Latest News by Herb Weiss

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Herb Weiss

Contributing Writer

About

Herb Weiss has enjoyed a distinguished 41 year career in journalism, earning a national reputation as an expert on aging, health care and medical issues. Over 780 articles that he has authored or coauthored have appeared in national, state and local publications. Governor Gina Raimondo appointed Him to the Rhode Island Advisory Commission on aging. Today, Herb’s weekly newspaper column appears in the Pawtucket Times and Woonsocket call, two North Rhode Island daily newspapers, and will now run in RINewsToday.com. Herb and his wife, Patty Zacks, reside in Pawtucket, Rhode Island.

 

Congressman Cicilline poised for legacy as next fiery advocate on aging – Herb Weiss

Picking Up the Mantle of Fiery Aging Advocate, Claude Pepper – Cicilline Moves to Re-Establish the House Permanent Select Committee on Aging By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging issues Congressman David Cicilline is poised to offer a resolution to re-establish the House Permanent Select Committee on Aging, whose work came to an end in early January…
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Ron St. Pierre back on-air. “Ron & Jen’s Great Escape” positive podcast. – Herb Weiss

Photo: Jen Brien & Ron St. Pierre By Herb Weiss, contributing writer One might say his career has come full circle from its early beginnings on a small radio station in Woonsocket, to programming and performing on air at popular Rhode Island radio stations, to serving as a sports anchor on television, as well. A…
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Time to resolve RI’s ongoing Nursing Home staffing crisis – Herb Weiss

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging issues The latest release of AARP’s Nursing Home COVID-19 Dashboard shows that both cases and deaths in nursing homes declined in the four weeks ending March 21. Although these rates are improving, chronic staffing problems in nursing homes—revealed during the COVID-19 pandemic—continue. In Rhode Island, 30% of nursing homes reported a…
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Seniors with student loans: AARP’s new online tool to manage debt – Herb Weiss

AARP’s New Internet Tool Helps Seniors Manage Hefty Student Loan Debt  By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging Over the years, AARP Public Policy Institute (PPI) has tracked the staggering amount of student loan debt that seniors are shouldering to help their children and grandchildren finance their higher education. Many people age 50 also take on…
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“Georgia on My Mind” – Herb Weiss

by Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging issues – opinion Protecting the Voting Rights of Older Adults Rewriting election rules has ramifications for voting accessibility of older adults. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Republicans now control 30 state houses with 18 being controlled by the Democrats, one legislature being nonpartisan. As the…
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Age Discrimination, Workplace Issues at House Hearing – Herb Weiss

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging issues Just days ago, Rep. Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-VA), chairman of the House Committee on Education and Labor, and Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IL) introduced, H.R. 2062, the bipartisan “Protection Older Workers Against Discrimination Act” (POWADA), a bill that would strengthen federal anti-discrimination protections for older workers. The legislation was…
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RI Senate Tackles High Cost of Prescription Drugs – Herb Weiss

by Herb Weiss, contributing writer Photo: Commonwealth Fund In the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic, as Governor Dan McKee and the Rhode Island General Assembly move to hammer out their Fiscal Year 2022 budget, Senate lawmakers push a package of eight legislative proposals to put the brakes on skyrocketing cost of prescription drugs. The Senate…
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Chronic Fraud Victimization an Escalating Problem – Herb Weiss

 By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging issues Everyone has heard of the ago old proverb, “Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.”  After being tricked once, hopefully a person learns from one’s mistakes and avoids being tricked in the same way again.   But for many victims of financial fraud,…
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Sen. Whitehouse Pushes to Protect Nursing Home Residents, Employees – Herb Weiss

Whitehouse Pushes for COVID-19 Senate Proposal to Protect Residents, Employees By Herb Weiss  As the one-year anniversary of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic approaches, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) joins Senators Bob Casey (D-PA), Raphael Warnock (D-GA), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), and Cory Booker (D-NJ) in introducing a legislative proposal to save lives of nursing home residents and employees…
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Dr. Teresa Chopoorian: McKnight’s Women of Distinction Award winner – Herb Weiss

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging After reviewing hundreds of submitted entries, an independent panel, composed of two dozen judges, selected 19 women, including Dr. Teresa J. Chopoorian, to be inducted into the McKnight’s Women of Distinction Hall of Honor as part of the program’s third annual class.  Dr. Chopoorian serves as Vice President and Administrator of…
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AARP Tips on Shopping for a Financial Advisor – Herb Weiss

