State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)

The State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP or SHIIP) is a federally funded state program that has been providing free, local, one-on-one and sometime face-to-face medicare and health insurance counseling to Medicare Seniors. SHIP may have many different acronyms such as SHIIP, SHINE, HICAP, SHIBA, SHICK, but they all provide the same service. Remember if you are eligible for Medicare you are eligible for free counseling with SHIP. Please select your state below:

Alabama SHIP
State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)
www.adss.alabama.gov/ship.cfm
For more information, contact the SHIP in your area by calling 1-800-Ageline (1-800-243-5463).

SHIP coordinators and a crew of insurance counselors are eager to assist you in making informed choices about your insurance. SHIP counselors are committed volunteers – many of whom face the same issues you do as Medicare beneficiaries. They will provide you with information that will help you make informed choices for yourself regarding your insurance benefits. The counselors are not affiliated with any insurance companies and will not attempt to sell you insurance. All counseling records are strictly confidential. SHIP is a partnership with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the Alabama Department of Senior Services and the Area Agencies on Aging.

Alaska SHIP
State Health Insurance Assistance Programs (SHIP) and Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP)

dhss.alaska.gov/dsds/Pages/medicare/default.aspx

Questions? Contact us:
In Anchorage: 907-269-3680
Toll–free within Alaska:800-478-6065
TTY: 800-770-8973 hss.medicare@alaska.gov

SHIP funds personalized counseling, education and outreach to Medicare beneficiaries and their families. This allows people to better understand and utilize their Medicare benefits. SHIP is a program of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) cms.gov.

SMP funds education for Medicare beneficiaries and others on how to spot and report potential Medicare errors, fraud, waste and abuse. SMP is a program of the Administration for Community Living (ACL).

Arizona SHIP
Arizona Division of Aging And Adult Services (DAAS)
State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)
www.azdes.gov/daas/ship

SHIP Hotline: (800) 432-4040
(Leave a message and we will call you back!)

A free health benefits counseling service for Medicare beneficiaries and their families or caregivers. Our mission is to educate, advocate, counsel and empower people to make informed benefit decisions. SHIP is an independent program funded by federal agencies and is not affiliated with the insurance industry.

This program is a partnership of the Department of Economic Security, Division of Aging and Adult Services and Arizona’s Area Agencies on Aging.

Arkansas SHIIP
Arkansas Senior Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP)

www.insurance.arkansas.gov/Seniors/divpage.htm

t: 800-224-6330 or 501-371-2782 f: 501-371-2781

What is SHIIP? The Senior Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP) provides free one-on- one counseling, education and information to individuals with Medicare of all ages. SHIIP assists with applications for Medicare subsidy programs like Medicare Savings Program and Extra Help, recruits and trains a volunteer network throughout the state to provide in-person information, assistance, and presentations, as well as help at community events and health fairs.

California HICAP
California Department of Aging’s Health Insurance Counseling and Advocacy Program (HICAP)
www.aging.ca.gov/hicap/default.aspx

Call a Local HICAP Office Toll-Free
1-800-434-0222

The California Department of Aging’s Health Insurance Counseling and Advocacy Program (HICAP) provides personalized counseling, community education and outreach events for Medicare beneficiaries. HICAP is the primary local source for accurate and objective information and assistance with Medicare benefits, prescription drug plans and health plans.

California HICAP is part of a national network of State Health Insurance and Assistance Programs (SHIP). SHIP is a Federal grant program that helps States enhance and support a network of local programs, staff, and volunteers. Local programs are charged with directly helping beneficiaries to understand how to use their Medicare benefits including Prescription Drug Plan coverage, Medicare Advantage plans, Medicare supplemental policies, Medicare Savings Programs, and long term care insurance. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) administers the SHIP grant programs nationally.

HICAP provides free community education and unbiased confidential individual counseling statewide. HICAP Counselors are trained to assist you with choosing and/or enrolling in Prescription Drug Plans and Medicare Health Plans, filing original Medicare and private insurance claims and/or preparing Medicare appeals. If you are considering purchasing long-term care insurance or Medicare supplement insurance, HICAP Counselors can help you compare policies and explain what services each policy provides. Click on the box for more information.

Colorado SHIP
State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) in Colorado

cdn.colorado.gov/cs/Satellite/DORA-DI/CBON/DORA/

State SHIP Office
1-888-696-7213.

The State Health Insurance Assistance Program, within the Colorado Division of Insurance, helps people eligible for or enrolled in Medicare with questions about health insurance.

The program has counselors working through regional organizations around the state to provide: individual counseling and assistance; public education presentations about Medicare, related health insurance, and Medicare fraud; and distribution of printed materials about these health insurances.

Starting July 2013, Medicare is making changes to who can provide supplies to some Medicare consumers. The durable medical equipment, prosthetics, orthotics, and supplies (DMEPOS) competitive bid program will expand to include consumers who live in the Aurora, Broomfield, Colorado Springs, or Denver area, OR use diabetic supplies

Connecticut CHOICES
Connecticut’s program for Health insurance assistance, Outreach, Information and referral, Counseling, Eligibility Screening. (CHOICES)

• Call CHOICES at 1-800-994-9422 to speak with a counselor in your area

www.ct.gov/agingservices/cwp/view.asp?a=2511&q=313032

The CHOICES Program:

• Provides information to persons age 60 and older and persons with disabilities.
• Is a cooperative program of the State of Connecticut Department of Social Services, the Area Agencies on Aging, and the Center for Medicare Advocacy.
• Is comprised of both staff, in-kind professionals from local service agencies and volunteers.
• Is also known as the CT SHIP or State Health Insurance Assistance Program.
• Is funded by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the Administration on Aging through the Older Americans Act.
• Produces the following guides:

-Guide to Choosing a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan in Connecticut
-Medicare Supplemental Health Insurance (Medigap) Rate Charts

Delaware DMAB
The Delaware Medicare Assistance Bureau (DMAB)

www.delawareinsurance.gov/DMAB/

1-800-336-9500 or (302) 674-7364

The Delaware Medicare Assistance Bureau (DMAB), formerly known as ELDERinfo, provides free health insurance counseling for people with Medicare, including those under 65 years of age. You can call DMAB at 1-800-336-9500 or (302) 674-7364 to set up a free counseling session with a trained volunteer at a convenient site near you. Our goal is to empower people with Medicare to better understand their options and enable them to make the best health insurance decision for themselves.

