— by  Darrell Eickhoff, USAF ret and member of AARP SC executive council AARP has undertaken the initiative to determine how AARP should honor and support our veterans and their families. A kickoff meeting was held in Washington, DC 0n October 3 & 4, 2016. South Carolina was one of nine states asked to participate in a pilot project due largely to AARP SC’s past efforts in veteran programs. Other states participating are: AL, AZ, KY, MI, MT, NC, TN, and …

— The first regular session of the 122nd South Carolina General Assembly will convene on Tuesday, January 10, 2016. AARP South Carolina is ready to work on behalf of its 615,000 Palmetto state members. Need to find contact information for your  House or Senate member?  >> Click here 2017 South Carolina State Advocacy Priorities FAMILY CAREGIVERS – About 700,000* caregivers in SC provide vital services to their loved ones. Caregivers in our state need quality supportive programs and access to services …

—  Mrs. Scott came to our attention when two of our volunteers were sent to evaluate her home by the Winyah Bay Long Term Recovery Group related to the October 2015 floods which affected a large portion of Georgetown and Williamsburg Counties. Along with the case manager from Hearts and Hands, Chris Gardner, Habitat for Humanity Georgetown’s construction supervisor and Lori Hardman, a volunteer, called upon Mrs. Geraldine Scott, an 85 year old widow whose home was impacted by that storm. …

— (This is the second in a series of articles about diabetes.) Whether you have prediabetes or diabetes, you can reduce the risk of progression of this chronic disease. Some people believe that prediabetes is not diabetes, but prediabetes indicates that the blood sugar is out of the normal range. Prediabetes is defined as a fasting blood sugar between 100 and 125 or an A1c (average glucose over 60 -90 days) between 5.7% and 6.4%. Diabetes is defined as a fasting …

— By Curtis Loftis, South Carolina Treasurer The holiday season is here and with it comes the age-old question, “What gift do I give my grandkids this year?” The usual sweater, toy or game may quickly be tossed aside or find its way to the back of a closet. I’m State Treasurer Curtis Loftis, here to offer you a better idea: This year, give a gift that will last. Give the gift of education by helping your grandchild on the path …

— By Linda H. Lamb As a registered nurse for more than 30 years, Cynthia Gilstrap gave help and comfort to patients during some of their most vulnerable times. But during her own most vulnerable time, following a stroke in 2015, she often has found help agonizingly hard to locate. Gilstrap, 55, of Pelzer, her sister, Lisa Evans, and legal advocates say the state Department of Social Services made things worse after Gilstrap—temporarily lacking a family caregiver—called DSS for assistance one …

— AARP South Carolina believes that today, a secure retirement is out of reach for millions of Americans, especially those who work for small businesses. According to the National Institute on Retirement Security, the conservative estimate of the total U.S. retirement savings deficit is $6.8 trillion. Nearly half of workers age fifty and older have less than $25,000 in savings and investments. The average 401(k) account balance in South Carolina is $20,630, ranked 50th in the US. One of the best …

— The South Carolina Department of Social Services has an Adult Advocacy Division that protects the health and welfare of elderly, disabled, and vulnerable adults. Adult Protective Services (APS) is part of this Division. The Division coordinates services to individuals who are 18 or older and are the victims of actual or potential abuse, neglect, self-neglect or exploitation. In June 2015 the Institute of Medicine and Public Health issued a Long Term Care Task Force report with 32 recommendations to improve …

—  The brain requires nutrients/food that keeps it functioning. Some of the foods that supply the brain with functional nutrients/foods are as follows: 1. Wholegrain: the brain needs energy in order to concentrate and focus, this comes from an adequate supply of energy (sources -wholegrain cereals, bread, rice, and pasta). 2. Fish—oily: the brain needs fat—the most effective omega-3 fats occur naturally in oily fish. Good plant sources include linseed (flaxseed), soybeans, pumpkin seeds and walnuts, those fats are important for …

— Open enrollment for health insurance plans available through the Affordable Care Act marketplace runs Nov. 1-Jan. 31, and AARP South Carolina is encouraging consumers to shop around. Health plans and premiums change from year to year, and so does an individual’s health care needs. Sixty percent of those who actively re-enrolled last year switched to a different plan and saved an average of $516 after tax credits. South Carolina has not expanded Medicaid, and the state has a higher percentage …