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging issues As a result of living in times of economic uncertainty resulting from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic retirees are worried about how they can protect their hard-earned egg nest from the volatility of the stock market.  It is even now more important to be working with a financial…
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Never forgetting will help us keep the promise of “never again.” – by Herb Weiss

Never forgetting will help us keep the promise of “never again.” By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging issues During a Pro-Trump rally, as thousands of rioters swarmed the US Capitol on Jan. 6, Robert Keith Packer, sporting an unkempt beard, came wearing a black hoodie sweatshirt emblazoned with the phrase “Camp Auschwitz,” in white…
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Vaccine Decision – Getting to ‘YES’ – by Herb Weiss

Study Takes Look at Decision Making in Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging Last month, the first shipment of COVID-19 vaccines came to Rhode Island. With limited stockpiles, debate in the state is heating up as to who gets priority in getting vaccinated. While many Rhode Islanders are waiting for…
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AARP: Vaccinate seniors now! Leaders respond. Add YOUR voice.

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging issues The debate heats up as to how Rhode Island should distribute its limited stock of COVID-19 vaccine. Days ago, AARP Rhode Island urged state officials and lawmakers to put seniors on the top of the list to protect their lives. Older Rhode Islanders should be a priority…
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Ramping up COVID-19 Vaccine Plans

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging As state health officials say they are clamoring for more doses of COVID-19 vaccine, just days ago, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said in an interview with NBC’s Lester Holt there is no “reserve stockpile” of COVID-19 vaccine doses left to release to states, and all vaccine has now…
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COVID-19 and 2021: Looking into the Crystal Ball – by Herb Weiss

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging issues  Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) cases continue to surge across the nation.  As of last Monday, nearly 18,986,236 Americans have contracted COVID-19 with over 331,930 dying, says the John Hopkins Coronavirus Research Center. Projection models say that deaths may spike to over 500,000 by March 2021.  As 2021 approaches,…
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Older Voters Key to Georgia’s Senate Runoff Election – Herb Weiss

Photo: Atlanta Journal-Constitution By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging issues Both Democrats and Republicans know that the proverbial clock is ticking.  It’s 15 days before the Georgia’s Senate runoff election scheduled for Jan. 15.   At press time, 1,336,136 registered Georgia voters have gone to the polls, says the U.S. Election Project.  The percent turnout of…
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Tackling surge of COVID-19 in Nursing Homes – Herb Weiss

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer, aging issues Over the months, while public health officials watch the uptick in new COVID-19 cases, Congress releases two reports, one taking a snapshot of nursing home performance and resident deaths throughout the first eight months of the pandemic, and the other one sounding the alarm about the impact of COVID-19 on the…
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AARP Fights Consumer Fraud – by Herb Weiss

AARP Continues its Fight Against Consumer Fraud   By Herb Weiss  Every year, fraudsters continue to operate government imposter scams falsely claim to be from federal agencies, including the Internal Revenue Service, Social Security Administration, to get people to turn over money or personal information. Every year, hundreds of thousands of Americans continue to fall…
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COVID-19 Changes Way Americans Think About Retirement

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging issues The raging coronavirus pandemic is changing the fundamental way working adults think, plan and save for their retirement, underscoring the important role Social Security and Medicare play for retirees, according to the 2020 Wells Fargo Retirement study conducted by The Harris Poll in August. The annual research report examines the…
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The Impact of COVID-19’s Social Isolation on Seniors – by Herb Weiss

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging As COVID-19 cases continued to surge across the nation, AARP Foundation in collaboration with the United Health Foundation (UHF), released a report last month taking a look as to how the COVID-19 pandemic impacts seniors who find themselves socially isolated.  According to the recently released report, “The Pandemic…
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AARP’s new COVID-19 Dashboard for national/local Nursing Home Data

AARP Gives a Dashboard Snapshot of COVID-19’s Impact on Nursing Homes By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging While public health experts are predicting a second spike of the COVID-19 virus, expecting it to hit the nation as early as – now – and reaching its peak in December, AARP releases its Nursing Home COVID-19…
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Social Security ‘21 COLA Increase Anemic

