldn't use the same thing. So the first rural program was started by life facing here in the town couple months which is about. Twenty miles south of Danville. And that program encompassed. All or portions of northumberland Columbia month's war and school local counties about a twenty mile radius. In the air you know we opened up with northumberland county housing authority. It was a converted for a school. That we added on to the gym in the auditorium. So that we would have additional space there and we opened that in 2008. So we had basically two programs that were running one in. Michael wanna count me with a couple of zip codes in the northern portion of it was learned. And then yet coal mine running school cool northumberland Columbia much work counties. And then we decided that it was time for us to expand. If there were more needs in the dicier footprints there were more. Our community groups coming to us saying look this is a program we'd like to see come to our area so what we did was we expanded out zip codes. Would probably 81 quart or. From. Scranton down into will spare so it covers. Basically now the screen life center covers everything from. All of lack of one academy all the way down taxes it's the and Coke and we dropped what we call an alternate care site so at south Wilkes bare. We took some space that used to be the reception. Registration in registrar. Office here and turned it into. An adult a program. And by doing that. There were individuals who couldn't roll now from wilkes-barre and I have to travel all the way to Scranton every day for care and services that they can come here. Where that the news on that specialized and yet we would have to take them out to Scranton. But the beauty with the south will spur location is. It has an outpatient therapy as an outpatient lab. It has you know security are right he hasn't been told urging here. Senator that if there was something that was going on with a participant we have other services that rapid access to them. We found that that model worked very well for us so now we're taking them model and looking at other areas. In our. Current geographic area to say where else can we expand with that model where else can we bring life program to that particular area. So that individuals can receive care services close to where they live. Because unfortunately. In northeast Pennsylvania there's mountain ranges. And people don't wanna go over mountain ranges across rivers or wherever so if we can bring. Those services local to them it doesn't have to be the full blown program. You know those programs here at south Wilkes bare. It's not it's really an adult day program. Includes meals and activities and it was small clinics base. But if we can replicate that most people really just need that type of service. We can telemann and we can transport routes for other important appointments or anything along those lines are there other facilities across the country that are. Replicating this effort successful I wanna say peace operates in 37. States and nationally it in virtually started with what was called on lock experiments. In San Francisco California. Where it was a group. And on Wednesday that they were. Predominately Chinese. The only thing got together to say there's a better way to provide care and services to our feet and we members. So they started this demonstration to say if we. Did activities in mules and kind of took care of them in an environment. Where we knew all of what was going on with them that we could prolong. Their ability to live in the community and that. Experiment started what became known as the program for the all inclusive care of the elderly that program has rolled out nationally. California is the highest. Concentration. I think Pennsylvania is now seconds. We operate fifteen. I believe other life programs. In Pennsylvania. There's about 5500 individuals in the commonwealth of Pennsylvania that are part of light program. And certainly as. Are. You're a. So we're we're really fortunate that this is a growing program. It meets the needs you know some of the most dynamic people who just want to be in their homes where we're happy to roll that out for. The future would probably indicate that you're going to need to have even. More spaces available for this scenario. You know that's correct and our current model we've looked at how some of the the programs operate. On the West Coast we would probably need additional locations additional space. We might. You know move to change our models and their running from an eight to five. We may run you know eight to eat or the terrorists. You know additional hours they also run on weekends. And so you know we may have to you know. Change our focus in and work in that direction you do have limited space so we can only have. You know certain number people at our. But you know there are ways to incorporate that in that you know if you bring your. You're participants in the need to be seen today is maybe they didn't do well overnight and they phone called the on call service or anything like that. We see them be triage them you get them the services and and others who might just need be being or something of that need you bring them throughout the day. And then you bring them back home. And expand the hours and expand the services. Of your program. That's Robert McQuillan associate vice president for guys in your care continue them. We also got. Georgia on a typical day what happens here we have a number of participants who come in toward these tenor each day. Many of them receives home care services in the mornings. Whatever personal care systems will go out help them get dressed. Washed up and maybe have breakfast. Picture they get their morning medications. And get them ready to come into the city center following that are. Drivers will show up their house that they are in our employee drivers so they are used to these participants they have they're scheduled routes the participants know them well they'll come they'll