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News Briefs about education, healthcare, development & open space, governance and social issues in LIC, Sunnyside, Astoria, Jackson Heights, Flushing, Jamaica, Corona Queens


Doctors in Queens Astoria LIC & Sunnyside | doctors in lic astoria sunnyside long island city queens doctors
Doctors in Queens Astoria LIC & Sunnyside

Finding Dr. Right - Doctors in Queens

Doctors and Healthcare in LIC, Astoria, Sunnyside, Woodside & Queens

February / Long Island City / Queens Buzz. I attended a community lecture put on by Mount Sinai Queens entitled Finding Doctor Right. It was hosted at the Avalon Riverview, which is located down on 2-01 50th Avenue near the East River in LIC.

When I arrived, I took note of the audience demographics which had a female / male skew of about two to one; and the ages ranged from starting a family to planning retirement. Our speaker was Dr. Nierman, VP of Medical Affairs and Chief Medical Officer, and one of the people responsible for hiring doctors at Mount Sinai Queens.

Click here to read our report and view photos about finding Dr. Right – doctors and healthcare in LIC and Queens.



Affordable Care Act - 3rd Year

Open Enrollment Ends January 31st, 2016queens health insurance healthcare queens

November 2015 / Jamaica Neighborhood / Healthcare in Queens / Queens Buzz.

I attended a workshop last Fall, intended to help folks enroll, re-enroll or address issues they may be having with their Affordable Care Act health insurance.

There are a few things you should know. Perhaps the most important is that if you don't have health insurance you will have to pay $695 or 2.5% of your income in taxes.

And if you don't have health insurance you can sign up for it by telphone, on the web or in person through the Affordable Care Act. What you ultimately pay for the insurance is subject to your earnings in the year.

It's important to note that there are various levels of coverage, so depending on your needs, you can choose one that's right for your healthcare needs and budget. Open enrollment began November 1, 2015 and remains open until January 31st, 2016. There are some exceptions for this deadline for life changing situations like for some marital status changes, newborns and location changes. Contact the New York State of Health.

For the year 2016, over 12 million Americans have enrolled in the Affordable Care Act insurance plans. And I believe there are something like 2 million enrollees in the New York State of Health plan.


Affordable Care Act Insurance Deadline

February 15th Is Final Day To Begin NYS Insurance Enrollment

Deadline For Enrollment Completion Extended To February 28th

ny state of health obamacare affordable care act queensUpdated February 15 / February 12, 2015 / Manhattan Healthcare / Gotham Buzz.

New Enrollments For ACA Health Insurance Ends February 15, 2015. Those who have begun the enrollment process by February 15th will have until February 28th to complete them. The deadline is February 15th to begin an enrollment. We received reports that many folks were having difficulty in getting through to a telephone operator, so it looks like there was a spike in demand near the deadline, which also happened in 2014.

On Saturday, NY State of Health extended the enrollment deadline by two weeks to enable those who do not complete their enrollments by Sunday, February 15th. Hence, enrollees now have until February 28th to complete enrollments in the New York State health insurance plans associated with the Affordable Care Act. It's worth mentioning that the NY State Of Health does not have operators available on Sunday and that they are only available Saturday from 9 am - 1 pm.

Enrollment On Target With Government Incentives. According to recent national news services, there were already 9.5 million enrollees in the Affordable Care Act plan as of a few weeks ago [mid / late January 2015]. The total enrollment target nationally for this year is 10.5 million. Last year the New York State of Health - which runs the NYS Affordable Care Act enrollments - signed up nearly 371,000 people. There were reports in January 2015 that the number of NY State of Health enrollees has grown this year. We also understand that the folks who enrolled last year and are currently participants in a plan will be automatically renewed in their Affordable Care Act Health insurance, so they are not required to update their enrollment with the state. But that said, they must renew their status with their health insurance provider around the time of the anniversary of their enrollment.

One news site recommended that folks already enrolled in the plan ought to review and update their enrollment to make sure they want to stay with their present insurer, and that they fully understand the tax consequences of their healthcare choices.

