Posts tagged with "Health insurance"

Vaughn Lowery illustration by Allison Christensen for his book Move Like Water x Be Fluid produced by 360 MAGAZINE

Move Like Water × Be Fluid

By Katrina Tiktinsky

Vaughn Lowery, founder and publisher of 360 MAGAZINE, is set to release his first book this month. Move Like Water × Be Fluid is a stunning memoir documenting the author’s journey from a childhood in the Detroit’s subsidized, section 8 housing to a successful career in fashion and media. The arc of this remarkable passage twists and turns in surprising ways, ensuring readers will believe in the concept that this life truly is what you make it. The text will debut as an exclusive multi-volume installation within 360 MAGAZINE and marks the inception of the brand’s foray into publishing.

This provocative coming-of-age story explores the power of branding strategy, a technique the writer developed at an early age and carried with him throughout his lifetime. Lowery, from the time he was a young child, is able to comprehend that one’s innate, individual self is their greatest commodity in life. Through the highs and lows that inform his experience, he stays true to that ideal. Lowery puts forward a raw and compelling narrative of a child, and later a man, who repeatedly picks himself up, reimagines his life, and finds innovative ways to move forward. The self-empowerment so emblematic in Lowery’s character and story promotes readers to adopt the author’s tactics in their own lives.

The influence of prominent civil rights leader Joseph Lowery, the writer’s grandfather, is prevalent in this work. A beacon for both hope and progress during the Civil Rights Movement, the legacy of Joseph Lowery weighs heavily on the narrator. This, along with his upbringing and existence as a black man in America, make Lowery both introspective and contextually aware when it comes to race. Moreover, draws parallels between the movement his grandfather championed and led, and the Black Lives Matter movement of today, exposing the failures of our system and calling for meaningful, systemic change. Both Joseph and Vaughn Lowery are members of the first intercollegiate historically African American organization Alpha Phi Alpha. Lowery simultaneously considers the work he can do, as a singular human being, to forward social justice causes in his day-to-day life and interactions with others. 

In 1920, his grandmother, Agnes Christine Moore Lowery (the little girl in the blue dress, also a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha), came with her grandmother to become the first black to vote in Tennessee. The kids’ book, The Big Day, depicts their journey the day she voted, now available on Amazon here.

Photo of LaJUNE by Armon Hayes for 360 Magazine

Photo: Armon Hayes, Talent: LaJUNE

360 Magazine is also now selling one of a kind home goods via Chairish, a curated marketplace for the best in vintage and contemporary furniture, decor and art. Check out this piece designed by 360’s founder Vaughn Lowery.

In the year 2020, which has been afflicted with an overwhelming amount of change, there has never been a timelier moment for insight from a man like Lowery. As mentioned, Lowery’s deep ties and connections to racial justice in America feels incredibly relevant, as do his thoughts on digital media, something Lowery pioneered years before COVID-19 forced the world hurriedly online. Constantly at the forefront of social change, Move Like Water × Be Fluid offers an understanding of the current moment, yet looks forward to the possibility of an evolved, cosmopolitan world. One that Lowery aspires to through all his works, including this installation and 360 MAGAZINE.

As we follow the author through grade school, high school and on through Cornell University, we collect advice from a myriad of powerful secondary characters. From all walks of life, these secondary support systems offer Lowery the push he needs to continue on striving towards something better. We watch Lowery model the work ethic of his admired older sister, gain confidence from an encouraging teacher, change the trajectory of his life due to a neighborhood mentor, and learn from the critique of a Residential Advisor. This self-help-book stands apart for never failing to appreciate the importance of an individual’s support system. Fittingly, while the book catalogues Lowery’s journey to success, it inspires and encourages readers in the same way Lowery’s community uplifted him – to take action towards a meaningful life.

Comparable titles to Move Like Water × Be Fluid include other stories of individuals who later turned to publishing their experiences in self-help books. Numerous celebrity examples include Becoming by Michelle Obama, Shoe Dog by Phil Knight, or The Path Made Clear by Oprah Winfrey. These titles, as well as Lowery’s first book, all feature introspection and explanations regarding the course of the authors’ lives. 

The following descriptions outlines the chapter-by-chapter journey within Move Like Water × Be Fluid.

Chapter 1: The beginning of Lowery’s journey is marked by his complicated childhood in Detroit, distinctly connected to his sense of place and community. Financial struggles and surroundings reminiscent of the song “Gangsta’s Paradise,” as well as the author’s early experience with assault contextualize the course of Lowery’s life.