DMAB provides counseling and assistance on questions and problems related to Medicare, Medicaid, Medigap (Medicare supplemental insurance), Medicare Part D, long-term care insurance and other types of health insurance. There is no charge for the service.

Counselors provide in-person and telephone assistance in the following general areas:

Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage Program (Medicare Part D)
Medicare supplemental insurance (Medigap Plans)
Assistance for disabled Medicare beneficiaries (under age 65)
Medicare Advantage Plans (HMOs, preferred provider organizations)
Long Term Care Insurance
Medical Assistance programs
Assistance for low-income beneficiaries
Billing problems
Volunteer counselor opportunities
Prescription Savings for those who qualify
Free community presentations and more

Florida SHINE
Florida (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders) SHINE

www.floridashine.org

Toll Free 1-800-96-ELDER
1-800-963-5337
TDD/TTY 1-800-955-8770
Fax 850-414-2150
Email information@elderaffairs.org

SHINE (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders) is a free program offered by the Florida Department of Elder Affairs and your local Area Agency on Aging. Specially trained volunteers can assist you with your Medicare, Medicaid, and health insurance questions by providing one-on-one counseling and information. SHINE services are free, unbiased, and confidential.
Our Mission

The SHINE program supports the Florida Department of Elder Affairs’ mission by providing free and unbiased health insurance counseling through a dedicated network of volunteers, empowering Florida seniors to make informed health care choices.

Georgia Cares SHIP
GeorgiaCares

www.mygeorgiacares.org
Call 1-866-552-4464 (Option 4)

GeorgiaCares is a private-public partnership, administered by the Georgia Department of Human Services (DHS) Division of Aging Services (DAS). GeorgiaCares is a volunteer-based program that provides free, unbiased and factual information and assistance to Medicare beneficiaries and their caregivers. GeorgiaCares is the State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) and SMP (formerly Senior Medicare Patrol).

Local assistance is available for health insurance related issues including Medicare, Medicaid, financial assistance programs, health error, fraud and abuse and long term care insurance. The GeorgiaCares program is statewide. Services are provided through the twelve (12) Area Agencies on Aging (AAA). For information on your local AAA, call 1-866-552-4464 (option 4).

Hawaii SHIP
Hawaii Sage PLUS Program

www.hawaiiship.org

Need assistance from a certified SHIP counselor? Call the Sage PLUS Program at 808 586-7299 or 1-888-875-9229

Aloha and welcome to the Sage PLUS Program website. We are Hawaii’s State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP), a program that offers one-to-one counseling and assistance to people with Medicare and their families. We provide free counseling and assistance via telephone calls, face to face meetings and public education presentations / programs.

Our certified volunteers may assist you with the following:

+Counseling to individuals with Medicare, and caregivers on the options and benefits available under Medicare
+Assistance in comparing and enrolling in most Medicare health and drug plans
+Present Medicare information to a group of people ( click here to request a group presentation).

Idaho SHIBA
Senior Health Insurance Benefits Advisors (SHIBA) / Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP)

www.doi.idaho.gov/shiba/shwelcome.aspx

For senior health insurance information, counseling, and assistance or to discuss volunteer opportunities, call toll free within Idaho (1-800-247-4422) or contact a SHIBA office near you.

Serving as an advocate for Idaho’s Medicare beneficiaries since 1986

We can help you put together the pieces of the senior health insurance puzzle! We will help you answer questions such as:

How do I compare Medicare prescription drug plans?
What is Medicare Advantage?
What is Medigap?
How do I get help with Medicare costs?
I’ve been considering long-term care insurance. What questions should I ask?
I can’t make sense of my Medicare statements and medical bills. What do I do next?

SHIBA is part of a network of state health insurance programs (SHIP) across the United States and its territories. In Idaho, SHIBA is funded by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the federal agency which administers the Medicare program, and the Idaho Department of Insurance.

SHIBA is a part of the Department of Insurance, Consumer Affairs, which:

Investigates claims and insurance fraud
Provides advocacy services for consumers
Provides assistance with insurance problems or questions on life, disability, long term care, property, casualty, and health insurance

We offer free and unbiased information, counseling, and assistance regarding senior health insurance. We do not sell insurance, recommend policies, agents, or specific companies. It is our goal to provide you with up-to-date and objective information to assist you in making informed buying decisions.

We are proud of our volunteers/advocates throughout Idaho who are trained on a regular basis to provide individual counseling to seniors and their caregivers. SHIBA has a strong community education and outreach component. Coordinators make educational presentations on Medicare and other senior health insurance issues to a variety of community groups. We disseminate information at hundreds of health and senior fairs throughout the State.

Illinois SHIP
Illinois Senior Health Insurance Program

www.illinois.gov/aging/ship/Pages/default.aspx

To contact SHIP, please call (800) 252-8966 or email AGING.SHIP@illinois.gov.

The Senior Health Insurance Program (SHIP), which is a free statewide health insurance counseling service for Medicare beneficiaries and their caregivers. In this section, visitors will find information and resources about applying for Medicare, sites in their area that they can get assistance applying for Medicare and tools for SHIP sites around the State to utilize in serving Medicare beneficiaries.

Indiana SHIP
www.in.gov/idoi/2500.htm

office at 1-800-452-4800

SHIP sites are located throughout the state. Visit one of your local SHIP sites in order to meet with a counselor in person, or to have questions answered by phone. Our counselors are trained volunteers who can answer questions about Medicare, Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement insurance, Medicaid, Long Term Care insurance, Prescription Coverage or Low Income Assistance. Scroll down the page to find your county, if it is not listed, then a site is not yet available where you live. You can select another county near you, or you can call our central office at 1-800-452-4800 for assistance.