get them on to the ban. And bring them into percent terror. When they arrive they'll have coffee had. Read the newspaper chat with their friends. Then as the day goes on bill participate in larger group activities. If they need to be seen in the clinic donors schools check their vital signs. That is they need to see the position they can do that. Perhaps they have an outside appointment with the dentist or podiatrist or cardiologist will transport them to that appointment and that activity center. They'll have a hot meal for lunch. Followed by some additional activities they may. Received a bath or shower at that they centers. That's something that they need and then after the afternoon activities soul. Get back on the band and return to their homes some of our participants will additionally happened care services in the evening to help them. Entertainer. Again medication reminders and help them to that. If for some reason they should need something in the middle of the night we have twenty per hour on call service we have a physician and a nurse on call the times so. They can give us a call if we can we'll troubleshoot whatever issues going on over the phone maybe scandal and for the clinic the next day. Or refer them to. In the emergency department it's necessary. As a response from. Those who attend and also from people who offer care notes can be exhausting what is what is the response that I know our participants just left the program we have an average enrollment of over two years for each of our participants. Most of them are with us until they pass on. We have some participants have been with the program for ten years or more so it's that that's really exciting to me. For the caregivers who are taking care of their loved ones it's a godsend. We provide them with respite services whether that's just. Purchasing coming into the day centers so that they can go to work court. To care their own family's story you know their own medical issues. We also could provide pre for a respite services and nursing home in the purchase depend. You know the family really need to break the purchase and can go for a beat her to work. So the families taking a vacation. And that provides additional. Relief that then they can recharge their batteries and continue to care for their loved ones in their own home. And I know our employees left taking care of the participants they really get great joy out of the elders that we care or in. You know sharing interject generational. Stories and just you know really feeling that they're making differences in the participants lives if people are interest in what they're hearing how to they get a hold of viewer had to do learn more. They can go to the mesa air dot org website and find out more information about life. Also meteor telephone numbers for ours grand location is 5705586160. Or far wilkes-barre location it's 570808. 8896. They can just let them know that there are interested in learning more better program and will be glad to speak with them. That's Georgia corn black liked guys in your operations manager you're listening to special addition on Entercom communications. You're listening to special edition on intercom communications. Hosted by sue Henry. Among the promises made by president Donald Trump during his election run. Was to decrease the tax burden on businesses and individuals. Something that is of great interest to the chairman and editor in chief of Forbes magazine Steve forks. As a presidential candidate in 1996. And 2000. Forbes often a spouse the virtue of a flat tax and a simplified funneling system as well as reforming business lobbies and regulations. Four shall bring his ideas to the campus of Wilkes University on Wednesday march the first. When he delivers the Allen. PM. We had the opportunity for eight preview with Steve for apps it is so wonderful to talk tune in such interesting times that we have and when you come here. You're going to discuss are the concept. Of free enterprise which is seems to many to be encumbered enterprise in this day and age. What you see as trends in the future that may help people to realize their dreams and become entrepreneurs. I think kept. The promise of new trump administration is removing. Some of the key obstacles to getting this economy gone from second gear to full speed ahead and the president started with. Finish moves on removing regulations. That they continue that battle broke remove a major wake on the economy as you know regulations are form of taxation summer necessary but as the president sent 75%. Could probably go and there's still do the job cut taxes are going to be critical at least promise to release. Proposals for major tax cuts for the next few weeks. Especially now that is Treasury Secretary has been confirmed and the key thing none that tax touched there's not too fond of that trap but it slumps sadly some house Republicans. Some Republicans in congress wanted to do that is imposing a 20% to sort of the equivalent of and 20% national sales tax something we bring in now from overseas so well that they've. Put that taxi and the price for a gallon of gasoline will go up 3040 cents a gallon. Destructive fire at Wal-Mart Kmart. Target and other stores will go up and transitional take care about 425 billion dollars out of the pocket so -- working families middle class people Republicans say they need to do look to cut protectionist but in my mind and I hope the president's mind. Whole point of tax cuts is reduced the tax burden not substitute one tax or another so I hope they drop this so that 20% taxed. Just go for straight tax credit they did so. And I think you're releasing this economy come the likes. The American worker where we live Steve says it is hurting in this is part of the reason. Why Donald Trump was so successful in our region because of stagnated wages so limited opportunities. A lot of our people here. Are in the second gear do you see anything on the horizon to put money back. Into the pockets. Of people so that