Chapter 2: A childhood mood, coupled with the realization of his intelligence, swiftly changed the direction of Lowery’s life. Following a move to New Jersey to live with his older sister, Lowery’s early experiences of racism shine a light on his passion for racial justice today. The opportunity to participate in an honored education program again changes the trajectory Lowery follows.

Chapter 3: This chapter offers insight into the ups and downs of high school, a narrative many are familiar with. Yet, Lowery’s poised observations throughout the chapter reflect his early understanding of the world.

Chapter 4: After a remarkable yet complex journey through high school, Lowery achieves the first of many dreams by gaining the chance to attend Cornell University in New York. At Cornell, he is able to expand his understanding of self and what he hopes to accomplish.

Chapter 5: Saks Fifth Avenue recruits Lowery to work in their corporate office, marking Lowery’s first foray into the world of economics and fashion. The advice he gains from mentors in the field prompts him to shift towards a career in acting and modeling, supplemented by working in the Medicare Department of U.S. Healthcare.

Chapter 6: New York, in all its hectic nature, pointed Lowery west towards California where he could further capitalize on his talents in the entertainment industry.

Chapter 7: This chapter details one of the events in Lowery’s life for which he is best known: his commercials as “Joe Boxer Guy” that overwhelmed the nation. Following ups and downs in Los Angeles, this success cemented Lowery’s understanding of his own talents as well as his ties to L.A.

Chapter 8: Following an offensive home invasion, Lowery pivots to continue embracing what life throws at him with appearances on NBC’s “Scrubs” and “America’s Next Top Model.”

Chapter 9: With plenty of capital and the space to complement his next steps, Lowery founded 360 MAGAZINE in 2008, powering through the tidal wave that was the recession all due to his own brains and the belief in his product and brand.

Chapter 10: After another painful reminder of the inadequacies of the justice system in America due to an unjust prison stay, Lowery’s comprehension of what is truly important is once again realigned. Despite his negative experiences, his magazine is able to be on the cutting edge of the Los Angeles scene.

Chapter 11: The number 360 is ubiquitous to Lowery – one embodies the other. His appreciation for both his own capabilities and expertise, as well as the ones of others, assures his magazine and brand are constantly evolving. 

Chapter 12: Thinking on the future following the tragic death of a friend, Lowery is nowhere near finished and is more than ready to continue is many metamorphoses. He now exists in a space where he strives to empower others, all around the world. 360.

Move Like Water x Be Fluid, by Vaughn Lowery, is available this month exclusively on the 360 MAGAZINE’s website. 360 MAGAZINE has received numerous accolades, and has recently been featured on Dancing with the Stars. Stay in touch by following both Lowery (@vaughnlowery) and 360 (@360magazine)

Additionally Vaughn has an audio book titled, “Say Uncle: The Story of Vaughn Lowery” which loosely based on his childhood. It is available for here on Amazon Music. For additional info on Vaughn Lowery visit Wikipedia and IMDb.

Move Like Water x Be Fluid hard jacket on Blurb.

Move Like Water x Be Fluid is available in hard copy format at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Google Books and Target.

Move Like Water x Be Fluid audio book available on Audible.

Signed copies of Vaughn’s memoir,  Move Like Water × Be Fluid, are available in our shop.

relationship illustration by Rita Azar for 360 Magazine

Insurance for Valentine’s Day Let-Downs

Survey shows percentage of those suffering Valentine let-downs, finds women caught cheating more often than men, and more.

The leading online resource for health, auto, home and life insurance for more than 20 years, Insurance, recently surveyed 2,000 individuals to determine how frequently Valentine’s Day disasters occur. The good news: most (83%) report escaping relationship drama around the holiday. But, for those who endure heartache, finding highlights include:

  • 27% broke up with someone
  • 20% had a serious argument
  • 65% of men caught partner cheating (vs. 35% of women discovering an unfaithful partner)
  • 52% of men initiate break ups (vs. 48% of women calling it quits)

The complete survey results are available: 5 heartbreaking scenarios—insurance after divorce.

“It’s understandable that insurance may not be top of mind when going through a stressful break up or divorce,” acknowledges Michelle Megna, editorial director for Insurance. “But failing to assess life, homeowners, auto and home insurance can be costly. Our guide makes it easy for people to understand where they may be exposed to financial risks so they can efficiently make any necessary insurance coverage changes.”

Insurance checklist during divorce

Life insurance: Consider changing the beneficiary or setting up a life insurance trust for the benefit of any children.

