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Getting Extra Help for Medicare Patients During the Pandemic

The pandemic has made getting necessary outside help and care complicated for many adults. Here is how one man made it work.

Thomas Rexroat understands hardship. The Indianapolis resident suffered burns on more than 90 percent of his body in a house fire seven years ago. When COVID-19 hit, Rexroat — who prides himself on helping others, even with difficulty walking due to nerve damage in his legs — found himself homebound and in need of some extra help.

At the beginning of the pandemic and shelter-in-place mandate, Rexroat relied on Oak Street Health, a network of primary care centers for adults on Medicare. The organization has continued their care plans through telehealth visits, proactive wellness checks, and deliveries of food, medical and household supplies.

“I was amazed to receive a phone call every day from my Oak Street Health care team to see how I was doing and if I needed anything,” said Rexroat. “Most of my friends didn’t hear from their doctors at all, and Oak Street Health even delivered groceries to my home. They truly care about me and went above and beyond to help. I am so grateful for my care team.”

COVID-19 emphasized just how important it is for older adults to engage in preventive, primary care and manage their chronic conditions.

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