If you’ve already gone through the Medicare-sponsored resources to get help with your plan and need more help or information you might want to try out some of these organizations next. While there may be other local organizations in your area to help you, listed below are the top three most useful ones that are available to everyone.
State Health Insurance Program (SHIP)
The State Health Insurance Program, or SHIP is a program that provides state-specific training and counseling to Medicare-eligible individuals and their families and caregivers. SHIP personnel can help answer questions related to enrollment, coverage, costs, appeals, and more. Their website also features relevant blogs and news stories. To find your local SHIP office you can use the ‘SHIP Locator’ on their website. After selecting which state you are in you will be provided with your state’s SHIP website and phone number. Your local SHIP website will be able to provide you with state and local resources.
Aunt Bertha is an organization that uses social care technology to connect users with local resources for financial assistance, healthcare, food, and other social services. To use the website you will need to visit https://www.findhelp.org/ and follow the prompts. The website will lead you through a series of questions to determine what kind of services you are looking for and what’s available in your area. After completing your search the website will list the various organizations who provide that kind of support. You can also view a map to see your distance from each of the organizations.
National Council of Aging
The National Council of Aging’s mission is to help create a society in which we all age with dignity, purpose, and security. Along these lines it has a large library of educational resources and articles, including ones on helping to pay for Medicare. In addition to its educational content, the NCOA also offers a search option to find help near you. To use the search option you will need to visit this link and enter your zip code.
One of the best ways to get questions answered about your Medicare plan is to ask your plan directly. Your plan should have a website where you can create an account. Most plan websites allow you to see your plan’s benefits, your list of medications, your providers, and any claims you may have. It will also likely have a section where you can ask questions about your plan or will have a phone number listed for you to call for help.
If you’re looking for financial assistance to help pay some of your plan’s costs, Medicare has programs that assist individuals with limited income and resources. Read more about those programs here.