Washington’s health care reform battle has placed seniors in the crosshairs as scare tactics and spin doctoring on both sides of the debate has left older Americans confused and frightened about how reform would affect them. In response to seniors’ desire for unbiased information, the National Council on Aging is launching “Straight Talk for Seniors,” which will aim to educate seniors about the proposed health care reform legislation.

“For 40 years, NCOA has proudly stood up for the interests of older adults, from supporting the passage of Medicare in 1965 to helping people understand and navigate complex benefits programs today,” said NCOA President James P. Firman. “Seniors know they can trust NCOA to provide the straight talk they want on this important and complicated issue.”

NCOA will post on their Website their publication, Straight Talk for Seniors on Health Reform as well as distribute copies at senior gathering places. They will also host educational webinars and Q&A sessions at senior centers across the country.

The purpose of this educational effort is to clearly state the facts of the proposed legislation, which would close the prescription drug “doughnut hole,” improve affordability of and access to long term care, strengthen protections for low-income seniors, reduce wasteful Medicare spending, reduce payments to Medicare Advantage plans and charge high-income beneficiaries higher Medicare premiums.