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging issues With the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) announcement of next year’s Social Security and Supplemental Security Income’s (SSI) meager cost-of-living adjustment (COLA), over 70 million beneficiaries will only see an increase of 1.3 percent in their monthly checks in 2021.  Last year’s COLA increase was 2.8 percent, the…
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16 year olds and up: Be a Poll Worker – Shortages Threaten Elections

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer With spikes in COVID-19 cases occurring across the nation, causing concerns about the safety or health risk to workers staffing polling sites, AARP announces a new initiative to recruit persons of all ages for the upcoming presidential election to work the polling sites.  AARP along with the Association of Young…
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Butterflies Bring Comfort in Time of Grieving

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging Susan feels “joy in her heart and complete happiness” whenever she sees a butterfly. A butterfly came into her life as she mourned her brother’s death in 1990. Before he died, she remembers her brother saying that he would come back as a butterfly. The 62-year-old Pawtucket resident…
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Senate Comm. on Aging: Impact of Isolation and Loneliness on Seniors During COVID-19

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging As the COVID-19 crisis has shuttered businesses throughout the nation, state and federal health officials scramble to stop the spread of this deadly virus.  As states begin to slowly open up their economies, a growing number of researchers are finding that mandated social distancing and isolation through self-quarantine may have…
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The Greatest Generation’s Last Hurrah

Editor’s Note:  On June 6, 2020, we celebrate the 76th anniversary of D-Day.  This article, recognizing America’s Greatest Generation who valiantly fought in World War II, was initially published in the Pawtucket Times on November 15, 2014. By Herb Weiss The G.I. Generation, born between 1901 to 1924, (coined the “The Greatest Generation” by nationally acclaimed journalist Tom Brokaw),…
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Senate Aging Committee Tackles COVID-19’s Devastating Impact on Seniors

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer, aging According to an analysis conducted for the Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity, as of May 22, in the 39 states that currently report such figures, 43 percent of all coronavirus (COVID-19) deaths have taken place in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Since March, the COVID-19 cases in Rhode Island’s…
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Social Security – the Third Rail in Politics

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging As Congress begins to hammer out the fifth coronavirus stimulus package to continue its efforts to jump start the nation’s economy, President Donald Trump warns he will not sign any bill that does not include a payroll tax cut.   “We’re not doing anything without a payroll tax cut,”…
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Tele-Town Hall Gets the Word Out About COVID-19

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging This week alone, AARP, in some 30 states, conducted tele-town halls and 123 state calls have taken place since the pandemic surfaced. AARP Rhode Island, representing 132,000 members age 50 and over, was among the very first states to address the pandemic in a tele-town hall over two…
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Shore Up our Social Security Reserve

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging Each year, starting in 1941, the Social Security Board of Trustees has presented a required report on the financial status of the program to the Congress. Now amidst the world-wide coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic forcing the shuttering of the nation’s businesses triggering the worst economic downslide since the 1930s Great…
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4th Stimulus should protect Seniors

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging As part of the Economic Impact Payment provision in the recently enacted $ 2.2 trillion stimulus bill, at press time about 80 million Americans have already received their $ 1,200 stimulus check ($2,400 for joint filers) through direct deposit.  But for those 70 million Americans waiting for this…
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Congress should not forget seniors in Phase 4 stimulus package – Herb Weiss

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging Just weeks after Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, the $2.2 trillion emergency stimulus package signed into law by President Donald Trump on March 27, lawmakers continue to look for ways to jump start the nation’s economy by passing another stimulus package. Lawmakers…
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AARP Town Hall Educates Seniors on COVID-19

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging With more than 278 Americans now infected with the Coronavirus virus (COVID-19) and at least 7,159 people dying from the deadly virus, according to an April 3 blog article the New York Times, “about 311 million people in at least 41 states, three counties, eight cities, the District…
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The Coronavirus and its Effect on Social Security

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging As the coronavirus (COVID-19) spreads across the nation, the Social Security Administration (SSA) and other federal agencies strive to cope with meeting the huge challenges they face resulting from the unexpected pandemic outbreak, attempting to juggle worker safety while maintaining their daily operations. On March 19, Key House…
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AARP What Seniors Need to Know About COVID-19

by Herb Weiss, Contributing writer on aging Twenty-four-hour programming on cable television, television networks, talk radio and newspapers report the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) across the nation. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), just days ago there were about 700 confirmed and presumed U.S. cases from 38 jurisdictions, that’s 36 states…
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Strategy for Combating Seniors’ Social Isolation and Loneliness – by Herb Weiss

