Huntington, NY - Attorney Brian Andrew Tully, Esq. is offering a series of talks titled "Advance Care Planning: A Discussion of the New Medicare Benefit." The goal of these talks is to empower families to not only complete the necessary legal documents but to encourage quality, voluntary conversations between senior citizens, their families - and now their doctors - during wellness visits.
Starting January 1, a new Medicare regulation introduced by the Obama administration which encourages end-of-life planning went into effect. Under the new policy, outlined in a Medicare regulation, the government will pay doctors who advise patients on options for end-of-life care. One of those options may include forgoing any life-sustaining treatment. While the current health care legislation signed into law by President Obama in March 2010 allows Medicare to cover annual physical examinations or wellness visits, the new rule says Medicare will cover "voluntary advance care planning" to discuss end-of-life treatment as part of the annual visit.
"In general, I am in favor of the new Medicare benefit, provided it encourages voluntary discussions between the doctor and the patient about advance directives, should the patient be unable to communicate his choices in the future," Mr. Tully said. "As with life-and-death issues, there needs to be compassion and vigilance."
A member of the Suffolk County and New York State Bar Associations, Mr. Tully is certified as an elder law attorney by the National Elder Law Foundation and focuses his law practice on life care planning, elder law, estate planning, Medicaid benefits and asset protection. Most recently, he was named to the Board of Directors of the Life Care Planning Law Firms Association. Earlier this year, he received accreditation from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to represent and assist veterans and their spouses in the preparation, presentation and prosecution of claims for benefits, including the Aide and Attendance Pension.
In 2004, he founded the ElderCare Resource Center, Inc. (www.eldercareresourcecenter.info), whose mission is to be the community resource for support, answers and expertise in regard to advance planning and informed decision making about present and future long-term healthcare. The Suffolk Nassau Regional Business Partnership voted the ElderCare Resource Center as Educational Business of the Year in 2005. He is also the author of the 2009 updated edition of "Health Care Decision Making in the Elder Law Practice," which is a resource for other attorneys and is a part of the Elder Law Portfolio Series released nationwide by Aspen Publishers.
For dates and times of these discussions, call (631) 424-2800 or visit www.elderlaw.pro.
* A head shot of Mr. Tully is available via email and upon request.