Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, May 7, 2022

MVNews this week:  Page 12

Mountain Views-News Saturday, May 7, 2022 


Dear Savvy Senior:
What exactly does Medicare cover when it comes to Alzheimer’s disease? My husband was recently diagnosed 
with early-stage Alzheimer’s, and we would like to find out what’s covered and what isn’t.
Planning Ahead 

Dear Planning: 

I’m very sorry to hear about your husband’s diagnosis, 
but you’ll be happy to know that most medical costs to 
treat beneficiaries with Alzheimer’s disease are covered 
by Medicare. Unfortunately, long-term custodial care 
costs that most patients eventually need are not. Here’s 
a breakdown of what Medicare does and doesn’t cover 
when it comes to Alzheimer’s disease, along with some 
tips that can help you plan ahead. 

Medical care: For the most part, ongoing medical care to diagnose and treat Alzheimer’s disease is covered 
by Medicare Part B, including visits to primary care doctors and specialists, lab tests, speech and occupational 
therapy, home health care and outpatient counseling services. Medicare pays 80 percent of these costs, and 
you will be responsible for the remaining 20 percent after you’ve met your annual $233 Part B deductible. 

Sixty days of inpatient hospital care is also covered under Medicare Part A after you pay a $1,556 deductible. 
Beyond 60 days, a daily coinsurance fee is added. 

Medications: Most Alzheimer’s medications are covered under Medicare’s Part D prescription drug plans, 
but coverage varies so check his plan’s formulary. The only exception is Aduhelm, the controversial new 
drug that is estimated to cost $28,200 per year. Medicare Part B will only cover this drug if your husband is 
enrolled in a clinical trial. 

Long-term custodial care: It’s important to understand that original Medicare does not cover long-term 
custodial care. This includes nursing home care, the costs of assisted living facilities and adult day care. 
Medicare does, however, pay for some shorter-term nursing home care, but only up to 100 days following a 
three-day inpatient hospital stay. 

Hiring home help for bathing, toileting and dressing (this is known as custodial care) is not covered by Medicare 
either unless your husband is also receiving skilled-nursing care or physical or occupational therapy. 

To help with these costs, you may want to look into getting a long-term care insurance policy or short-term 
care plan (see if possible, or if your income and assets are very limited, you may qualify for 
Medicaid. To investigate your financial options for long-term care, go to 

Hospice: In the final stages of the disease, Medicare Part A covers nearly all aspects of hospice care, including 
doctor services, nursing care, drugs, medical equipment and supplies, physical and occupational therapy, 
homemaker services, counseling and respite care. To qualify, a doctor must certify that a patient has six 
months or less to live. 

Other Insurance and Assistance 
If your husband is enrolled in original Medicare and he doesn’t have a supplemental insurance (Medigap) 
policy, you should consider getting him one. A Medigap plan will help pay for things that aren’t covered by 
Medicare like copayments, coinsurance and deductibles. To search for plans in your area, go to Medicare.
gov/plan-compare and click on “Medigap policy only.” 

Or, if you’re enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan (like an HMO or PPO), his plan must provide him at 
least the same coverage as original Medicare does. Some advantage plans may also offer additional coverage 
for home care services. 

If you can’t afford your Medicare out-of-pocket costs or need help with medication expenses, there are 
Medicare Savings Programs and the Extra Help program that provide financial assistance for medications. 
To learn more, see 

You can also get help through your State Health Insurance Assistance Program (see or call 877839-
2675), which provides free Medicare and long-term care counseling. 

Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or visit Jim Miller is a 
contributor to the NBC Today show and author of “The Savvy Senior” book. 


 By Marc Garlett 


Whether it’s to qualify for Medicaid, avoid probate, or reduce your tax burden, 

transferring ownership of your home to your adult child during your lifetime 

may seem like a smart move. But in nearly all cases, it’s a huge mistake with dire 
consequences for everyone involved. 

Before you sign over the title to your home, consider the following potential risks. 

1. Your Eligibility for Medi-Cal Could Be JeopardizedWith the cost of long-term care skyrocketing, you may be worried about your (or your senior parents’) ability 
to pay for extremely expensive stays in an assisted-living facility or a nursing home. Since neither traditional 
health insurance nor Medicare will pay for long-term care, you may look to Medi-Cal to help cover 
the costs but to become eligible for Medi-Cal, you must first exhaust nearly every penny of your savings. 
So, you may think by transferring your house to your children, you can avoid selling the home if you need to 
qualify for Medi-Cal, and this strategy may seem easier and less expensive than passing on your home (and 
other assets) through estate planning. However, this tactic is a big mistake on several levels. It can not only 
delay—or even disqualify—your Medi-Cal eligibility, but it can also lead to other serious problems. Here’s 
why: In February 2006, Congress passed the Deficit Reduction Act, which included several provisions aimed 
at reducing Medicaid abuse. 