Iowa SHIIP
Iowa Senior Health Insurance Information Program

www.shiip.state.ia.us/

1-800-351-4664

We are a free, confidential service of the State of Iowa that helps Iowans make informed decisions about Medicare and other health coverage. Click on any of the topics listed on the top left portion of this page and learn how SHIIP can help you.

Kansas SHICK
Senior Health Insurance Counseling for Kansas (SHICK)

www.kdads.ks.gov/shick/shick_index.html

For more information call the KDADS Senior Health Insurance Counseling for Kansas (SHICK) at
1-800-860-5260.

Senior Health Insurance Counseling for Kansas (SHICK) is a free program offering older Kansans an opportunity to talk with trained, community volunteers and get answers to questions about Medicare and other insurance issues. SHICK provides you with many resources that will help you with your struggle through the Medicare maze.

Our volunteers at SHICK know their stuff! The role of the volunteer counselor is to help people stay informed on changing conditions in health care insurance and to cut through the confusion.

Our volunteer counselors receive training on Medicare, Medicare Supplement Insurance, Long-Term Care and other health insurance subjects that concern older Kansans.

Our volunteer counselors do not work for any insurance company. The goal is to educate and assist the public to make informed decisions on what’s best for them.

Kentucky SHIP
Kentucky State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)

www.chfs.ky.gov/dail/ship.htm

Statewide toll-free number: 877-293-7447

The Kentucky State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) provides information, counseling and assistance to seniors and disabled individuals, their family members and caregivers. This service is provided at no charge by local, well-trained counselors.

The program seeks to educate the general public and Medicare beneficiaries so they are better able to make informed decisions about their health care. SHIP does not sell any health insurance products.

SHIP Goals

Educate seniors on health insurance coverage, benefits and consumer rights;
Provide assistance and education, on a one-on-one basis or through educational forums;
Protect consumers against fraud or misdirected collections; and
Empower consumers to make informed health insurance choices.

SHIP provides the following services:

One-on-one counseling by telephone or in person;
Presentations to community groups;
Printed educational and informational materials; and
Referrals (connections to other agencies).

SHIP can help you:

Understand Medicare and/or Medicaid coverage and supplemental insurance;
Understand and compare supplemental policies and plans;
Fill out prescription drug discount program applications; and
Apply for public benefits.

SHIP also works in partnership with the Kentucky Medicare Partners to provide outreach and education to people with Medicare.

Louisiana SHIIP
The Louisiana Senior Health Insurance Information Program

www.ldi.louisiana.gov/Health/SHIIP/index.html

To contact a counselor at our central office call 1-800-259-5300

The Senior Health Insurance Information Program was created to provide Medicare beneficiaries with the objective information they need to better understand Medicare coverage options, rights and benefits. SHIIP is committed to helping seniors make informed decisions by providing free and unbiased Medicare insurance counseling and assistance via telephone and face-to-face interactive sessions, public education presentations and programs, and media activities.

Maine SHIP
Maine State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)

www.maine.gov/dhhs/oes/resource/health_insurance.htm

Call 1-877-353-3771 for your local area agency on aging or:

Legal Services for the Elderly at:
Local/Out-of-State…………………………… 207-623-1797
Toll Free V/TTY………………………….. 1-800-750-5353

People in Maine who have Medicare insurance can get free health insurance counseling through the State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP). Call the Legal Services for the Elderly Hotline or your local Area Agency on Aging. Specially trained staff will answer your questions about Medicare, Medicare drug discounts, supplemental insurance, MaineCare, long-term care and other health insurance.

Maryland SHIP
Maryland Senior Health Insurance Program (SHIP)

www.aging.maryland.gov/StateHealthInsuranceProgram.html

Contact Person: Michelle Holzer, Program Manager, 410-767-1100, michelle.holzer@maryland.gov
Montgomery: 301-590-2819

Despite its name, SHIP is not an insurance program, but it is a valuable service meeting an important need of Medicare beneficiaries of any age in understanding their health insurance benefits, bills, and rights. The Maryland SHIP program provides trained staff and volunteer counselors in all 24 counties. Counselors provide in-person and telephone assistance in a variety of areas, such as: billing problems; assistance applying for help for low-income beneficiaries; assistance with denials of payment, appeals and grievances; and advice on health care fraud and abuse. SHIP counseling services are confidential and free of charge.

The State Health Insurance Program(SHIP) meets one of the most universal needs of Medicare beneficiaries, including those under 65 years of age — understanding their health insurance benefits, bills and rights. The Maryland SHIP program provides trained staff and volunteer counselors in all 24 counties. Counselors provide in-person and telephone assistance in the following general areas:

Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage Program (Medicare Part D)
Medicare supplements (Medigap Plans)
Assistance for disabled Medicare beneficiaries (under age 65)
Medicare Advantage Plans (HMOs, preferred provider organizations)
Long Term Care Insurance
Medical Assistance programs
Assistance for low-income beneficiaries
Assistance with denials, appeals and grievances
Billing problems
Health care fraud and abuse
Volunteer counselor opportunities
Free community presentations and much, much more!

The Maryland Department of Aging receives funding for this program from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the State of Maryland and local governments. SHIP counseling services are confidential and free of charge.

Most SHIP offices are open Monday through Friday during normal business hours.