they feel. Comfortable in spending again and they're not paralyzed by fear about buying their refrigerator and automobile or or things like dot. Well election where I think the tax cut will be very helpful. That. President hasn't mines are sharply rationed duct proposed reducing tax rate so that every once specially working people. We'll see an immediate benefits and I hope they make the tax stretch retroactive to January 1 this year so on the tax bill is passed. The next pay check to get you'll see here keeping more of what you work but the nice thing about a properly structured tax cut is not only do you kept they keep immediately. More of what you earned such investments are being made so that you have better job opportunities more opportunities to get to higher pay. In the future so our cutting taxes now and keep more. I mean for the better and better investment creating new facilities new products and services new factories you'll have better opportunities to move ahead. We've done this before we did way back in the 1980 action and that this kind of thing works so that'll help but really boost the economy. Why some may GOP lawmakers seem reticent to accept an idea to let people keep this money then and have less tax burdens for themselves what are they what are they afraid of. I think they're just as part of it I guess as human nature they just don't like big change. Frightened some people and they had a war either official increase the deficit it really won't. And investments are made we know the economy gets better and deferred action aren't comparable for Washington so want that big. Washington supposed to serve the American people. How the other way around so I think they're great great persons like John Kennedy and Ronald Reagan recognized that they proposed a tax proposals. I think get a president trump there's moving in that direction. And if he does it's going to be a great thing and I think Republican shall come around. Instead of trying to find new ways to tax people don't realize is straight forward. That tax cut for everybody. What will be the best thing for America and de Osi more businesses expanding. People feel more confident in the future when people of confidence in the future they're willing to do more things now also becomes a virtuous circle. It you know a lot of people right every day in the media that dared the presidency is a bullet in a China shop a train wreck somebody who doesn't understand it's a but government says etc. etc. center. Ditched did it take you while Steve to come around to Donald Trump then have you had conversations with him about. Some of your financial ideas which are pretty widely known visa B. The flat tax which you've been preaching the gospel of for a over Tony Tony some years. Yes and should talk to. President elect trump before it took the oath of office a few weeks back. And he indicated that he likes the idea of a flat tax is simple tax system where literally could do your catcher turned. I'm single sheet of paper few keystrokes on a computer. And he wants to get this stack strapped on now to get the economy moving. But he indicated he's February idea of doing that much more in the future that was music to my ears. And I think that. But the fact that if there's something she does know about government I think there's a good thing. Watched you for some reason when you stay in Washington for a long time. You're less something happens to your mind I don't know what I see here the water that you start to think Europe better than other people restart to. Well I think that the you know more than other people and you become isolated even though he may go back to your district or state you. Your mind changes here your outlook changes. So while what they called beltway I don't sir whatever. That's why I like term limits put the fact that trump does that a new. It is it is it is a good thing now every administration. Coach what you might call a shakedown cruise. Learning to we know we're aware of the facilities aren't. Getting used to things and getting their new rhythm no way of doing things. Unfortunately. This administration has so disliked by much of the media. That. There through there they can't Sean no honeymoon for him. So it's going to be a rough but I think they're they will love get to. I think I think they'll find their footing so get thirsty lakers and say. Well that'll be good and it but it does give them much less to write about for sure now let's talk about let's work let's talk about Obama care for for a little bit and how that may be gunning up the gears and what's in the future because some people say this may just die a natural death on its own. May not need to be a repealed and replaced so what what's your vision and then and I also know that you are a proponent of something. Called health savings account which I would envision you could do a roll and save the news. In the future and I guess the government doesn't like that does McCain get their mitts on it but how do you how do you see this thing shaken up. Well up. The Obama care yes since falling apart. You buys somebody's bronze plans on the exchanges. And many states many counties there's only one company offering move the plan. But the deductibles are out of this world many of them are 510151000. Dollar short she just totally. Preposterous. Very destructive. So but. Programs even though they are miserably failed never die Ronald Reagan was right when he said the closest from the immortality. As a government program they just go on and so Republicans have no Smart Democrats are gonna have to do what I get rid of this thing and put in place. Again the put and a new system with good safety net so instead of a hodgepodge system we have now. I don't understand why we can't do without care or what we do looks food to put aside health food stamps are administered. Which is not a very rarely done a very good job of it put at least nobody stars in this country I don't know why we can't do something similar in health care. But