One of these provisions was a five-year “look-back” period for eligibility. This means that before you can 
qualify for Medi-Cal, your finances will be reviewed for any “uncompensated transfers” of your assets within 
the five years preceding your application. So, if you transfer your house to your children and then need 
long-term care within five years, it could significantly delay your qualification for Medi-Cal benefits—and 
possibly even prevent you from ever qualifying. 

2. Your Child Could Be Stuck with A Massive Tax Bill 
Another drawback to transferring ownership of your home in this way is the potential tax liability for your 
child. By transferring the property before you die, you may think you can save your child both time and 
money by avoiding the long and expensive probate process. But you could be sticking them with an even 
higher tax bill. 
That’s because if you transfer your home to your child during your lifetime, he or she will have to pay capital 
gains tax on the difference between your home’s value when you purchased it and the home’s selling price at 
the time it’s sold by your child. Depending on your home’s value, that tax bill can be enormous. 

In contrast, by transferring your home via your estate plan, your child will receive what’s known as a “stepup 
in basis.” This tax savings is one of the only benefits of death, and it allows your child to pay capital gains 
taxes based only on the difference between the value of the home at the time of inheritance and its sales 
price, rather than paying taxes based on the home’s value at the time you bought it. 

3. Your Home Could Be Vulnerable to Debt, Divorce, Disability, & DeathThere are several other reasons why transferring ownership of your home to your child now is a bad idea. If 
your child takes ownership of your home and has significant debt, for example, his or her creditors can make 
claims against the property to recoup what they’re owed, potentially forcing your child to sell the home to 
pay those debts. 
Divorce is another thorny issue. If your child goes through a divorce while the house is in his or her name, 
the home may be considered marital property. Depending on the outcome of the divorce, the settlement 
decree may force your child to sell the home or pay his or her ex-spouse a share of the home's value. 

The disability or death of your child can also lead to trouble. If your child becomes disabled and seeks Medi-
Cal or other government benefits, having the home in his or her name could block eligibility, just like it 
would your own. And if your child dies before you and owns the house, the property could be passed on in 
such a way that would leave you homeless. 

There’s Simply No Substitute for Proper Estate PlanningGiven these potential risks, transferring ownership of your home to your adult child now as a “poor-man’s 
estate plan” is almost never a good idea. Instead, you should consult with a trusted estate planning attorney 
to find alternative solutions. There are much better ways to qualify for Medicaid, save on taxes, and keep 
your family out of court in the event of your death or incapacity. 

Marc Garlett, Esq.

Cali Law Family Legacy Matters 




Beth Copti, Marilyn Diaz, Anne Schryver, Jo Ann Williams, Paul Hagan, Lenore 
Crilly Joann Serrato-Chi, Harriett Lyle, Jean Coleman, Birgitta Gerlinger, Donna 
Mathieson, Luciana Rosenzweig, Linda Wochnik, Marian Woodford, Debbie 
Sheridan, Joanne Anthony, Carole Axline, Kika Downey, Shirley Hall, Annie 
Scalzo, Janet Ten Eyck, Jane Thomas, Ray Burley* To add your name to this 
distinguished list, please call the paper at 626.355.2737. YEAR of birth not required 

SIERRA MADRE SENIOR CLUB Every Saturday from 11:30am-3:30 pm in the 
Hart Park House Senior Center. Join us as we celebrate birthdays, holidays and pay 
BINGO. Must be 50+ to join. For more information call Mark at 626-355-3951. 

DOMINOES TRAIN GAME Wednesday, 4/6 & 4/20 11:00 am— 12:30 pm Hart 
Park House The object of the game is for a player to play all the tiles from their hand 
onto one or more trains, emanating from a central hub or “station”. Call Lawren with 
questions that you may have. 


Tuesday, 4/12 & 4/26,, 10:30 am—Hart Park House If you enjoy painting, sketching, 
water color, or making some other form of artistic creation please join our new 
program, PAINT PALS!!! Bring a project that you are working on to the HPH and 
enjoy some quality art time with other artists looking to paint with a new pal. 

TEA AND TALK SENIOR BOOK CLUB Tuesday, 4/6 & 4/20— 9:00 am Staff has 
launched a new book club series, Tea and Talk, which meets twice a month to discuss 
the fun, suspense, intrigue, love and so much more that each selection will have in 

FIBER FRIENDS Tuesday, 4/5 & 4/19 —10:00 am If you enjoy knitting, crocheting, 
embroidery, needlepoint, bunka, huck, tatting or cross stitch then we have a 
group for you! Bring your current project, a nonalcoholic beverage, then sit and chat 
with likeminded fiber friends. We meet in the Hart Park House 

BINGO Tuesday 4/12 and 4/16 1:00 pm- 2:00 pm Come on down to enjoy this 
time with friends. We are trying a new spin on BINGO fun so please bring your good 
luck charms and BINGO markers! 

Brunner is available for income tax consultation. Please call 626-355-5278 x 704 

CHAIR YOGA Every Monday and Wednesday, 10-10:45 am Please join us for some 
gentle stretching, yoga, balance exercise and overall relaxation with Paul. Classes are 
ongoing and held in the Memorial Park Covered Pavilion or the Hart Park House.. 