Home insurance: Ensure the correct name is on the policy and/or secure renters insurance if moving out of a shared home. The guide explains what to do if homeowners are underwater on their mortgage and/or leaving a home unoccupied.

Auto insurance: It is possible to stay on the same auto insurance policy until car ownership is determined. But, assess your estranged spouse’s driving habits, speeding tickets and/or accidents. It may be more cost-effective to separate your auto coverage before finalizing a divorce.

Health insurance: If an individual wants to remain on a former spouse’s health plan after divorce, it may be possible to obtain COBRA coverage for up to 36 months. COBRA is generally a high-cost option and it may be more cost effective to purchase an individual high-deductible health plan.

The report includes an interactive map showing divorce and marriage rates by state, along with their differences from national averages.

Megna is available to elaborate on break up survey findings and answer questions about how people can best assess any insurance coverage changes that may be important in the wake of divorce.

About Insurance.com

Insurance is owned and operated by QuinStreet, Inc. (Nasdaq: QNST), a leader in providing performance marketplace technologies and services to the financial services and home services industries. QuinStreet is a pioneer in delivering online marketplace solutions to match searchers with brands in digital media. The company is committed to providing consumers with the information and tools they need to research, find and select the products and brands that meet their needs.  Insurance.com is a member of the company’s expert research and publishing division.

Insurance.com is a trusted online resource dedicated to educating consumers on auto, home, health and life insurance, developing relationships directly with carriers to offer consumers comparison rates from multiple companies. Since 2001, Insurance.com’s industry-first online tools, data-based reporting and experienced experts have helped consumers make informed insurance-related decisions, so they can choose the right insurance for their individual needs.

3 Great Ways to Stay Mentally and Physically Healthy After Retiring

When you retire, your whole life changes. Or, at least that’s how it feels. For most of us, our careers are a huge part of our entire identity, and you will probably feel a lot different once you hang it up.

That can be good and bad. For some, it is fully and undeniably a great feeling on day one. A dream come true. For others, the transition is difficult. And that can lead to some negative effects — both mentally and physically.

The best way to make sure you can adapt quickly and avoid any severe downside is by staying active and staying healthy. The more you can do to remain physically, mentally, and emotionally fit, the better it all will go.
The following represent three great ways to maintain your physical and mental health after retiring.

1. Pick Up Something New

By the time you hit retirement age, you are probably pretty set in your ways. The last thing that might seem like a good idea is even more change. But it really can help. It doesn’t have to be something major. Replacing the hours you normally spend at work with something else, however, will do you a lot of good. Join a new club, pick up a new hobby, or get involved in your community in a new way. It can really help you adjust — you won’t be just losing something but adding something as well.

2. Embrace the Water

One of the difficult parts about getting older is that it’s harder to exercise and stay in shape. Even people who have always been fit and love to run or play sports have trouble maintaining their routines because it can be so hard on the joints. The solution? Jump in the pool! There’s a reason that even pro athletes rehab in the water. You can continue using you body and strengthening your muscles — plus your lungs and heart — without risking injury.

3. Get Top Coverage

Of course, no matter how fit you stay, there will always be some health concerns. That’s just inevitable as people age. So you need to make sure you have the best possible healthcare coverage. For most seniors, this means going with some type of Medicare Advantage plan. This allows you to expand upon the coverage of the traditional program at a very affordable rate. There are many different types, but it’s hard to go wrong with a Medicare Advantage PPO plan that includes benefits that Original Medicare doesn’t. Make sure you have access to all the medical care you need.

Staying Mentally and Physically Fit

After you retire, there will be an adjustment period. But you can minimize the negative parts of this transition by implementing the right strategies. The goal for everything should be staying healthy — and improving your health. 

After all, you don’t have to grind away at a 9-to-5 anymore. You might even be able to strengthen your body and sharpen your mind with more free time and more energy to devote to yourself.

Start by replacing your work hours with some new hobbies. Stay fit with low-impact activities like swimming. And make sure you have the best healthcare coverage possible. This alone will help so much. You can embrace retirement head on and start loving your life more and more every day.

Mina Tocalini, 360 Magazine, Insurance Bill

Price Transparency Essential to Patient Empowerment

Independent Women’s Voice (IWV) applauds the introduction of the “PRICE Transparency Act” today by Senator Mike Braun. The “PRICE Transparency Act” would require hospitals and insurers to reveal prices for care to patients beforehand, allowing consumers to make informed, price-conscious decisions for themselves and their loved ones. 

While price transparency was important before the coronavirus, in the aftermath of the economic troubles caused by the pandemic, it is a crucial first step towards a competitive healthcare marketplace that empowers patients, expands access to quality care, and drives prices down.