have more patient controlled health care. Truly where you determine what you and your policy. Up hospitals and clinic should post a crisis so. One place char 2000 dollar Schoen MRI and another when charges 300. Can ask the question what are you offering for the thousand that. I couldn't get for the 300. Up. I haven't hospitals post. And I would do it every month how many patients die room faction received after the third minute to the hospital. So we prevent unnecessary deaths from infections. And a lot of positive sanction. So well I'm. I'm optimistic that would amount especially with the present pushing on that we'll get a system where you get more auction for Norris. People are providing. More health care more affordable squash competition among insurance companies have nationwide shop and I live in New Jersey. Group I wanna buy a policy ultra Pennsylvania it's illegal I can buy a car pennsylvanians. Can chap from Pennsylvania but I can't buying the insurance and pennsylvanians. Which is particularly true one country. So it drops get some more competition there's a lot of positive things that can be done. And now I want to end with what the house say the health savings account that. Be capped year after year in case you needed to extend. She has a little later and that's but but that's why they got to remove any barriers to where whether cheer employ very yourself purple. You put money in your health savings account that belongs to you. Up the employer not the insurance company about the government. Sure you get to keep fit if you change jobs you get to keep that you get to keep the insurance. And you'll also would get much better coverage. Oh properly done much better coverage today right now and so that's something really bad happens steel. Even if you have insurance you're not sure. They're really gonna cover girl or are going to be left for the huge deal. The real five years later or so can fill certain hierarchical affection Warner what was the sport. Let's simplify it make it make it comprehension. So no one likes to pay for routine visitor of telling the truth. But you do want to know that earlier not bad actually get a bad disease or something that say you're not here are going to be destroyed financially it's bad enough physically I don't think that financial worries. Steve Forbes someone wrote an I'm surprised that Steve is going to be allowed to speak at college or university this is a good thing. You rabble browser you. But but but that's what the a well I'm very there's some pleasure that's still believe in the free speech what aircraft we have diversity of opinions and it was straight jacket. That's Steve Forbes who will give the Allen. In the Dorothea Dix and dark Centre at Wilkes University. You are listening to special addition on Entercom communications. You were listening to special edition on intercom communications. Posted by so Henry. Pennsylvania governor Tom wolf spoke to lawmakers in Harrisburg on February 7 about his proposed budget. The 32 point three billion dollar spending plan has about one billion in new taxes mostly aimed at businesses. There's more money for education. Fighting OP lady addiction and a call for a gradual raise in the minimum wage eventually hitting twelve dollars per hour. Here's wolf striking an inclusive tone with lawmakers in Harrisburg when he delivered that address. Our. Commonwealth has been operating for a long time with a structural deficit. That means Harrisburg has been living beyond its means. Households can't do that and neither can we. Paris first pass failure to address that deficit led to devastating cuts in education. We made our senior citizens more vulnerable. And prevented our economy from reaching its full potential. To pennsylvanians. Seem like the budget always brought out the worst in Harrisburg. Politicians always found a way to avoid making tough decisions. Special interests always found a way to avoid giving up their special privileges. And taxpayers always wound up holding the bag. Forced to choose between paying higher taxes. Were settling for worst services. Harris spurs' inability to solve these problems responsibly put our education system our economy. And our families at risk. Pennsylvanians deserve better. And we must continue to deliver for them. This governor I'd push for a different approach one that puts schools and seniors first. Because I believe that if we're going to help Pennsylvania fulfill its potential. We can't go back to forcing a children and their parents to pay the price for Harris urged failure. Nor can we go back to the practices that created this problem in the first place. Nor for that matter can we go back to saddling Pennsylvania families working hard to get by with the bill for mess they didn't make. So I'm offering a budget proposal that represents is responsible solution. To our deficit challenge and a different approach from the way things have been done in Harrisburg. For almost a generation. Will also address the commonwealth senior citizens pennsylvanians make your children a top priority so too are aging parents aunts and uncles and top priority for all of us. When I was running for this office I'd listen to seniors all across our commonwealth. May told me that they very much appreciated how often politicians came to see them. But that they prefer real action on improving senior services. That's why one of the first initiatives I announced as governor was to improve home based and community based care services so that. More seniors could have more options for getting the care they needed without having to move out of their homes. And that's why and and that's why when health insurers threatened to kick 180000. Seniors off their health plans. We stepped in and took those insurance companies to court to make sure that their coverage stayed in place. Just this past year we distributed more than two million dollars in lottery proceeds to 43. Senior community centers across our commonwealth. And we made it easier for struggling