Nearly one out of every two Louisiana seniors and adults with disabilities are eligible for additional assistance paying for their Medicare premiums
Nearly one out of every two Louisiana seniors and adults with disabilities are eligible for additional assistance paying for their Medicare premiums, co-pays or Part D expenses but do not know how to apply to receive all the benefits for which they are eligible, reports from the National Council on Aging show.
“As we approach May, which is Older Americans Month, Louisiana Aging and Disability Resource Centers are asking older adults and adults with disabilities to contact our free benefits counseling program now,” said Michelle Guillory, Program Manager, Governor’s Office of Elderly Affairs.
“Our centers are here to help eligible adults receive all the Medicare benefits for which they qualify…programs like the Medicare Savings Plan or the Low Income Subsidy Program. We help enroll Medicare eligible individuals for free,” said Ms. Guillory.
Over 253,000 additional men and women will turn 65 before 2020, and one in every five of these new beneficiaries will be eligible for additional assistance programs, said Ms. Guillory. “So we have a lot of work to do,” she added. Seniors and adults with disabilities are encouraged to call the Louisiana Aging and Disability Resource Center nearest them now and ask for the following:
1. A review of their Medicare Part A, B and D benefit plans to be sure they are getting all the assistance for which they are eligible;
2. Application for the Medicare Savings Plan which could help pay for Part A and B premiums, as well as co-pays and deductibles;
3. Application for the Low Income Subsidy to see if they are eligible for additional help with their Part D prescription premium, deductible, co-pay and “donut” hole.
Every Medicare recipient should have their benefit package reviewed and updated every year, said Ms. Guillory because benefits change. Counselors will ask the caller for information from their Medicare Insurance Card, proof of their income, a list of their prescriptions, with dosages, and an estimate on what they spent on drugs in the past 12 months. Walk-ins are welcome at any state Council on Aging or Area Agency on Aging office.
“To get the extra help, let us help you apply,” said Ms. Guillory. The assistance is free and offered through the Governor’s Office of Elderly Affairs. Participating ADRCs can be found at www.louisianaanswers.com or by calling these areas:
Caddo (800) 256-3003
Cajun (800) 738-2256
Calcasieu (800) 223-5872
Capital (800) 280-0908
CENLA (800) 454-9573
Jefferson (800) 635-1437
Orleans (888) 922-8522
Terrebonne (800) 353-3265
Statewide (877) 340-9100
For information contact M. Guillory (225) 342-7100 or C. Brylski (504) 897-6110