HULA AND POLYNESIAN DANCE Every Friday, 10-10:45 am Bring a lei, your 
flower skirt or just your desire to dance! Hula in the Park is back and waiting for you 
to join in on all the fun! Memorial Park Pavilion. 


Don Hewes and Nadine Hale are a dancing team, but she decides to start a career on her own. 
So he takes the next dancer he meets, Hannah Brown, as a new partner. After a while, this new 
team is so successful that Florenz Ziegfeld is interested in them, but due to the fact that Nadine 
Hale also dances (and stars) in the Ziegfeld Follies, Don says no. Despite the fact that he is in 
love with Hannah, he keeps the relation with her strictly business. So Hannah is of the opinion 
that he is still in love with Nadine, and her suspicion grows when he dances with Nadine in a 
Night Club Floor Show. 


A Weekly Religion Column by Rev. James Snyder 


In getting older, I have discovered, I pay a little more attention to my 

dietary habits. Or, maybe I should say, The Gracious Mistress of the 

Parsonage pays more attention to my dietary habits.
As we get older, she is more obsessed with vegetables than anything else. But, for the 
life of me, I cannot figure out exactly why. 

With a close handle on my diet, she leads the way in what she refers to as "A healthy 
diet."Being married as long as I have, I have learned to go along with the program 
from the kitchen. I like what someone once said, "Do you want to be right or happy?" 
Obviously, you can't be both; you have to choose one or the other.

As obsessed as The Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage is with vegetables, particularly 
green vegetables, she has the opposite view when it comes to cookies. Cookies 
are not necessarily a "no-no," but they are under her strict supervision. Several times 
a week, she will give me a cookie. As she gives it to me, she will say, "One is enough."
I usually respond by saying, "One more is never enough." 

 I laugh while she just stares at me. I must say I have never eaten a cookie I did not 
like. I am especially partial to Girl Scout cookies. I usually tell my wife that buying 
a Girl Scout cookie goes for a very good cause. I don't tell her, but I'm not thinking 
about the Girl Scouts. If the Girl Scouts are selling cookies, those cookies must be 
good for you. After all, they wouldn't sell anything bad for you, would they? My wife 
never has an answer to that question. 

Things turned around just last week. 

I was taking some things to the trashcan, and as I put in something, I noticed a receipt 
from the grocery store. I'm always interested to see how much she's spending and 
how much she's saving. So I pulled out the receipt and found that she had spent $45, 
but she saved $48. I'm not quite sure how she does that or how that works, but I leave 
that responsibility to her.

• I was about to throw it back into the trashcan when I noticed something on 
the receipt. There were boxes of cookies on her receipt that she had purchased that 
day. I think it was something like six boxes. So, as I was thinking, those cookies must 
be somewhere in the house. That receipt was dated several days ago, and so was a 
recent purchase. Where are those cookies? 
The kitchen area is my wife's responsibility, and she has it very well organized. I can't 
find anything, but she can always. I was beginning to think that there were boxes of 
cookies somewhere in this kitchen area. If I could find just one box of cookies, I could 
eat one or two or three behind her back and her not knowing it. She was away for 
the afternoon, and so I spent the time looking all through the kitchen for where she 
might hide those cookies. If I did not know there were cookies there, I would not even 
begin to look. But my curiosity, not to mention my appetite, got the best of me, and I 
wanted to find them.

 For the first hour and ½, I searched everywhere and could not come up with one 
box of cookies. I knew they had to be somewhere right in front of me, but I couldn't 
find them for the life of me. Then it occurred to me. I'm a little over 1 foot taller than 
my wife. That got me thinking that perhaps those cookies are closer to the floor than 
I was looking. So I got on my hands and knees and opened up one of the doors at the 
bottom of the cabinet. I searched through that and then went to the next and then to 
the next.

 Then, much to my dietary delight, I found a stack of cookie boxes way in the back 
of that lower door. There they were, in all of their beauty. I carefully pulled one out, 
opened it, extracted three, and then decided to make it four cookies. They look so 
delicious, especially in my hand. So I carefully closed up the box and put it way in the 
back so she wouldn’t see it right away.

 I enjoyed eating those cookies that afternoon, the next afternoon, and the next afternoon. 
Before I knew it, I had eaten two boxes of Girl Scout cookies. And I got away 
with it. What a dietary victory.

 When I came back from a project I was working on, standing in the kitchen and 
looking at me with both hands on her hips, she said, "Do you know anything about 
the missing cook-ies in the cabinet?" "No," I said, "but I'll help you look for them."
"No, you will not, but you will stay clear of all of those cookies." Then I shared one 
of my favorite verses of Scripture with her. “Give, and it shall be given unto you; good 
measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into 
your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to 
you again” (Luke 6:38).

 Having a giving attitude is one of the most important aspects of the Christian life. 

Mountain Views News 80 W Sierra Madre Blvd. No. 327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.609.3285 
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