Contact a local SHIP Office:

Allegany 301-777-5970 ext. 110
Anne Arundel 410-222-4464
Baltimore City 410-396-2273
Baltimore County 410-887-2059
Calvert 301-855-1170 & 410-535-4606
Caroline 410-479-2535
Carroll 410-386-3806 & 1-888-302-8978
Cecil 410-996-8169
Charles 301-934-0118 & 301-870-3388 ext 5118
Dorchester 410-376-3662 ext. 106
Frederick 301-600-1604
Garrett 301-334-9431 & 1-888-877-8403
Harford 410-638-3025
Howard 410-313-7392
Kent 410-778-2564
Montgomery 301-590-2819
Prince George’s 301-265-8471 & 301-265-8450
Queen Anne’s 410-758-0848 ext.2724
Somerset 410-742-0505 ext. 106
St. Mary’s 301-475-4200 ext. 1064
Talbot 410-822-2869
Washington 301-790-0275 ext. 208
Wicomico 410-742-0505 ext. 106
Worcester 410-742-0505 ext. 106

Massachusetts SHINE
(Serving the Health Insurance Needs of Everyone) SHINE

www.mass.gov/elders/healthcare/shine/serving-the-health-information-needs-of-elders.html

1-800-AGE-INFO (1-800-243-4636)

The SHINE Program (Serving the Health Insurance Needs of Everyone) is a state health insurance assistance program that provides free health insurance information, counseling and assistance to Massachusetts residents with Medicare and their caregivers. The SHINE Program is administered by the Massachusetts Executive Office of Elder Affairs in partnership with elder service agencies, social service and community based agencies and Councils on Aging. The program is partially funded by the federal agency Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

What is a SHINE Counselor?

A committed volunteer who is trained and certified by the Executive Office of Elder Affairs in many areas of health insurance, including Medicare Part A, Part B, and Part D; Medigap insurance, Medicare HMOs, retiree insurance plans, prescription drug programs, Medicaid, Medicare assistance programs (QMB, SLMB and QI), and other programs for people with limited resources.

How Can a SHINE Counselor Help Me?

The SHINE Program assists elders and individuals with disabilities in understanding their Medicare and MassHealth benefits and other health insurance options. The SHINE program ensures that Massachusetts residents with Medicare and their caregivers have access to accurate, unbiased and up-to-date information about their health care options.

Mississippi SHIP
The State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)

www.mdhs.state.ms.us/aas_ship.html

The State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) is a counseling program designed to answer the elderly’s questions about health insurance. Whether it is Medicare, Medicaid, supplemental insurance or other coverage, volunteers are trained to answer questions, compare policies, organize paperwork and help with claims and filing appeals.

SHIP volunteers help elderly citizens and caregivers understand Medicare benefits; organize doctor and hospital bills; file Medicare appeals; review Medicare Supplemental Insurance; evaluate Medicare+ Choice or Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) options; understand Medicaid eligibility; and explore long-term care options. For information on Medicare+ Choice options, visit Medicare.

For more information on SHIP or to volunteer, contact your local Area Agency on Aging.

Missouri CLAIM
“Community Leaders Assisting the Insured of Missouri” (CLAIM)

www.missouriclaim.org

Calling 1-800-390-3330

CLAIM answers questions about Medicare for Missourians.

CLAIM stands for “Community Leaders Assisting the Insured of Missouri.” We have been the official State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) for Missouri since 1993.

We are a nonprofit organization and all of our services are free, unbiased and confidential. We are not an insurance agency. We do not sell anything and our counselors do not ask for money.

CLAIM has more than 250 volunteer counselors throughout Missouri providing local Medicare counseling in their communities. Volunteers receive extensive training to become a certified Medicare counselor, and continue to receive updates and trainings on a regular basis.

Primaris provides the services for the CLAIM program through a contract with the Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions and Professional Registration (DIFP). Funding is provided by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services with oversight by DIFP.
How CLAIM Helps

Missourians let us know they need help in one of three ways:
1. Calling 1-800-390-3330

Our friendly call-center staff will take your name & basic information. Then we relay that information to one of our local community partners. Within days, a volunteer counselor calls back to set up an appointment or to discuss your Medicare issue by phone.

The phone line is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding federal holidays.

Montana SHIP
Montana State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)

www.dphhs.mt.gov/sltc/services/aging/SHIP/ship.shtml

SHIP Counselor at 1-800-551-3191

he Montana State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) is a free health-benefits counseling and advocacy service for Medicare beneficiaries and their families or caregivers. Our mission is to educate, advocate FOR, counsel and empower people to make informed benefit decisions. Link to Medicare 101

The Montana SHIP is an independent, objective, and confidential assistance program funded by CENTERS FOR MEDICARE AND MEDICAID SERVICES (CMS) and is not affiliated with the insurance industry. This program is based and operated through our Area Agencies on Aging; you may contact your local SHIP Counselor at 1-800-551-3191.

How can the Montana SHIP help you?
When you contact the SHIP office, we will link you with a local SHIP counselor who can meet with you and educate you regarding:

Medicare Eligibility, Enrollment and Benefits
Medicare Part D (Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage) plan comparisons
Related types of health insurance benefits
Medigap (Supplemental) Insurance
Medicare Health Plans
Medicare Fraud, Waste and Abuse
Long Term Care options and information

Who are the SHIP counselors?
SHIP counselors are specialists trained in Medicare eligibility, benefits and options, health insurance counseling and related insurance products. SHIP counselors are not connected with any insurance company, nor are they licensed to sell insurance. A SHIP counselor will not make decisions for you; rather, their purpose is to assist you objectively and confidentially, and to empower you to make your own wise health care decisions.

What if I am homebound?
A SHIP counselor will meet with you in your home if you cannot get out or don’t have transportation.

How do I contact the SHIP?
Call 1-800-551-3191. If you need an appointment, staff will refer you to the local Area Agency on Aging for your county of residence, and you will be put in touch with your local SHIP counselor.

Is this service really free?
Yes, SHIP counselors provide time and expertise at no cost to you. SHIP receives funding from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and is an objective, confidential and FREE program.

Group presentations available
SHIP counselors also conduct public presentations on Medicare, Medicare supplemental insurance, long term care options, Medicare Advantage options, Medicare fraud, waste and abuse and other issues of importance to Medicare beneficiaries and their families.

Nebraska SHIIP
Nebraska Senior Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP)

www.doi.nebraska.gov/shiip/

Call the Nebraska SHIIP today at 1-800-234-7119

Since Medicare and other types of health insurance can be confusing, the State of Nebraska has developed a program to educate older Nebraskans and people with disabilities about their health insurance. This program is known as the Nebraska Senior Health Insurance Information Program, or SHIIP.