seniors to get assistance purchasing nutritious food. There's more to be done. Next January another new program called community health choices will come on line to help more seniors receive the care they need. Within their community instead of facilities. But innovations like these are only possible if we continue to move past the budget battles that have paralyzed Harrisburg for far too long and take a different approach. Governor wolf came to the Charles T Adams senior center in Wilkes-Barre this week. He assured older pennsylvanians that services for them will be enhanced. You wanted to. See who would also talk to. Try to do. This or. With a hit like a list. I let me just say witness if you watched that puts. You need to deal. It. Really. With. When it was right what to do we which age. You were service. And you win. It in ways actually worth what we increasing. Being forced to increase in education and Kris and her you Buick. How we do there's no better example than what I do. Here. But I would I would. Your choice program stay here yeah. And that would be my. So will we do it won't make sure. What to do what we can do. Get the agency's Harrisburg that are working to make it and actually bring about. Some issues. Want. To allow you to liberalize. U wanna. Hurt. But he does. Rules regulations it's. Use this you or this which. Yeah. We wanna do and where. Our church is actually try to do what I. It's like yours should go and do what you want. Yeah yeah yeah. It's. Canceling. Any. Taking and hey let's actually. Let's see we dictate where we are. Which just. And again will do with seniors. Something that is your legacy better. New approach to state. And we do. Your research to really and take yeah it's. The same thing you want to do. Yeah. It's. It's that it institutional. Put it to use to make your lives better implement rule review but he. And there are actually lights. Were a were yeah there are where we. Well student that we are going and were ordered. Were. To lose your yeah. And yet she moved here. In the past it's. Teresa Osborne a black on a county who serves as secretary of aging. Also spoke about the importance of senior senators to older residents. At this noon. Our across our sixties counties are commonwealth. And over 500 senior centers thousands of pets are gathering just like you arc today. To each other's company. Order to ensure that we can continue those goods services we need to which it. We have spaces such as that is folks can't gather to engage in health and wellness programs. Skills exceed tax system preparation steps opportunities. To. It's it is services supports her to you. Including navigating the complex Medicare programs through the price programs make it helps decisions helped choices every day coming here to seniors and it's an opportunity to be engaged to each participate in volunteer efforts and help make your communities stronger in by armies and Julie nutritious meal. And I am ever so it's it's it's that that we all stand between you. In that but accessing local senior community centers continues to youthful of this administration. As seniors and it crops content Serbs 888. It's vital services that help them. Stay healthy. And as the governor just mentioned just last week you we all hurt I was one person did this and our governor. I am in the and that their club. Expects it. But as we heard the governor last week share to all tennis needs each one. Twelve point nine its work that's being oh he made us aware of this proposed budget for the upcoming fiscal year. And seek justice and for that proposal governor wolf outlined in articulate it quite well kiss continued to commit. A commitment that he and I share in Reno you share with and it. Every older Pennsylvania who point nine. Nine million of those folks age sixty Overton are common in their families were true the blueprint that the governor outlined are. Work ethic it's been a department Beijing to be that visible and effective advocate for pennsylvanians will continue. It will continue in school it incredibly new ways for the court aging service programs that we provide. Under the older Americans act will continue. Along with other incredible initiatives that have begun. Over the course of the past two years initiatives with others state agencies to ensure it. It's being regardless of age or stage of life king H in place with the dignity and expect the answer each which it. That those services are available and are accessible. East course services it includes communities actors they also include picture those other initiatives that the governor has started. And of course these past two years. Or indeed successful initiatives such as the blueprint for hunger for EPA which demonstrates the administration's commitment. To help older pennsylvanians eat better stay healthy. Each added attention to the it was provided and seniors enters settings cute. The one that you will all enjoy a few moments access programs such snap. The supplement nutrition assistance program called stamps. Duties are an all time favorite farmer's market nutrition program those programs and rich diet super seniors. Providing access to each rich meals. That they might. Please be lacking access to such critical programs are evident. This governors I desire to which every decision we make is in bed. Is it and the reality Pennsylvania seniors expect it deserves to seek real action steps are taken. To which pap axis to its healthcare carvers. To which I have a safe place together meaning gauged in the they're into which they have opportunity to age in place with the respect and dignity that they deserve. Tree. Types use. An exploitation. Nothing short. Taking these actions steps are necessary to this success in his ex. That's Teresa Osborne Pennsylvania's secretary for the bureau of the aging you're listening to special addition. On Entercom communications. And. Thanks for listening to special edition. A weekly look at these issues in the news and the personalities shaping historians.