Tax Penalties 2015. One report noted that the majority of Affordable Care Act enrollees get some measure of monetary incentive to enroll in the plan. In 2014 the tax penalty for not having health insurance was $95 per adult or 1% of household income. In 2015 the penalty rises to $325 per adult or 2% of income.

Click here to view the New York State of Health website.


Air Beam: What Are You Breathing?

Adventurous Bike Ride With TA Queens ... On The Road To Find Out

air beam air quality queens nycNovember 10, 2014 / Queens Neighborhoods / Biking Queens / Queens Buzz. I just returned from a bike ride that began at the Central Park Boathouse and ended in Jackson Heights at 34th Street and the BQE Expressway. Celia Castellan, who is the organizer for Transportation Alternatives Queens [aka TA Queens] collaborated with me on this story which is about Queens & Manhattan air quality and also about biking. Celia is shown in the photo to your right, atop the Queensboro Bridge around 6 pm Monday night as we bike commuted from Manhattan to Queens.

It was a beautiful night with clear, dry air and temperatures around 60. Our mission was to test the Air Beam, a new device designed to enable people to measure the air quality, and then map the information to a public website, so that the public can begin to see what's going on with the air they breathe. The Air Beam is a blue, slightly-larger-than-a-cell-phone device, that you wear to measure the air [quality].

We began the ride in Central Park. We were on our way after receiving only a couple minutes of instruction. The device is brand-spanking new and must be sync'ed to an Android cell phone. The inventors work for a non-profit and are trying to raise a bit of money to mass produce it.

I'm going to take you on the rest of the ride, including a sampling of the air quality readings along the way, and provide some photos of the Queensboro Bridge bicycle commute a bit later this week. In the meantime, check out the Air Casting website and if you want to help, there are a few more days left on their Kickstarter campaign.


Affordable Healthcare Deadline Monday

Enrollment Trending Toward 7 Million Target

New York State Of Health Surpasses 1.1 Million Applicants & 782K Enrollees

affordable care act enrollment nysMarch 31, 2014 / Jackson Heights / Queens Healthcare / Queens Buzz. Get ready for an endless spin game about the enrollment numbers of the Affordable Healthcare Act aka Obamacare.

 

It appears the Administration is on target to achieve the first target they had set, prior to running into innumerable problems in October 2013 with the federal healthcare insurance website - healthcare.gov - when enrollments first began. Following the opening website debacle, the Administration lowered the enrollment targets from seven million to six million. They hit the six million number last week and the application and enrollment activity has spiked during the final week to submit an application.

 

There are 36 states participating in the rollout of the national health insurance plan and 14 states which have opted out of the plan. New York state is one of the 36 participants and as of Sunday night, New York State had received over 1.1 million applications and nearly 800,000 people had enrolled. These numbers are up significantly affordable care act in queensversus three weeks ago, when applications were at about 900,000 and enrollment at about 500,000. As of early March, we were informed that about 70% of the enrollees were people who had not previously had health insurance. Hence by that metric the plan appears to be achieving its goal in New York State.

 

According to national reports, it also appears that the late applicants are skewing younger, which was another important metric for the Administration. The composition of young and older ages is needed to enable insurance company participants / healthcare plan providers make the financials work.

 

Opponents of the Affordable Care Act [ACA] say that the enrollment numbers are inflated, as the enrollment numbers don't take into account enrollees making their first payments. Some opponents are also predicting that the enrollees are largely comprised of folks who will need government subsidies to pay their insurance premiums. Proponents have said that giving tax deductions for health insurance to people trying to maintain their health, is no different than providing tax deductions for interest on loans used to purchase a home.

 

We've attended a number of sessions about the Affordable Care Act and the regular folks attending these sessions have made statements saying that they are no longer locked into jobs they don't like because of health insurance, that the Affordable Care Act has significantly lowered their healthcare costs and that they are relieved to finally be covered by health insurance.

 

Applications must be submitted no later than 11.59 pm Monday night, March 31st. We understand that national applicants will have another 7 days to provide documentation for application submissions that fail to meet the application criteria. And in New York State that deadline appears to be April 15th, but in both cases we suggest you confirm it by calling the group with which you're working.


