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Gearing Up for Pneumonia and Flu season

 

While many of us may still be enjoying the summer weather and vacations spent with family, it is never too early to start preparing for flu and pneumonia season. You can start by planning your doctor’s visit now. Especially during this time when so many medical offices are still trying to handle the influx in patient visits due to COVID-19, making an appointment now will help you to avoid long wait times come fall.

It’s also worth looking into what’s new in prevention to help get you through the year in good health. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) offer several helpful resources that provide thorough overviews of the latest prevention services covered by Medicare. You can find an interactive chart broken out by key services here or a helpful guide to utilizing your Medicare benefits here. You may be surprised at all of the services that are covered including screenings, counseling, wellness visits and of course vaccinations.

Many experts are predicting the 2021/2022 flu and pneumonia season to be more active due to easing of COVID-19 restrictions across the country. Additionally, researchers are still working to understand the long-term impacts of COVID-19 on lung health and this potential impact could contribute to an increase in hospitalizations due to pneumonia.

Fortunately, the FDA recently approved two new and more effective vaccines for pneumonia. This is a promising development to help ensure we have the most effective tools we need to protect ourselves during this potentially dangerous flu and pneumonia season.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). ACIP makes recommendations for the use of the vaccines and then the CDC uses that guidance to set the U.S. adult and childhood immunization schedules based on those recommendations. That process is going on now and RetireSafe has been engaged is advocating for swift action by CDC so that these important new vaccines can be available to seniors as soon as possible.

I urge you to start planning ahead for your doctor’s visits and consider asking your doctor about when you’ll have access to the latest pneumonia vaccines. With so much attention being paid to the approval of COVID-19 vaccines, and rightly so, we must be diligent in reminding the medical community of our need to protect ourselves against one of the leading causes of death in this country – pneumonia!

We may be called upon to help ourselves and our friends and neighbors to make sure CDC knows how much we need and want access to vaccines that can protect us in the dangerous flu and pneumonia season.  Thank you for turning to RetireSafe for reliable up-to-date health policy information. It is our duty and our privilege to do this work!

 

Sincerely,

Hello America's Seniors,

As you age, there is greater chance of receiving a serious medical diagnosis. This can sometimes be cancer. Thanks to an educational grant from Bristol-Myers Squibb, RetireSafe is launching a webinar series partnered with the National Grange that guides you and your family through that diagnosis. The series is split into six sessions. While we hope you and your families never have to experience this life altering diagnoses, we hope this information can make the process easier for those who may face serious medical diagnoses. On July 12th the series will be posted here on our website. Check it out!

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