IWV Policy Director Hadley Heath Manning issued the following statement: 

“Americans would never buy other goods or services without a price upfront. Non-emergency health care, which is over 90 percent of healthcare spending, should be no different. With transparent pricing, Americans can plan ahead or shop and compare prices and reviews from a variety of healthcare providers in order to find the best value. Price transparency measures have proven to reduce prices for all patients, not just aggressive shoppers. That’s the power of competition at work!

“President Trump has taken bold steps to fight for patients to have healthcare price transparency. But we know executive actions only go so far; they could easily be undone by a future administration controlled by healthcare industry cronies. That’s why the work of lawmakers like Sen. Braun is so important. Codifying these measures will help to ensure that price transparency is the law of the land and that this sunlight won’t set with any changing of White House control. 

“American patients deserve that security, and they deserve the accountability and affordability in health care that transparency will bring. ” 

Independent Women’s Voice has been a leading voice championing healthcare price transparency. IWV’s nationwide advocacy campaign has driven thousands of public comments in support of price transparency to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. 

Independent Women’s Voice fights for women and families by effectively expanding support among women, independents, and millennials for policy solutions that aren’t just well intended, but actually enhance people’s freedom, opportunities and well-being.

Follow Independent Women’s Voice: Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | YouTube

sara sandman, 360 MAGAZINE, business, tech, illustration

What Does Medicare Plan F Exactly Cover?

Medicare parts and plans are almost always mistaken for one another. There are only four main Medicare parts which are Parts A, B, C, and D. These parts offer hospital coverage, outpatient services, and prescription drug coverage. Part C, on the other hand, is considered to be an alternative solution for the original parts along with other services that aren’t usually covered in Part A and B such as vision and dental care.

Other than the Medicare main parts, there are other available plans to purchase as an added help to your Original Medicare such as Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans. However, they only work alongside your Original Medicare. That’s why enrolling firstly in Original Medicare is one of the most important requirements to be able to qualify for any Medicare plan. Different Medigap policies are sold across all states, including Plan F which is considered to be one of the most extended-coverage plans out there. Read on to discover more information on Plan F so you can determine whether it is a good fit for you.

What Are Medigap Policies? 

Medicare Supplement -also known as Medigap- insurance plans are essentially available to help in covering certain out-of-pocket costs that Original Medicare doesn’t cover. If you are thinking about enrolling in Medigap, especially Plan F, then you must read everything you need to know and understand what exactly this plan has to offer. It’s important to educate yourself regarding the plan you are considering to ensure it is suitable for your needs. While Medigap Plan A is mandatory to be offered by insurance companies that sell supplement insurance plans, there are other plans such as C and F that are sold upon the desire of every consumer.

What Is Medicare Supplement Insurance Plan F?

There are ten different Medigap policies that are available. Plan F is considered to be the most comprehensive plan available in most states. People who seek broader assistance with out-of-pocket costs benefit from the extensive coverage that this plan offers. Plan F offers a great advantage for beneficiaries who often use Part A and B which is that it reduces hospital and medical expenses significantly; most of the time, you won’t need to pay for any additional costs. For these reasons, it’s only logical that premiums might be more expensive. Since this plan, and other Medigap policies, is offered by private insurance companies, it might not be available. Plan availability varies from one state to another, so it’s always a good idea to research the availability of the plan in your region. However, Plan F is highly desirable due to its extensive coverage which pushes most insurance companies to offer it.

What Are Plan F’s Presented Benefits?

Most Medigap plans are standardized across all states. This means that regardless of your location or the insurance company you choose to purchase the plan from, you will be able to get the same benefits that are offered by Plan F in any state. However, Plan F premiums may vary from one insurance company to the other. There is also another high deductible version of Plan F that is different from the original plan.

Here are some of the benefits that you get when you purchase Medigap Plan F:

•Plan F offers additional benefits that reach up to 365 days after the exhaustion of Medicare Part A benefits.

•Plan F offers Medicare Part A deductibles, copayment, and coinsurance. The difference between copay and coinsurance is that the first is a set rate you pay for hospital services you have benefited from. The latter is a percentage of the costs you pay after you have already met your deductibles. Deductibles, on the other hand, are the set amount of charges you pay for medical services before coinsurance is activated.

•It covers the excess charges that come with Part B that specializes in outpatient services and deductibles.

•It covers the cost of the first three pints of blood needed. Yet, the medical procedure must be approved and it only covers three pints of blood annually.

