CJ Page is executive director of the Community Health Action Network. He spoke with Seniors Speak Out’s Nona Bear about issues seniors are facing in his area. Below is an abridged version of the interview.
Nona Bear (NB): What community do you serve and how long have you been an advocate?
CJ Page (CP): The Community Health Action Network has been around since 2007, serving the community as a resource and a strong advocate for health and education. We work on health and minority issues, as well as serve seniors.
NB: What are some of your priorities around the Part D program?
CP: As health advocates, it’s important that we think about the needs of seniors and ensure they have the information needed about the programs they use, such as what changes are being made. I see a great deal of work that has been done, but I also see the need for education on health issues for all age groups.
NB: Are there other concerns regarding Part D or Medicare in your community?
CP: Many of the people I work with want to stick with the coverage they have under Part D, and if any changes take place, it is a concern. If we hear of coming changes, that inspires people to take action, like signing petitions to keep things the way they are.
NB: What would you recommend seniors discuss with their doctors and pharmacists in relation to their medicine and Part D coverage?
CP: People need to ask a lot of questions to understand the medication they are taking and what happens to their body. They should also ask about expected side effects and how to deal with those.