Bringing services to seniors

Pharmacist Michael Yates counsels Audry Beiro during the M4A workshop at the Calera Public Library. (Reporter photo/Christine Boatwright)

By CHRISTINE BOATWRIGHT / Staff Writer

CALERA – The Middle Alabama Area Agency on Aging is trying to spread the word about what the agency offers to seniors and caregivers of Shelby County and surrounding areas.

M4A held two “New Year, New You” health and wellness workshops in Shelby County over the past month, including one at the Calera Public Library on Jan. 27. Companies and agencies from across the county offered free services, such as blood pressure checks and health screenings, and information on how to better care for seniors.

“Not many people know about our free services,” said Ashley Lemsky, State Health Insurance Assistance Program coordinator. “It’s not just for seniors, but for caregivers.”

“We’re trying to get activities going so seniors can be aware of what’s going on,” said Crystal Crim, Senior Medicare Patrol Coordinator for M4A. “We want to really get people aware of what our agency does.”

The workshop offered individual counseling on Medicare, fraud, scams and prescription assistance, as well as information on the Yellow Dot program, Shelby Baptist Medical System, Comfort Keepers and other organizations.

Christina Doege, Senior RX coordinator for M4A, said if M4A does not provide necessary services, the agency will advocate to get the services for individuals or refer the senior to another organization for assistance.

“You don’t have to be a senior, just take care of yourself, get information,” said Crim. “Not everything costs money.”

The workshops will continue in adjacent counties, with the next held in Chilton County in February.

“We’re promoting health and wellness services that benefit you for this new year,” Lemsky said.

For more information about the Middle Alabama Area Agency on Aging, call 670-5770 or visit m4a-alabama.org.