The Nebraska SHIIP does not sell any products or policies, does not conduct market research, and is not related to any insurance companies. SHIIP not only provides presentations at senior centers and other organizations, but also maintains a counseling program for Nebraskans who request one-on-one assistance. SHIIP counselors provide accurate, objective information; they help you understand your options, so that you can make a better-informed decision.

Private counseling sessions may be scheduled to discuss Medicare benefits, Medicare Advantage products, Medicare Supplement policies, Medicare Part D, or Long-Term Care Insurance – just to name a few. All SHIIP presentations and counseling sessions are free and unbiased. In addition, all counseling sessions are completely confidential.

Nevada SHIP
Nevada State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)

www.nevadaadrc.com/services-and-programs/medicare/ship

Southern Nevada Toll Free Hotline: 800-307-4444
Northern Nevada Toll Free Hotline: 877-385-2345

The state grantees have built the SHIP network nationwide to include over to 1,300 local sponsoring organizations supporting over 12,000 counselors (mostly volunteers) and staff. Last year, the SHIPs served over 2.5 million Medicare beneficiaries through one-on-one, in-person and over the telephone counseling sessions and presentations and public education programs. SHIPs are currently providing community outreach, education, and one-on-one enrollment assistance to people with Medicare living in the communities served by these local programs.

New Jersey SHIP
State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)
www.state.nj.us/humanservices/doas/services/ship/
1-800-792-8820

The State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) provides free help to New Jersey Medicare beneficiaries who have problems with, or questions about their health insurance. SHIP is a statewide program sponsored by the New Jersey Department of Human Services with major funding from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the federal Medicare agency.

Medicare beneficiaries frequently have questions about benefits and claims, supplement policies, and long-term care insurance. Volunteer counselors, trained in areas of health insurance coverage and benefits that affect Medicare beneficiaries, provide information and assistance for dealing with claims and in evaluating health insurance needs.

Volunteer counselors do not provide legal advice, sell, recommend, endorse any specific insurance product, agent, insurance company, Health Maintenance Organization (HMO), Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) or Private Fee-for-Service (PFFS) plan. They provide information and assistance so that you can make your own decisions. Counseling is free of charge.

New Mexico SHIP
State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)

www.nmaging.state.nm.us/State_Health_Insurance_Assistance_Program.aspx

800-432-2080

Where do you turn when you have questions or concerns about private and government benefit programs?

The ADRC’s State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) helps with all health insurance questions, including Medicare and Medicaid. Our staff does not sell, endorse or recommend any insurance plans. We can provide you with accurate, unbiased and current information.

New York HIICAP
Health Insurance Information, Counseling and Assistance – HIICAP

www.aging.ny.gov/HealthBenefits/Index.cfm

1-800-701-0501

Where do you turn when you have questions or concerns about private and government benefit programs?

The ADRC’s State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) helps with all health insurance questions, including Medicare and Medicaid. Our staff does not sell, endorse or recommend any insurance plans. We can provide you with accurate, unbiased and current information.

HIICAP provides free, accurate and objective information, counseling, assistance and advocacy on Medicare, private health insurance, and related health coverage plans. HIICAP helps people with Medicare, their representatives, or persons soon to be eligible for Medicare.

What is the Program/Service

New York State’s HIICAP is a statewide network of Health Insurance Information, Counseling, and Assistance Programs, headquartered at Area Agencies on Aging or their subcontractor non-profit agencies. HIICAP is the New York State SHIP that receives Federal Assistance from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the State of New York to educate the public about Medicare, Medicare Advantage plans and other health insurance issues. HIICAP provides free, accurate and objective information, counseling, assistance and advocacy on Medicare, private health insurance, and related health coverage plans. HIICAP helps people with Medicare, their representatives, or persons soon to be eligible for Medicare.

HIICAP also provides information on low income programs such as the Elderly Pharmaceutical Insurance Coverage (EPIC) Program, Medicare Savings Programs, “Extra Help” prescription assistance and pharmacy discount programs. New York State has a number of programs for those with low incomes that make it easier to afford health care. These programs may pay part of your monthly costs, offer discounts or provide full medical coverage.

Who is Eligible?

The HIICAP Program is available to Medicare beneficiaries and to those who will soon become Medicare eligible residing in our state. New Yorkers can schedule free and confidential appointments with highly trained HIICAP Staff and volunteer counselors to discuss:

Medicare and health insurance questions about benefits, options, paperwork, and resources.
Medicare covered costs, deductibles and programs.
Health care costs that clients will be responsible for.
Information on insurance products that may help to pay for costs not covered by Medicare alone such as a Medigap or Medicare Advantage Plan.
How to review and select a Medicare Part D prescription plan.
Help in resolving specific health insurance problems.

The NYS Office for Aging (NYSOFA) coordinates HIICAP through a network of 59 county Offices for Aging where almost 500 trained insurance counselors are available to assist beneficiaries. The counselors can be contacted by calling 1-800-701-0501 and entering your ZIP Code. Callers are routed to the county in which they reside for direct assistance from the local HIICAP.

Is There a Cost?

HIICAP counseling services are funded through the Federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the State of New York. Many of the counselors are volunteers who generously devote their time to helping others understand Medicare issues.

North Carolina SHIIP
State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIIP)

www.ncdoi.com/SHIIP/Default.aspx

855-408-1212 (toll free) Monday thru Friday from 8am to 5pm.

The Seniors’ Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP) counsels Medicare beneficiaries and caregivers about Medicare, Medicare supplements, Medicare Advantage, Medicare Part D, and long-term care insurance. The counselors on our toll-free line offer free and unbiased information regarding Medicare health care products. We also help people recognize and prevent Medicare billing errors and possible fraud and abuse through our NC SMP Program.

Since the program’s creation in 1986, SHIIP has become a role model for other states and has received two national awards for “innovative” and “exemplary” service.

