Email editor@interior-news.com

Letter: Ponoka resident questions funding changes for seniors

Dear editor,

Being a senior on a fixed income of about $24,000, I have learned to budget. If an item is needed, I investigate pricing hoping to avoid interest.

The Alberta Seniors Benefit program is being helpful. Since my hip replacement, I need foot care. Provincial benefits did pay the full charge. Now they pay only $26 of the usual cost of $40.

In the first year, the government paid the full cost of doctor-prescribed Life Line. Now, due to government cuts, they pay one half.

I needed an ambulance and hospital care for kidney failure. The province paid. Post hospital, I needed several trips to the Edmonton Kidney Clinic. Thankfully, Ponoka handi-van took me for several trips, waited and returned me. AADL paid 12 cents per land unit of distance of the hundred of dollars it cost.

What is better? Pay the full cost of the hospital and ambulance care needed for serious illness or pay the lesser full cost of needed care before the cost of an ambulance is necessary?

Should the Alberta government first consider our real needs instead of the high cost wasted on highly positioned people?

Jena Zelasek,

Ponoka

Information provided by the office of Lacombe-Ponoka MLA Ron Orr:

As a supplement to Government of Canada programs, seniors in Alberta have access to a range of Government of Alberta supports that includes both financial assistance and health benefits. For example, the Alberta Seniors Benefit program assists with monthly living expenses. Assistance with health and personal supports is available through the Special Needs Assistance for Seniors program and the Dental and Optical Assistance for Seniors programs.

Special Needs Assistance for Seniors provides eligible low-income seniors with assistance toward the cost of essential health items, such as diabetic supplies and mileage for long‑distance trips to see a medical specialist. The program also funds podiatry expenses up to $26 per month for eligible seniors. The assistance funded by the Special Needs Assistance for Seniors program toward the cost of essential health items amounts has not been reduced. Although benefit maximums and frequency limitations do exist.

With respect to personal response (lifeline) services, the Government of Alberta provides up to $20 per month toward monthly monitoring fees. In July 2020 the amount covered for monthly monitoring charges changed from $31 to $20. Changes in the amount funded for this expense are due to the emergence of products that have come down in costs and are now more readily available.

For more details on the expenses currently considered by the Special Needs Assistance for Seniors program, visit www.alberta.ca/seniors-financial-assistance.aspx.

Letters to the editor

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Katherine Swampy
Maskwacis chiefs are opposed to RAPID Response

Alberta Treaty 6 First Nations say they were not properly consulted

UCP Lacombe-Ponoka MLA Ron Orr spoke to the Ponoka Chamber about the potential a new provincial government would provide to help support small business.
File photo
MLA Ron Orr: ‘Our constituents … want us to defend their livelihoods and freedoms’

Lacombe-Ponoka MLA stands with 15 other UCP members calling out retreat on restrictions

Conservative leader Erin O’Toole holds a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, April 6, 2020. Top Tory leaders of past and present will speak with supporters today about what a conservative economic recovery from COVID-19 could look like. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
O’Toole to vote against Conservative MP’s private bill on ‘sex-selective abortion’

Erin O’Toole said he supports a woman’s right to choose and will personally vote against the private member’s bill

(Government of Canada)
Liberal MP caught stark naked during House of Commons video conference

William Amos, in Quebec, appeared on the screens of his fellow members of Parliament completely naked

Health Canada headquarters in Ottawa. (Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press)
Health Canada releases guidelines for reducing COVID-19 transmission at home

Improve indoor air quality by opening up your windows and doors, among the encouraged ventilation measures

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney updates media on measures taken to help with COVID-19, in Edmonton on Friday, March 20, 2020. Alberta is set to join three other provinces in exploring the feasibility of small modular reactors as a clean energy option. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Four provinces to sign memorandum of understanding to explore small nuclear reactors

Alberta government said in August that it would enter into the agreement to help diversify its energy sector

Sharis Carr, a nurse at the Aaron E. Henry Community Health Service Center in Clarksdale, Miss., holds a box containing doses of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine Wednesday, April 7, 2021. The U.S. is recommending a “pause” in using the single-dose Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine to investigate reports of potentially dangerous blood clots. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)
EXPLAINER: What’s known about COVID vaccines and rare clots

These are not typical blood clots – they’re weird in two ways

File photo
City of Wetaskiwin awarded $5.1 million grant for additional RCMP officers

10 Additional RCMP officers to serve the City of Wetaskiwin as a result of the grant.

Titanic was the largest and most luxurious ship in the world. Photo provided and colourized by Jiri Ferdinand.
QUIZ: How much do you know about the world’s most famous shipwreck?

Titanic sank 109 years ago today, after hitting an iceberg

A health-care worker holds up a vial of the AstraZeneca Covishield vaccine at a COVID-19 vaccination clinic in Montreal, Thursday, March 18, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
PHAC receives first report of blood clot linked to AstraZeneca

The federal agency says the person is now recovering at home

A real estate sign is pictured in Vancouver, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS Jonathan Hayward
1 in 3 young Canadians have given up on owning a home: poll

Data released Monday says 36% of adults younger than 40 have given up on home ownership entirely

Most Read