Wednesday, October 2, 2019

oct 2 2019
on to the next 82 years--
i did walk on my stilts yesterday and wanted to get a picture of janine and i on them but by the time she got heree i was in bed.. so we might try today-
apparently megan has a video to prove my birthday walk....
 kind of typically for an age thing........ getting up on them was a bit frightening.. but once up there, i was quite comfortable-- and walking on them was no worse than walking without them≥
maybe some people dream of sandy beaches, last night i dreamed i had an antique john deere tractor stuck in my basement-- which tells you teh condition of my basement... well at least berfore  whirlwwind judy cleaned it out.
teh big annnouncement i promised on october2nd-- was  medicare has recognized service dogs- thanks to staci and merle... it is a start-- a breakthru-- they are not willing to pay for the service dog-- but some upkeep--  a start is a big one. !
'Upon qualification, this Medicare Advantage Plan will cover up to $500 annually to help pay for items, such as food, bedding, leashes and vests, etc. 
i will  cut and paste her complete explaination
i certainly had a bunch of birthday wishes- for which i am thankful--
i also have made a  new /old --- edict -- we tried to get the pups to the v pen yesterday and they were wild... literally...   we need a bit more constructive learning time in the kitchen to get them focused.
  i am afraid all teh september things--- from dog fest to adi to kennel cough-- they are wofully behind in thier spoon training.
 we need more megan/devin in teh kitchen for a  10 minute session  couple times a day  to get the focus.
also i think more time could be spent in teh arena to get the pups more ready for teh advanced training-- so there might be more camera tiem there too.
those pups were wild....  happy-- thrilled to be loose-- but wild-- like they never knew what a can of food -- or a spoon was !!
 gotta work on that more--- starting today
Hi Mrs. White, 

I wanted to reach out and wish you a happy birthday. I also wanted to let you know the impact that Eeyore has had on my life. I work 3 jobs and it's really hard financially right now for me however he is the best thing in my life. He makes me so happy. I have never had a dog that was my dog. I didn't understand the mental health impact that Eeyore could have. I truly believe he keeps me going and keeps my spirits up. I know that might sound crazy but he is like my kid. We have the best time, Today I was talking to him about how you can't buy good taste, because he just wants to say hi to everyone on our walks but some people think he's to big and he doesn't understand why they don't want to say hi him! 
I have to tell him that those people have no taste and reassure him that he is the best dog in the world. Which is is. 

I will be back on the farm this winter/ sprint to help out with the shoveling and laundry. I am sorry I have not been around this fall, I am swamped. 

With love, 

Brooke Stewart and The Big E
Hi Carlene 

First- I hope you had a wonderful birthday !
Second - as it is October first I can give you more information on what we talked about recently, but first same background information on Medicare in case you needed clarification on options.  

Original Medicare includes Medicare Parts A and B. 
Medicare Part A covers hospital costs. 
Medicare Part B covers doctors' fees and outpatient services and has a monthly premium.  
Since Original Medicare has costs likes deductibles and coinsurance, there are plans that help cover those charges that can be purchased called Medigap policies. Medigap plans have requirements on when you can purchase them. Additionally to get coverage for prescription drugs, one would have to purchase a Medicare Part D plan (administered by a private health insurance company). 

There is another option that one-third of the current 60 million Medicare beneficiaries choose, in which they forgo original Medicare and the Medigap options and instead elect a private Medicare Advantage plan, also known as Medicare C. Medicare Beneficiaries can only enroll in this type of plan at certain times of the year, like the Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) which starts on 10/15/2019 for plans starting in 2020.  
For those that select a private Medicare Advantage plan they get all the benefits covered under original Medicare, most have a Part D Prescription Drug benefit and cover additional supplemental benefits that are not otherwise covered These supplemental benefits are only available through these types of plans. 
Over the years the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has allowed these Private Medicare Advantage Plans to offer different types of otherwise non-covered Medicare benefits like routine eyeglasses, hearing aids and dental care. Most recently they have allowed even more benefits like personal home helpers, over the counter medications and acupuncture.  2020 will allow even more of these benefits and one that Merle and I are honored to be part of....

The Service Dog Support Benefit is a new Benefit that is being offered by one of those Private Medicare Advantage Plans in 2020.   This benefit is designed for the Medicare Beneficiary who selects this particular plan and has a Service Dog (as per the ADA definition) for a chronic illness. Upon qualification, this Medicare Advantage Plan will cover up to $500 annually to help pay for items, such as food, bedding, leashes and vests, etc.  
As these Private Medicare Advantage Plans are offered by different companies not all will have the same benefits or this particular benefit.  It depends on where you live and if you select that plan.   

There are many articles on the internet about each type of plan. has information as well which includes a plan finder to help one find the right plan for them.  Additionally Medicare Beneficiaries should contact a licensed sales agents that can help them pick the right plan.  

This is the first time Medicare has allowed a benefit for Service Dogs and while it will not cover the dog, training or Vet bills it is a start in the right direction and following the coverage the VA has.  

Thank you for all you do for SDP recipients.
Staci & Merle
it is a break thru-- thanks to merle????