North Dakota SHIC
North Dakota State Health Insurance Counseling Program (SHIC)

www.nd.gov/ndins/shic

701.328.2440
701.328.9610 fax
888.575.6611 toll free
800.366.6888 TTY line

The State Health Insurance Counseling Program (SHIC) offers free help with Medicare and other health insurance. Trained counselors who work through local sponsoring organizations can help answer your questions. SHIC counselors have no connection with any insurance company or product.

SHIC counselors are trained in all aspects of senior insurance issues, such as Medicare, Medicare Part D and Medicare Advantage plans.

SHIC receives funding from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The program helps Medicare beneficiaries understand Medicare

Ohio OSHIIP
Ohio Senior Health Insurance Information Program (OSHIIP)

www.insurance.ohio.gov/aboutodi/odidiv/pages/oshiip.aspx

email: oshiipmail@insurance.ohio.gov

800-686-1578

OSHIIP, funded in part by state funds and by a grant from the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS), was founded in 1992 to provide Medicare beneficiaries with free, objective health insurance information and one-on-one counseling. OSHIIP’s speaker’s bureau, hotline experts and trained volunteers educate consumers about Medicare, Medicare prescription drug coverage (Part D), Medicare Advantage options, Medicaid, Medicare supplement insurance, long-term care insurance and other health insurance matters.

Oklahoma SHIP
State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)

www.ok.gov/oid/Consumers/Information_for_Seniors/SHIP.html

1-800-763-2828

The Senior Health Insurance Counseling Program (SHIP) is a non-profit organization helping to inform the public about Medicare and other senior health insurance issues. This division provides accurate and objective counseling, assistance, and advocacy relating to Medicare, Medicaid, Medicare supplements, Medicare Advantage, long-term care, and other related health coverage plans for Medicare beneficiaries, their representatives, or persons soon to be eligible for Medicare. Call our Senior Help Line at 1-800-763-2828 for assistance.

Oregon SHIBA
Oregon Senior Health Insurance Benefits Assistance (SHIBA)

www.oregon.gov/DCBS/SHIBA

Toll-free: 800-722-4134

Medicare is for people age 65 and older or under 65 and disabled. The Senior Health Insurance Benefits Assistance (SHIBA) program provides free counseling to people with Medicare and those who assist them. Call our toll-free SHIBA Helpline at 1-800-722-4134 to receive one-on-one counseling and assistance from state office staff or trained SHIBA volunteers in your area. We can help you select a Medicare prescription drug plan, compare Medicare Advantage Plans, compare Medicare Supplement Plans, and help you apply for Medicare Savings Programs, including Extra Help with Medicare Prescription Drug coverage. We also can help you review your Medical bills, and file appeals or complaints.

Pennsylvania APPRISE
www.portal.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt?open=514&objID=616587&mode=2

toll-free APPRISE Helpline is 1-800-783-7067

APPRISE is a free health insurance counseling program designed to help older Pennsylvanians with Medicare. Counselors are specially trained staff and volunteers who can answer your questions about Medicare and provide you with objective, easy-to-understand information about Medicare, Medicare Supplemental Insurance, Medicaid, and Long-Term Care Insurance.

Rhode Island SHIP
Rhode Island Senior Health Insurance Program (SHIP)

www.dea.ri.gov/insurance/

Telephone: 709-2635

The Rhode Island Senior Health Insurance Program (SHIP) is part of a national partnership to help consumers make informed health care choices. SHIP volunteers provide one-to-one, unbiased counseling to seniors, adults with disabilities, families, and caregivers. The program is designed to help seniors and adults with disabilities understand health care cost and coverage. SHIP counselors can discuss Medicare, Medicare Part D, supplemental insurance, Medicare Advantage plans, and other health insurance options. SHIP counselors assist beneficiaries in making the most appropriate choice for their health care needs.
For a complete listing of SHIP agencies, call 462-0510.

South Carolina SHIP
South Carolina State Health Insurance Program (SHIP)

aging.sc.gov/seniors/medicare/Pages/default.aspx

Medicare is insurance for the elderly and disabled. There are several parts to Medicare and many choices to be made by the consumer. To assist in these decisions, the state of South Carolina and the Federal government have put together a program call the State Health Insurance Program (SHIP) or alternately known as the Insurance Counseling Assistance and Referrals for Elders program (I-CARE). What it means to consumers is there are people throughout the state who can provide health insurance counseling for Medicare, Medicare Supplement, Medicare Savings program, Medicare Prescription Drug Plans, Medicare Advantage Plans and Senior Medicare Fraud programs.

Region 1: Appalachia
Kim Reyes – kreyes@scacog.org
Phone: 864 -242-9733 or (800) 434- 4036
Serving: Anderson, Cherokee, Greenville,
Oconee, Pickens, and Spartanburg

Region 2: Upper Savannah
Kathy Dickerson – kdickerson@uppersavannah.com
Phone: 864-941-8061
Serving: Abbeville, Edgefield, Greenwood, Laurens, McCormick, and Saluda
1-800-922-7729 (outside Greenwood County)

Region 3: Catawba
Deb Lewis – deb.lewis@catawba-aging.com
Phone: 803-329-9670 or (800) 662-8330
Serving: Chester, Lancaster, York, and Union

Region 4: Central Midlands
Shelia Bell-Ford – sbellford@centralmidlands.org
Phone: 803-376-5390 or (800) 391-1185
Serving: Fairfield, Lexington, Newberry, and Richland

Region 5: Lower Savannah
Tina Swan – tswan@lscog.org
Phone: 803-649-7981 or (866) 845-1550
Serving: Aiken, Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Calhoun, and Orangeburg

Region 6: Santee-Lynches
Janae Allumbaugh – sllegal@slcog.org
Phone: 803-775-7381 or (800) 948-1042
Serving: Clarendon, Kershaw, Lee and Sumter