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging Nearly one in four older adults residing in the community are socially isolated. Seniors who are experiencing social isolation or loneliness may face a higher risk of mortality, heart disease and depression, says a newly released report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine (NASEM), a…
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Children Can Bring Message of Life after Death

by Herb Weiss, contributing writer (Note: February 20, 2020 marks the 17-year anniversary of the Station Nightclub fire. This article, reviewing Dave Kane’s book, “41 Signs of Hope,” was initially published in the Pawtucket Times on December 20, 2014.)   The tragic, untimely death of a child will bring emotional pain and suffering to the parents. But, amazingly through horrific…
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RI Lawmakers to Tackle High Prescription Drug Costs

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer, aging The Washington, DC-based AARP began its call for reducing prescription drug prices nationally in the late spring of 2019. At the same time, state legislatures around the country began taking up legislation. However, in Rhode Island, where the legislature meets only once a year, from January to June, it…
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3rd Time’s the Charm for Reestablishing the House Aging Committee?

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging Twenty-six years after the House Democratic Leadership’s belt-tightening efforts to save $1.5 million resulted in the termination of the House Permanent Select Committee on Aging, U.S. Congressman David N. Cicilline reintroduces legislation to reestablish the House Aging panel, active from 1974 until 1993. Initially the House panel had…
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2020 Census Impacts Programs for Older Americans

2020 Census Impacts Programs and Services for Older Americans By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging By April 1, every home across the nation will receive an invitation from the U.S. Census Bureau, a nonpartisan government agency, to participate in the 2020 Census. Once this invitation arrives, it’s important for you to immediately answer the short…
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Taking Charge: Collected Stories on Aging Boldly

Taking Charge: Collected Stories on Aging Boldly, published in 2016, contains a collection of 79 articles covering a myriad of aging issues ranging from care giving, retirement planning to thoughts about spirituality and death. These articles are intended to empower with practical tools to live a happy, engaged and empowered during the second half of…
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Working Seniors Priming the Nation’s Economic Engine

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging In recent years, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida and even former House Speaker Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, have warned that the growing number of seniors is fast becoming an economic drag to the nation’s economic growth, citing the spiraling costs of…
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Seniors: What to expect in your 2020 Social Security COLA

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging The Social Security Administration (SSA) announced that Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for nearly 69 million Americans will increase 1.6 percent in 2020 (Some recipients receive both Social Security and SSI benefits). Social Security and SSI recipients will be notified about their new benefit amount…
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Uncompensated Cost of Caregivers is a Over $470 Billion

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging Approximately 41 million unpaid family caregivers provided an estimated 34 billion hours of care in 2017 — worth a whopping $470 billion — to their parents, spouses, partners, and friends, according to the latest report in AARP’s Valuing the Invaluable series. The 2019 estimated value of family caregiving…
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Simple Tips on Surviving the Holidays – by Herb Weiss

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer on aging The holiday season can be a double-edge sword. For some, it brings feelings of warmth and joy, even closeness and belonging to family and friends, but for others it produces, extra stress and anxiety and feelings of isolation and depression. Increased demands and family obligations during Christmas through…
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Reauthorization of OAA Now in the Senate’s Hands

By Herb Weiss Last month, after a 40-minute debate, the House moved to pass H.R. 4334, The Dignity in Aging Act of 2019, a bipartisan reauthorization of the Older Americans Act (OAA) that provides funding for a wide range of popular local and state programs. These programs make sure seniors have access to food thru…
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Falls and Injuries are Issues to Aging in Place

By Herb Weiss, contributing writer (Published in Woonsocket Call on October 20, 2019) Last Wednesday morning in Dirksen Senate Office Building 562, the U.S. Special Committee on Aging held a hearing to put a spotlight on the economic consequences on falls and to explore ways to prevent and reduce falls and related injuries. At the…
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Online Shopping not only for the young

Presenting our new contributing writer, Herb Weiss. By Herb Weiss, contributing writer, RINewsToday.com Caregivers find it difficult to shop at retail stores Survey findings from a recently released national study, by the Washington, DC-based AARP and NORC at the University of Chicago, will send a strong message to America’s businesses. With the graying of America,…
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