Your IRA can affect your Medicaid eligibility

submitted by E. Garrett Gummer, III, Esquire, and Maureen L. Anderson, Esquire, www.GummerElderLaw.com

When you are planning for Medicaid coverage in a nursing home, it’s important to take any IRAs you own into account.

Medicaid applicants can keep only a small amount of resources (usually $2,400) in order to be eligible for benefits. Certain resources may be exempt from this rule. Whether your IRA is exempt often depends on whether it is in “payout status.”

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Understanding delays in cancer diagnoses

submitted by Michael Ksiazek, Esq. and Jeffrey Krawitz, Esq., Stark & Stark Attorneys at Law, www.Stark-Stark.com

Sadly and all too often, we hear about individuals who have been diagnosed with late-stage cancer, potentially losing the window of opportunity for positively effective treatments. Research shows misdiagnoses account for as much as 14% of late diagnoses, 75% of which involved negligence by a physician.

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On-site cremation vs. third-party cremation

submitted by Jason “Oz” Oszczakiewicz, Owner/Supervisor, Varcoe-Thomas Funeral Home of Doylestown, Inc.

There are many things to consider when a family selects cremation as a form of disposition and one of the most important decisions is the consideration when selecting a firm that may or may not provide on-site cremation services. State laws dictate that funeral homes in NJ cannot own their own, nor operate, an on-site crematory so they must use a third party cremation provider for families.

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Do hospital falls equal medical malpractice?

submitted by Michael C. Ksiazek, Attorney at Stark & Stark Attorneys at Law, www.Stark-Stark.com

The question of whether a slip and fall that occurs within a hospital constitutes medical malpractice, rather than ordinary negligence, has been a much debated topic. The distinction is important because, in Pennsylvania, there are a number of procedural hurdles – which do not apply to an ordinary negligence case – a plaintiff must first tackle in order to successfully file and pursue a medical malpractice case.

There has been some inconsistency among Pennsylvania courts, as well as courts in other states, on this issue. This makes it very difficult to determine or predict whether a hospital fall case will be deemed a medical malpractice and, therefore, subject to the medical malpractice procedural requirements.

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Ho! Ho! WHOA!

submitted by Wendy Wotlman, Owner/Operator, Meineke Car Care Center Doylestown, www.Meineke.com

It’s getting cold, the snow IS coming and the holidays are fast approaching. Time to visit friends and family, so here are a few tips to keep your and yours safe.

First and foremost is never drive after having enjoyed a couple holiday cocktails. No day is best spent in a hospital bed.

Avoid driving while fatigued. We all tend to rush around shopping, driving kids, etc., but this takes a toll on our bodies and mind, reducing reaction time.

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Now Is the time to winterize your car

submitted by Herb Elsner II, Owner, Herb Elsner’s Auto Repair and Towing, www.elsnerautorepair.com

With the cold winter months quickly approaching, the last thing you want is for your car to break down or have an accident because your car has not been properly winterized or inspected by a professional to help you prepare you for these dangerous conditions.

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Is your siding choice ‘as solid as a rock?’

submitted by Scott Miller, Service Manager, C and C Family Roofing

Remember when re-siding your house was limited to three or four options? Today there are numerous options to choose from. One of those options is cement board siding.

There are a lot of opinions out there regarding the efficiency and practicality of cement board siding. Many of those opinions come from installation companies that see the trends in their sales. Why is this material so controversial if it’s supposed to be so good?

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Medicaid helps children who live with aging parents

submitted by E. Garrett Gummer, III, Esquire, and Maureen L. Anderson, Esquire, www.GummerElderLaw.com

In Pennsylvania, if you give your home to your children (or to someone else) and then apply for Medicaid coverage in a nursing home, you can be disqualified for a long period of time. You are required to spend down your resources on your own care before applying for Medicaid, rather than give them away.

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Santa’s not the only one with a checklist

submitted by Scott Miller, Service Manager, C and C Family Roofing

A chill is in the air, which is the first sign that winter is approaching. There are just a few weeks left to get our homes in order for the cold winter ahead. But where do you start?

The holiday season is already busy enough so here are some important issues to resolve so that your winter is a pleasant one. Your roof is the primary protective shield from snow and ice. If your roof is not functioning properly then you will get water damage or mold. Have a roofing contractor check your roof material and flashings and put together an action plan to correct any issues found.

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Is your medical malpractice claim actionable under law?

submitted by Edward S. Shensky, Esq. and Leslie A. Mitnick, R.N., Esq.

Medical malpractice, a fairly common legal claim, requires four elements that must be met to prove the case. These four elements are duty, breach, causation and damages.

Duty refers to the responsibility that the healthcare provider has to the patient to act both reasonably and appropriately in providing care or treatment to said patient. In a healthcare provider/patient relationship, the provider has a duty to act within the “standard of care” for the patient and must act as would any other provider, in his or her area of expertise, given the circumstances.

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