Region 7: Vantage Point
Sherry Johnson – sherryjohnson@caresouth-carolina.com
Phone: 843-383-8632 or (866) 505-3331
Serving: Chesterfield, Darlington, Dillon, Florence, Marion, and Marlboro

Region 8: Waccamaw
Brenda Blackstock – Brenda_blackstock@yahoo.com
Phone: 843-546-4231 or (800) 302-7550
Serving Georgetown, Horry and Williamsburg

Region 9: Trident
Angela Edwards – aedwards@tridentaaa.com
Phone: 843-554-2275 or (800) 894-0415
Serving: Berkeley, Charleston and Dorchester

Region 10: Lowcountry
Karen Anderson – kanderson@lowcountrycog.org
Phone: 843-726-5536 or (877) 846-8148
Serving: Beaufort, Colleton, Hampton, and Jasper

South Dakota SHIINE
Senior Health Information & Insurance Education

www.shiine.net

Eastern South Dakota – 605-333-3314
Central South Dakota – 605-224-3212
Western South Dakota – 605-342-8635

The mission of SHIINE is to advocate for, inform, educate and assist consumers on Medicare and related health information and insurance issues so consumers can make timely, informed decisions and access resources to meet their needs.

We have staff and trained volunteer counselors statewide who can assist people, free of charge, who have problems or questions regarding their Medicare benefits.

Tennessee SHIP
Tennessee’s State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)

www.tdi.texas.gov/consumer/hicap/hicaphme.html

Call us at 1-877-801-0044

The Tennessee State Health Insurance Assistance Program is a statewide program that provides free and objective counseling and assistance to persons with questions or problems regarding Medicare and other related health insurances. In Tennessee, SHIP operates through the state’s nine Area Agencies on Aging & Disability (AAADs). These agencies offer a variety of services besides SHIP, all aimed at helping persons who are elderly and/or have disabilities to live better lives. Get Your Medicare Questions Answered by Tennessee’s State Health Insurance Assistance Program.

Texas HICAP
Health Information Counseling Advocacy Program of Texas

www.tdi.texas.gov/consumer/hicap/hicaphme.html

1-800-252-3439

HICAP´s mission is to establish and maintain a comprehensive, coordinated and statewide system of health insurance counseling for older and disabled Texans.

The Texas Department of Insurance partners with the Texas Legal Services Center and the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services to provide information about both public benefits and private health insurance.

All HICAP programs in Texas are committed to working with seniors, particularly in the area of benefits counseling. HICAP staff and volunteers, located in 28 Area Agency on Aging offices, are trained in all aspects of public and private benefits.

HICAP staff and volunteer benefits counselors provide one-to-one assistance to seniors by:

Providing information about Medicare and Medicaid eligibility, program benefits, and appeal rights.
Providing assistance with completing Medicare and supplementary claim forms.
Explaining Medicare supplement insurance policy benefits, exclusions, and coverage language.
Explaining the pros and cons of health maintenance organization (HMO) memberships.
Providing information about long-term care options, including long-term care insurance.
Making referrals to HICAP staff, the Texas Legal Services Center, or other appropriate community agencies.

Benefits counselors are not allowed to recommend any policy or plan. Their role is to provide factual, unbiased information and assistance and to act as advocates when needed.

HICAP is partially funded by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. It is not affiliated with any insurance company or HMO.

Utah SHIIP
Utah Senior Health Insurance Information Program

daas.utah.gov/senior-services

Call Toll Free 1-800-541-7735

The State Health Insurance Assistance Program, or SHIP, is a national program that offers one-on-one counseling and assistance to people with Medicare and their families.

Vermont SHIP
www.medicarehelpvt.net

800-642-5119

This program is designed to provide help with questions or concerns about Medicare related issues to those 65 and over or with disabilities.

Trained counselors and volunteers are located in the Area Agencies on Aging. We are here to help you with any questions or problems you have with Medicare or other health insurance, including the Vermont State programs.

Our counselors resolve insurance confusion in the following programs:

Medicare – Parts A, B, C & D
Medicaid
Medigap Supplemental Insurance
VPharm (Vermont’s prescription drug coverage program for people with Medicare)

And can help you with…

Questions about Medicare, Medicaid or other health insurance coverage
Questions about Durable Medical Equipment coverage
Selecting and enrolling in a Medicare Part D plan
Problems obtaining your medications with Medicare Part D coverage
Sorting out confusing medical bills and statements
Filing health benefits claims or appealing denial of coverage
Identifying and correcting claims errors

Virginia VICAP
Virginia Insurance Counseling and Assistance Program (VICAP)

www.vda.virginia.gov/vicap.asp
Phone: 800-552-3402

Washington DC HICP
District of Columbia Health Insurance Counseling Project HICP

www.law.gwu.edu/Academics/EL/clinics/insurance/Pages/About.aspx

For further information, please call: 202.739.0668 (TTY 202.973.1079)

For District of Columbia residents with Medicare, or who are 60 years or older, HICP provides

Telephone Help Line
-Leave confidential messages
-Calls returned during business hour
Legal Representation
-Office Visits (by appointment)
-Home Visits (as needed)
Community Education Programs
Our information sessions help you understand Medicare, Medicaid, and private health insurance. Please call us to set an appointment to have sessions held at your schools, churches, senior centers, government agencies, and community groups

For further information, please call: 202.739.0668 (TTY 202.973.1079)

HICP is a part of The George Washington Law School, and charges no fees for its services. HICP gratefully accepts tax-deductible donations.

Washington SHIBA
Statewide Health Insurance Benefits Advisors (SHIBA)

www.insurance.wa.gov/about-oic/what-we-do/advocate-for-consumers/shiba/

Call our Insurance Consumer Hotline at 800-562-6900 for free help.

Part of the insurance commissioner’s consumer protection services, SHIBA provides free, unbiased, and confidential assistance with Medicare and health care choices.

