Any help for seniors?

Regarding The Herald’s Sept. 15 article about the premium increases for Group Health and Pacificare HMOs (“Medicare HMO costs on the rise: State’s seniors lose out with federal formula”):

I am a life-long resident and voter of the state of Washington. I am 66 years of age, widowed and in good health. I retired from Providence Hospital when I turned 65 but continue to work as needed on-call. I am very fortunate to have a part-time job that allows me to earn extra money (and pay taxes) to supplement my income. What about the other 17,999 older citizens affected by the increases noted in the article?

I started planning for retirement about 20 years ago by saving and investing whatever I could in IRAs and the employer tax-deferred plan. I live in a 30-year-old mobile home, drive a 1978 Chevrolet and did without a lot of extras so I could enjoy retirement. What a job!

I see a doctor once or twice a year and now, as a result of the premium increase, I will pay $1,008 per year on top of the Medicare part B premium of $546 per year for that privilege!

A recent prescription for antibiotics for an infection would have amounted to $118.43! I didn’t fill it.

Is there any relief in sight for seniors in the state of Washington or are the political TV ads just expensive gobbledygook to get votes? I really want to know. In the meantime, I’ll keep working.


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