Q: I have just returned to the Thousand Oaks area and am trying to get caught up on activities that take place in the community. Does Senior Concerns still have its Ultimate Dining Experience fundraiser?
A: Yes. The Ultimate Dining Experience is a major fundraiser that enables the nonprofit Senior Concerns to provide vital services and programs to seniors and their caregivers in Ventura County and western Los Angeles County cities.
The event is scheduled for Sept. 9 at the Hyatt Westlake Plaza. The doors will open at 5 p.m. to chefs’ samplings and wine tasting in the garden area, live music and a silent auction. Attendees will go to the ballroom at 7 p.m. for a three-course dinner featuring chefs’ cuisine from eight local eating establishments. Program festivities and a live auction will follow dinner.
Go to https://www.seniorconcerns.org or call 497-0189 for more information or to make reservations.
Q: A neighbor recently returned home from the hospital and needed assistance. I was told she had to pay for these services. Doesn’t Medicare pay for in-home care?
A: In-home care is a complex subject, and you are not alone in your thinking. Medicare pays only for “medically necessary” services and does not pay for “custodial” care.
Custodial care essentially covers assistance with meeting activities of daily living. It includes help with walking, getting into and out of bed, bathing, dressing, eating and going to the toilet.
It could include preparation of special diets and supervision of taking self-administered medication. It does not require the services of trained medical or paramedical personnel.
Home health care is skilled nursing care and certain other services received in the home for treatment of an illness or injury. Medicare covers this type of care in the home if the patient meets strict eligibility requirements.
To qualify for home health care, the patient must have a doctor order and present a plan for such care. The plan must show that either intermittent — not full-time — skilled nursing care or physical, speech or occupational therapy is required.
The patient must be homebound. This means the patient normally cannot leave home and that leaving home is a major effort. A patient who leaves home must do so rarely and only for a short period.
Last, the home health agency caring for the patient must be approved by the Medicare program.
Home health care can be covered under Medicare Part A or Part B. There are no deductibles or coinsurance associated with home health care except for durable medical equipment, in which case Medicare will pay 80 percent and the patient or other insurance will pay 20 percent.
Friday: “What Is the Difference Between a Medicare Supplemental Plan and a Medicare Advantage Plan?” seminar. 1-3 p.m., Ventura County Area Agency on Aging Offices, 646 County Square Drive in Ventura. Call 477-7310 for information.
Aug. 21: “What Is the Difference Between a Medicare Supplemental Plan and a Medicare Advantage Plan?” seminar. 10-11:30 a.m., Camarillo Health Care District, 3639 E. Las Posas Road, Suite 117 in Camarillo. Call 388-1952 for information