ACA Deadline Extended To 12/23

Registration For January 1st 2014 Insurance Coverage Extended To Dec 23rd In Queens

affordable healthcare act in queens astoria lic sunnyside woodside jackson heights flushing corona jamaica nyDecember 17, 2013 / Healthcare in Queens / Queens Buzz. The deadline for registering with the New York State healthcare / insurance exchange for January 1st, 2014 insurnace coverage has been pushed back a week from December 15th to December 23rd. We understand that implementation of the Affordable Care Act [ACA aka Obamacare] continues to be affected by executional problems, but according to experts, the problems are being addressed and the number of issues are abating.

In the photo to your right are Queens residents talking to Affordable Healthcare Act navigators who provide free assistance to people in selecting a healthcare plan. This event was sponsored by the office of City Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer at LaGuardia Community College in LIC.

There are a few things we've picked up over the past week that are worth mentioning at this point.

First be aware that the providers listed on any given insurer's website is subject to change and sometimes the providers listed have quit the program and sometimes there are providers who are participating in the program who are not listed. This situation also oftentimes occurs with other insurance providers / health maintenance organizations. According to a policy expert from the Robert Wood Foundation, a healthcare focused non-profit, the listing / not listing issue on insurers' sites has increased by about 10% since the implementation of the Affordable Healthcare Act began in Queens on October 1st. The reason for this is that healthcare providers and insurers continue to analyze and evaluate how they are going to manage their networks to accommodate the influx of new patients / clients.

Another thing participants need to pay attention to is that participants need to obtain a card or member number from the insurance company in order to obtain / use the benefits from the listed healthcare providers. As we understand it, a number of people have registered using the NYS exchange and thought they had completed the process prior to obtaining their member number / insurance card. Exchange registrants need to follow up with the insurers to obtain the card. We also understand - but this has not been confirmed - that participants need to make their first payment for the plan they choose, prior to being able to obtain the benefits / use the healthcare system.

Lastly, another item we picked up refers to a clause in the program with respect to people who switch plans. Healthcare Plan Switchers are able to change providers during the year, but those who do so will be subject to higher co-pays. So try to choose a provider you think you will work for the long haul. We'll have more on the implementation of the Affordable Healthcare Act in Queens later this month.

Click here for prior coverage of the Affordable Healthcare Act in Queens [aka Obamacare in Queens].


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Obamacare Comes To Queens

Affordable Care / Obamacare Comes To Queens

Queens Prepares For The Affordable Healthcare Act

November 13, 2013. Update - Over 197,000 New Yorkers Have Completed Applications of which over 48,000 have already selected and enrolled in a plan. Over 142,000 people were helped by the New York State of Health which runs the health plan marketplace for New York State. Note that open enrollment for the tax year 2014 ends on March 31, 2014.

November 7, 2013 / Astoria Neighborhood / Healthcare in Queens / Queens Buzz. I just returned from the United Civic Community Association [UCCA] sponsored forum on Obamacare at the Museum of the Moving Image. The forum did a nice job of providing what appeared to be a good summary look into what the federal government’s Affordable Healthcare Act [also known as Obamacare] is really all about.

The forum was moderated by Rose Marie Poveromo, President of the United Community Civic Association of Astoria and included a panel of experts. The panel included U.S. Congressman Joseph Crowley, Rebecca Jackson, a NY State of Health Project Coordinator, Caryn Schwab Executive Director of Mount Sinai Queens, Judy Trilivas Chief Operating Officer of Mount Sinai Queens and Minna Elias Congresswoman Maloney’s Chief of Staff. They are shown seated from left to right in the photo above, at the UCCA hosted Obamacare Forum at the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria.

Click here to read more about Affordable Care / Obamacare comes to Queens.



Health Fair: Keeping The Machine Going

health fairs in queensJune 4, 2013 / Jackson Heights Neighborhood / Queens Healthcare / Queens Buzz. I attended a Health Fair in Jackson Heights on Saturday at the Lexington School for the Deaf. It was held outside in the playground, which was a large grassy field not far from the Bulova Building.

Inside the yard there were booth set up where you could have your lungs tested for things like asthma, have your heart rate and blood pressure measured, get a bone density reading to see if you're at risk of osteoporosis, have your glucose and cholesterol measured, and get a body mass index reading - all for free. For those folks who are managing their health without the benefit of insurance, it's a good one stop shop to get some sort of reading on a number of your vitals.

