Award-winning Actress, Author Ruby Dee Inspires Seniors to Become Advocates for Their Health

October 6, 2006

The National Association for Advancement of Colored People in partnership with award-winning actress and author Ruby Dee today announced the launch of a podcast series encouraging seniors in the African American community to learn more about the Medicare prescription drug benefit, also known as Medicare Part D. Sponsored by Pfizer Inc, the podcast can be downloaded at www.naacp.org, as well as on iTunes, Google and other podcast directories.

Over the years Ms. Dee has encouraged seniors to make their health a priority. "As a mother and grandmother, I know how important it is to stay healthy as you get older, and part of staying healthy is getting the medications you need," said Ms. Dee. "As senior citizens, we need to take advantage of all the opportunities before us that can help us stay well in our extended years, including the new Medicare prescription drug benefit."

Joining Ms. Dee in the podcast is Bruce S. Gordon, President and CEO of the NAACP. Gordon saluted Dee's awareness efforts and emphasized the importance of managing one's health. "Ms. Dee is an inspiration and truly exemplifies all the wonderful things you can accomplish in life if you stay in good health," said Gordon. "I encourage everyone to follow her lead and get the necessary information about Medicare Part D."

Seniors across the country have already gained access to prescription drug coverage by enrolling in Medicare Part D, but there are still many eligible beneficiaries who have not yet made the decision to enroll. Dee urges seniors to learn about all available Medicare drug plans offered in their area to decide whether Medicare has a prescription drug plan that is right for them. The enrollment period for coverage in 2007 begins on November 15, 2006 and will last through the end of the year.

To listen to the podcast episodes or to view the full episode listing, visit www.naacp.org. For more information about Medicare prescription drug coverage, beneficiaries should log onto www.medicare.gov or call the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services hotline at 1-800-MEDICARE.

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