West Virgina SHIP
WV State Health Insurance Assistance Program

www.wvship.org/AboutWVSHIP/tabid/132/Default.aspx

Phone:
(304) 558-3317, (877) 987-4463

When the Medicare insurance, counseling, and assistance programs were established nationwide in the early 1990s, their primary focus was addressing the confusion caused by the increase in choices of Medicare supplemental insurance (Medigap). The role of a SHIP counselor today, however, is far more complex and covers topics from traditional Medicare to the recent prescription drug plans.

Specifically, SHIP counselors:

Provide information and answer questions about Medicare, Medicare Advantage (such as Health Maintenance Organizations) plans, Medigap plans, and long-term care insurance plans.

Give information about and advocate for preventive health benefits paid by Medicare.

Help beneficiaries and their families understand the Medicare prescription drugs coverage (Medicare Part D) and options available in West Virginia.

Answer questions and help resolve concerns about medical bills, insurance claims, and Medicare summary notices.

Meet by telephone or in person to review national and state-specific programs, including prescription drug discount programs and programs that help reduce out-of-pocket medical expenses.

Educate beneficiaries about their rights for quality care and options for appeals of Medicare decisions.

Educate beneficiaries about how to recognize Medicare fraud and abuse and how to report it.

Make presentations to groups in the community about all aspects of Medicare.

Wisconsin SHIP
Wisconsin State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)

www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/benefit-specialists/ship.htm

(1-800-472-1638)
(1-877-333-0202)

The State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) refers to a group of federal and state funded programs. These programs work together to provide assistance with public and private health insurance issues and options to Medicare beneficiaries or those soon to be Medicare beneficiaries, their families and caregivers. SHIP has a centralized component of statewide assistance and a local component of county- and tribal-based benefit counselors.

The centralized component includes the Medigap Helpline (exit DHS), at 1-800-242-1060 that provides counseling on original Medicare, Medicare supplement insurance, employer-based health insurance, Medicare Advantage plans, long term care insurance and related topics (a service of the Wisconsin Board on Aging and Long Term Care. (exit DHS)

SHIP operates two toll-free assistance centers to help persons with the drug benefit under Part D of Medicare: the Wisconsin Medigap Part D and Prescription Drug Helpline for persons age 60 and older (1-855-677-2783); and the Disability Drug Benefit Helpline, operated by Disability Rights Wisconsin (exit DHS), primarily for persons under age 60 eligible for Medicare because of a disability (1-800-926-4862, 1-888-758-6049 TTY).

The local component of SHIP consists predominantly of the Elder Benefit Specialist Program and the Disability Benefit Specialist Program. Benefit specialists are well-trained local advocates who assist not only with Medicare issues but with other private and governmental benefits as well. Elder benefit specialists, who serve persons age 60 and above, are available for every county and tribe. Disability benefit specialists serve persons with a disability age 18 through 59. They are available in every county where there is a state-funded Aging and Disability Resource Center.

SHIP also provides benefits counseling through the Office for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing to persons who are deaf, hard of hearing or deafblind and use sign language as their primary language.

SHIP also funds education and individual health benefits assistance for Native American Medicare beneficiaries through the Indian Law Office of Wisconsin Judicare, Inc. (exit DHS) (1-800-472-1638) It also funds the Greater Wisconsin Agency on Aging Resources (exit DHS) to provide assistance on Medicare Advantage plans and Medicare drug plans (1-877-333-0202) in Wisconsin.

Wyoming WSHIIP
Wyoming State Health Insurance Information Program WSHIIP

www.wyomingseniors.com/services/wyoming-state-health-insurance-information-program

1-800-856-4398

Wyoming State Health Insurance Information Program (WSHIIP) is a federally mandated program. It was set up to help seniors and others on Medicare understand their rights and answer their questions. We have over eighty volunteers in almost every county who will counsel beneficiaries and help solve problems, confidentiality, and it is free of charge. Trained counselors promote consumer understanding of Medicare, Medicaid, Medicare supplement and long-term care insurance. Call 1-800-856-4398 for:

Free service
Specially trained counselors
Unbiased information providers
Consumer retains all rights to choices
Free Long Term Care Insurance Buyers Guide available
Free Medicare Supplement Insurance Buyers Guide available

WSHIIP volunteers must attend yearly in-services to keep them up-to-date on Medicare issues.

Call 1-800-856-4398 for further information, specific names and phone numbers of volunteers.

Medicare Supplemental Insurance in Wyoming – We all know that Medicare does not pay 100% of medical bills. In Wyoming, the only choice available for beneficiaries to help fill in the gaps is supplemental insurance. Medicare is encouraging companies to offer the other options, such as HMOs, MSAs, PSOs, etc., but again, as of now supplemental insurance (Medigap) is probably the choice available in Wyoming. New companies are offering policies with Medicare Part D, the Medicare prescription benefit, as of January 1, 2006. Before purchasing an HMO, PPO, etc., check with your doctor and hospital to make sure they will honor these policies. Wyoming Senior Citizens, Inc. in partnership with the Aging Division of Wyoming and the Administration on Aging began a three-year project entitled Senior Patrol. The Project has been successful and is now renamed Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP). The Senior Medicare Patrol project is designed to educate seniors and the general public to identify Medicare/Medicaid fraud, waste and abuse. Wyoming Senior Citizens, Inc., Ombudsman and the Wyoming State Health Insurance Information Program will lead the project. The WSHIIP Volunteers will also be very involved. Visit our Senior Medicare Patrol link to learn more about Medicare/Medicaid fraud, waste and abuse. FRAUD is the intentional deception or misrepresentation, which an individual knows to be false, or does not believe to be true, and makes knowing that the deception could result in some unauthorized payment to himself/herself or some other person. ABUSE is unintentional deception, but results in payment for items or services when there is no legal entitlement to that payment, and is inconsistent with sound medical, business, or fiscal practices or are medically unnecessary. For an explanation or address of insurance companies that carry MEDICARE SUPPLEMENT “MEDIGAP” INSURANCE or LONG-TERM CARE INSURANCE click on either title. The Wyoming Aging Division and CMS.gov are sites for information for seniors in Wyoming.


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