There were other, less health focused booths there too. For example a couple of booths provided coffee, bagels and fruit - like the Port Authority of NY / NJ and the NYC Department of Corrections. And some were set up to entertain the kids with balloons, dancing to music, yoga and the like. The event is hosted annually by Mt Sinai Queens and the United Civic Community Association. We'll post more later.


Chef Rocco Sacramone of Trattoria L'incontro & Mount Sinai / UCCA Event | Astoria restaurants restaurants in Astoria NY Queens Italian Greek Albanian Egyptian seafood restaurants in Astoria Queens NY
Chef Rocco Sacramone of Trattoria L'incontro & Mount Sinai / UCCA Event

Queens Food Fusion

Nutrition & Sumptuous Cuisine in Queens

March 6, 2013 / Food in Queens / Astoria / Queens Buzz. I attended a nutritious cooking class on February 27th featuring Rocco Sacramone, head Chef and Founder, of Trattoria L’incontro of Astoria; working in tandem with Effie Nerantzis, a Registered Dietician, from Mount Sinai Queens. The event was hosted by the United Community Civic Association at the Central Sushi Bar and Lounge in Astoria. And the program was sponsored by Mount Sinai Queens as part of their community health education outreach efforts, some of which we've covered in the past [see Queens healthcare section]. This particular program was intended to demonstrate how to prepare great tasting foods that are healthy and admission was free.

I knew going into this event that it had been fully booked. So I wasn’t surprised as I entered a banquet room, which was fully seated. Rocco and Effie were conversing off stage; while Shelly Felder, Sr Director of Marketing & Communications at Mount Sinai Queens, conversed with Rose Marie Poveromo, President of the United Community Civic Association. The show was about to begin.

Click here for our report, including recipes and slide show with photos of Chef Rocco Sacramone of Trattoria L’incontro preparing heart healthy foods.



Eating Right in Queens in the New Year

mt sinai nutritionDecember 14, 2012 / Astoria & LIC / Food in Queens / Queens Buzz. I attended a lecture on nutrition sponsored by Mount Sinai Hospital of Astoria at the LIC YMCA. The presentation was given by Effie Nerantzis, Registered Dietician, who is shown in the photo to your left.

She provided a lot of information that one can use to begin to make smart, healthy choices in their diet, while continuing to lead an on-the-go modern lifestyle. Some of the lecture including how to read nutrition labels on the backs of packages, how to interpret the claims on the front of food packages, she touched on how organic foods factor into the mix, and how to shop and prepare foods in short order.


Doctors in Queens Astoria LIC & Sunnyside | doctors in lic astoria sunnyside long island city queens doctors
Doctors in Queens Astoria LIC & Sunnyside

Finding Dr. Right - Doctors in Queens

Doctors and Healthcare in LIC, Astoria, Sunnyside, Woodside & Queens

February / Long Island City / Queens Buzz. I attended a community lecture put on by Mount Sinai Queens entitled Finding Doctor Right. It was hosted at the Avalon Riverview, which is located down on 2-01 50th Avenue near the East River in LIC.

When I arrived, I took note of the audience demographics which had a female / male skew of about two to one; and the ages ranged from starting a family to planning retirement. Our speaker was Dr. Nierman, VP of Medical Affairs and Chief Medical Officer, and one of the people responsible for hiring doctors at Mount Sinai Queens.

Click here to read our report and view photos about finding Dr. Right – doctors and healthcare in LIC and Queens.



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Dentists In Queens

Dentists In Queens

Long Island City LIC / Queens Buzz. This is a report about dental care in Queens, including Astoria, LIC, Long Island City, Sunnyside, Woodside, Jackson Heights, Corona, Flushing and Jamaica. This report talks about the dentists, dental conditions and dental hygiene and hygienists.  The photo is of a tooth model created in preparation for a tooth cap.

Click here to read our report about Dentists in Queens.