•Trained nursing facility coinsurance.

•It covers 80% and up to the Plan limit of emergency foreign travels.

While a Medicare advantage plan offers different Medicare benefits that aren’t usually covered such as dental and vision care, Medigap policies are considered to be an Original Medicare’s sidekick. Plan F offers coverage for most deductibles, coinsurance, and copayment for Part A; it also covers excess charges for Part B. Investing some time and effort into educating yourself on the differences between Medicare parts, plans, and policies will help in cutting costs and saving money while you are taking care of your health in the long run.

illustration, 360 MAGAZINE, Alejandra Villagra

Bernie Sanders × ESSENCE.com

In an exclusive op-ed for ESSENCE.com, Sen. Bernie Sanders explains why Black women will benefit from medicare for all. He talks to ESSENCE about:

  • AMERICA’S DYSFUNCTIONAL HEALTHCARE SYSTEM: “It is impossible for any rational person to deny that our current healthcare system is dysfunctional and cruel. As a nation, we spend more than twice as much on healthcare as the people of almost every major country on earth while achieving worse outcomes.  Even worse, Black Americans see only a fraction of those sub-par returns.  In America today, Black babies are more than twice as likely to die in infancy than babies born to white mothers, and Black women are three or four times more likely to die from pregnancy-related complications than their white peers. To change those unacceptable outcomes, it’s important to recognize that maternal health disparities don’t start at pregnancy. They start before mothers are even born…”
  • HOW THE “MEDICARE FOR ALL” BILL WILL BENEFIT BLACK MOTHERS: “In my view, any plan that targets Black maternal health that doesn’t include unequivocal support for a universal healthcare system that is free at the point of delivery is not good enough. The “Medicare For All” Bill I’ve introduced will help prevent Black mothers from being discriminated against as they’re poised to give birth — left laboring in hallways because of their perceived inability to pay. It also means that large numbers of Black Americans who live in southern, Republican-controlled states like Mississippi will no longer have to suffer because local legislators rejected President Obama’s Medicaid expansion. Medicare For All will provide long-term home health care and community-based services for everyone…”
  • HOW AFRICAN-AMERICANS ARE DISADVANTAGED BY AN EMPLOYER-BASED INSURANCE SYSTEM: “In America today, Black employment rates remain disproportionately low due to well-documented employment discrimination, unequal public education, and other systemic biases. While 65 percent of white families receive insurance through their employer, only 46 percent of Black families do, which in part explains why the uninsured rate for Black Americans is 11 percent – over 50% higher than that of white Americans…”

For more on this piece, visit ESSENCE.com

Harvard & Texas A&M

I write to inform you of my dismay over recent actions by Harvard faculty Dr. Walter Willett and Dr. Frank Hu and their associates, Dr. David Katz and the True Health Initiative (THI). Their actions, as
described in a recent JAMA article here
are unethical, distort the results of important scientific research, and, in our opinion, are false and harmful to Texas A&M University and its faculty. These are serious matters that undermine the values espoused by your institution and must be corrected immediately. 

I trust you were as surprised as I was after reading the JAMA article and ask that you take a look at the outrageous actions by THI. JAMA found that THI and several of its council members, including Harvard faculty Dr. Willett and Dr. Hu, mischaracterized scientific research
and falsely accused Texas A&M scientists of selling out to industry interests. According to JAMA, THI not only broke journal embargo policy but apparently used automated bots to flood the email inbox of the Editor in Chief of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Several of your faculty are involved as council members or advisers of THI and collaborated with THI in their effort to discredit scientific evidence that runs contrary to their ideology. I can assure you that Texas A&M’s research is driven by science. Period.

In addition to my concern about JAMA findings, I am attaching an illustration
Dr. Willett presented at a cardiology conference to attack a distinguished Texas A&M professor and the university itself as being influenced by industry. This unsubstantiated claim has been independently rejected and shown to be false in the JAMA article.

At this time, we have no hard basis to show that these actions against Texas A&M and its faculty are endorsed or condoned by your institution, and we hope we can work together to resolve this problem. Such
resolution should include a serious assessment by Harvard of its affiliation with THI and a comprehensive ethical review into any Harvard faculty involved with THI. Several scientists have severed ties with THI because of the issues discussed in this letter. Texas A&M applauds the stand taken by these scientists and encourages Harvard to show the same courage.


Texas A&M asks that Harvard join us for a purely scientific approach to nutrition for the sake of public health and public trust and reject the politics and unethical actions of THI that have sought to discredit science and interfere in the scientific process.