‘Silver Slippers’ not welcome in new fitness center

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We recently received a letter from Piedmont Fayette Hospital informing us they will no longer honor the “Silver Sneakers” fitness program for seniors at their new fitness center located at Pinewood. They will be closing the current location across from the hospital.

Their stated reason is “since it is a medically-integrated facility they must meet certain standards set by a Medical Fitness Association” and Silver Sneakers does not meet those standards.

If the insurance companies did not think the Sneakers program benefited the health of older people they would not fund it; insurance companies are not known for their generosity.

It appears to me this is a thinly veiled attempt to discourage the retirees from cluttering up the new facility which is obviously being built to cater to the Pinewood residents.

I understand they will have “aquatic” classes and individualized training programs, etc., and they are expensive. These could be offered at a premium if one wished to participate. Most of the retirees I have observed have a set exercise program they accomplish during their visits which do not require any individualized instruction.

It makes no sense that these programs cannot coexist at the new facility except for the reason I stated above. It was appropriate that nowhere in the letter was Piedmont Fayette referred to as the “Community” hospital since they are no longer that type facility.

John Fish

Fayetteville, Ga.