Chiropractors In Queens | chiropractors in queens lic long island city chiropractic care long island city queens lic
Chiropractors In Queens

Chiropractors In Queens

Back Pain Doctors & Neck Pain Doctors in LIC, Astoria & Queens

Long Island City LIC / Queens Buzz. This is a report about chiropractic care in Queens, including Astoria, LIC, Long Island City, Sunnyside, Woodside, Jackson Heights, Corona, Flushing and Jamaica. This report talks about the chiropractic care, its origins and related bodily care and health.  The photo is of a chart created by Thomas W. Myers and published by Churchill Livingstone.

Click here to read our report about Chiropractic Care In Queens and for back pain doctors & neck pain doctors in LIC, Astoria & Queens.





Ophthalmologists, Optometrists & Opticians In Queens | opthamologists ophthamologists opthamologists eye doctors optometrists opticians queens ny sunnyside astoria lic long island city jackson heights corona
Ophthalmologists, Optometrists & Opticians In Queens

Ophthalmologists In Queens

The Treatment Of Eye Conditions In Queens

March 2017 / Astoria Queens NY / Queens Buzz. This is a general overview of eye care and eyewear. This report is designed to orient you to different kinds of professionals accessible in Queens in the eye care and eyewear professions. As well as to highlight several widespread eye conditions in Queens as well as the rest of the U.S..  Click here to view our report on ophthalmologists, optometrists and opticians in Queens.



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Elmhurst Hospital - Queens

Elmhurst Hospital - Jackson Heights

April 19, 2010 / Elmhurst & Jackson Heights / Queens Buzz. I arranged to conduct an interview and take a tour of the Elmhurst Hospital in Queens. The hospital’s Associate Executive Director of External Affairs, Dario Centorcelli made time in his schedule to accommodate my visit. I arrived mid morning and we immediately struck up a lively dialogue about Elmhurst and Queens hospitals which would last past lunchtime. During that time I found Dario had a near encyclopedic mind about the hospitals in Queens. In the photo to your left you see surgery being performed at Elmhurst Hospital in Queens.

Click here to read the rest of the story including numerous photos and a slide show of Elmhurst Hospital in Queens NY.



Hot Yoga and Yoga Classes In Astoria LIC Queens | the yoga room yoga classes in astoria lic long island city yoga in queens yoga classes in queens hot yoga vinyasa yoga lic long island city astoria
Hot Yoga and Yoga Classes In Astoria LIC Queens

Yoga In Astoria & LIC Queens

The Yoga Room - Hot & Other Yoga Options In Queens

LIC / Long Island City & Astoria January 2, 2010. I started this story in September when I dropped in on the Yoga Room in LIC and met owner / founder Zhana who was busily working to finish her new studio in Astoria. She took a break from a myriad of commitments to introduce me to the facilities at The Yoga Room LIC studio [see photo].

Click here to read our report about taking one of the Yoga Room's hot yoga classes in Queens.

Spas In Sunnyside - Pure Spa & Angel Spa Astoria | spas in queens beauty treatments in queens angel spa astoria pure spa sunnyside spas in Astoria spas in Sunnyside
Spas In Sunnyside - Pure Spa & Angel Spa Astoria

Beauty Spas In Sunnyside & Astoria

Updated 2017 / December 2009 / Sunnyside & Astoria / Sunnyside Shops.  

Angel Spa in Astoria CLOSED in late 2012.  In 2015 Pure Spa relocated into the CityView Raquet Club in LIC.

This is a report about Angel Spa in Astoria and Pure Spa in Sunnyside. These spas provide manicures, pedicures, facials, massages and more.

Click here to read our report about a couple of Beauty spas in LIC, Astoria & Sunnyside.



Organic Food Stores - LIC & Queens | organic food stores queens long island city astoria sunnyside woodside jackson heights all natural food stores organic produce long island city organic food queens
Organic Food Stores - LIC & Queens

Organic Food / Supermarkets In Queens

Long Island City LIC / Queens Buzz. This is a report about organic, all natural food and locally produced food in Queens. This report includes coverage of what constitutes organic and why it has important health implications.

This report also includes a bit of the history of organic food and how organic and all natural foods are making their way into Queens in a big way. Click here to read our report about organic food / all natural food in Queens.




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