U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) held another telephone town hall with thousands of Iowa seniors, answering questions on a range of topics related to the COVID-19 pandemic and providing information and resources for seniors to utilize and to protect against scammers and fraud. Senator Ernst was joined by Joe Sample of the Iowa Association of Area Agencies on Aging and Dwane McFerrin of the National Association of Health Underwriters.
“While our town halls during this pandemic are a little different than we are used to – holding them by phone – these calls continue to be a great opportunity for me to hear directly from Iowans. (Tuesday) I had the chance to connect with our seniors and help answer questions and provide them with important information during this pandemic,” said Senator Joni Ernst. “We’re all in this together and we can each do our part to help one another stay safe and healthy. To Iowans of all ages across our state, stay safe and stay strong.”
Senator Ernst has been fighting for Iowa’s seniors throughout this COVID-19 pandemic. She called for bipartisan action to crackdown on scammers who are targeting Iowa seniors. Senator Ernst also pushed the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to waive a tax filing requirement for seniors and others who normally do not file taxes in order for them to receive their direct cash assistance.
She also helped secure a number of important relief measures for seniors in the three bipartisan packages Congress passed and that are now law, including:
- Broadly expanded Medicare’s telehealth services, so seniors can access more care and health services from home.
- Included free diagnostic COVID-19 testing and free coverage of a future COVID-19 vaccine.
- Provided additional funding for Aging and Disability Services Programs, which supports senior nutrition, home-delivered meals, community-based services, and family caregivers.
- Required Medicare Part D plans to provide up to a 90-day supply of prescription medication if a senior requests this during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Senator Ernst has held multiple telephone town halls over the last few weeks, including one where she was joined by the state director of AARP Iowa, Brad Anderson, and the dean of the Carver College of Medicine at the University of Iowa, Dr. Brooks Jackson.
Last week, Ernst penned a column about her efforts to secure relief for and ensure the care and safety of Iowa’s seniors. Read her column HERE.