The Medicare Annual Enrollment Period is underway! While most seniors focus on their physical well-being, it is important they keep in mind other critical aspects of their health including staying socially connected. The Head of Aetna Medicare, Christopher Ciano is here with more on this topic.
Why is it so important for seniors to stay connected with their communities and those around them? Christopher explains that social isolation becomes more and more prevalent as seniors age. According to a CVS Health Study, 1 in 5 seniors reported a lack of desire to be social. They feel it is hard to make new friends, and many times friends and family don’t live nearby. This demonstrates why it is critical to stay connected.
Christopher goes on to say that literature has shown how loneliness has the same impact on mortality as smoking a pack of cigarettes a day. There are ways to stay connected and engaged even when seniors cannot physically do exactly what they used to enjoy. For example, Christopher’s father has taken up Wii Bowling at the community center to replace regular bowling.
How can Medicare Advantage Plans help seniors avoid feeling socially isolated? Medicare Advantage Plans offer a variety of programs and services that can ensure that seniors stay involved and engaged in their local communities. At Aetna, they have a program called Resources for Living. This focuses on isolation and loneliness, and other social challenges. There are also Resource for Living Counselors that work with individual Aetna members to address any needs they have. Aetna has a Silver Sneakers exercise program, too, to help their members stay active and engaged.
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