Altoona, Pennsylvania woman recognized for her inspirational journey after a dementia diagnosis
NASHVILLE, Tenn. , July 17, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- SilverSneakers ® by Tivity Health®, the nation's leading community fitness program for older Americans, announced today the national winner of its 19th annual SilverSneakers Member of the Year Award. The award honors a SilverSneakers member who inspires and motivates other seniors through health, physical activity, and community.
"Rita's uplifting health journey is a powerful reminder that we can reach new fitness goals, no matter the challenge."
This year's recipient is Rita Yetsko, 87, from Altoona, PA. Rita was recognized for her motivating health transformation and embodiment of wellness through movement and social engagement.
After being diagnosed with dementia in 2021, Rita's health and mental capabilities steadily began to decline. The doctor's recommendations for what could slow the progress of the disease were diet, exercise, and socialization. After some coaxing from her daughters, Rita began attending SilverSneakers classes, and her progress has been astonishing. She is back to the vibrant and fun-loving person her daughters remember. Rita is now eager to go to her SilverSneakers classes and is an inspiration to anyone who tries to keep up with her. She attends SilverSneakers classes at the Groove Fitness Studio in Altoona, as a free benefit through Aetna®, her Medicare Advantage plan.
"Rita's uplifting health journey is a powerful reminder that we can set and reach new health and fitness goals, no matter the challenge," said Caroline Khalil, Chief Operating Officer, Tivity Health. "Her story and the hundreds of Member of the Year nominations we received illustrate the significant impact SilverSneakers has not only on our members but their families. We are honored to provide our SilverSneakers members a continued pathway for a long and independent lifestyle of health and wellness."
Since Rita began attending SilverSneakers classes, she has blossomed and is a social butterfly with her SilverSneakers friends who look forward to seeing her. She is a champion for them and her community. Rita attends SilverSneakers class with her family, and an unexpected benefit is that one of her daughters, Terry, who has a severe intellectual disability, loves attending classes with her mom. Rita will be 88 this fall, and not slowing down anytime soon.
"Congratulations to our Medicare Advantage member Rita for her amazing achievements and inspirational story," said Terri Swanson, president of Medicare for Aetna, a CVS Health® company. "We are honored to partner with Rita on her incredible wellness journey and wish her continued good health and happiness."
Rita will be honored alongside nine other SilverSneakers members who were selected as finalists for the award. A public online vote determined the national winner. Read more about the SilverSneakers Member of the Year winner and finalists: SilverSneakers.com/MOYAward .
SilverSneakers offers members a network of up to 22,000 fitness locations, along with community-based options such as rec centers and parks. Members can take part in live, instructor-led and on-demand virtual classes in a variety of lengths and formats that include strength training, cardio, meditation and stress management, always bringing more to the member.
Currently, nearly 18 million Americans are eligible for SilverSneakers at no additional cost to the member through select Medicare Advantage, group retiree, and Medicare Supplement plans. SilverSneakers members can use their membership for access to multiple locations and use the SilverSneakers® GO mobile app, to enable them to be active wherever and whenever they choose to work out.
SilverSneakers®, by Tivity Health, is the nation's leading community fitness program for Medicare-eligible Americans. The program was founded in 1992 and is available to about 18 million Americans through many Medicare Advantage plans, Medicare Supplement carriers, and group retiree plans. For more information, to check eligibility to enroll in the program or sign up for a SilverSneakers newsletter, go to silversneakers.com.
About Tivity Health
Tivity Health® Inc. is a leading provider of healthy life-changing solutions, including SilverSneakers®, Burnalong®, Prime® Fitness and WholeHealth Living®. We help adults improve their health and support them on life's journey by providing access to in-person and virtual physical activity, social, and mental enrichment, condition-specific programming, as well as a full suite of physical medicine and integrative health services. We continue to enhance the way we direct members along their journey to better health by delivering an insights-driven, personalized, interactive experience. Our suite of services supports health plans, employers, hospital systems and others nationwide as they seek to reduce costs and create healthier communities. At Tivity Health, we deliver the resources needed to live healthier, happier, more connected lives. Learn more at www.tivityhealth.com.
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SOURCE Tivity Health, Inc.