Free help available during Medicare Open Enrollment

GRUNDY CENTER – Each year between October 15 and December 7, Iowans who utilize Medicare for their health insurance benefits have the opportunity to review and make changes to their prescription drug plan (known as Part D coverage) or other portions of their Medicare coverage for the following year. Two trained SHIIP (Senior Health Insurance Information Program) volunteers at the Grundy County Memorial Hospital are available to help members of the public who are 65 and better make decisions on which plan is best for their needs.

Part D and Medicare Advantage plans can change their coverage, premiums, co-payments and provider networks every year. It is important that Medicare beneficiaries use Open Enrollment as a time to review changes to their current plan and compare with plans available to them in 2023. Medicare-eligible individuals are encouraged to call now to schedule an appointment well before the December 7th deadline for making changes. The phone number to make an appointment for a free and confidential one-on-one consultation with a SHIIP volunteer is 319-824-5081.

SHIIP volunteers are also available at the hospital year-round to help those new to Medicare (turning age 65) enroll and evaluate the benefit options available to them.

The Iowa SHIIP program also provides community outreach and education on Medicare financial assistance eligibility, and how to guard against Medicare fraud. “The SHIIP program has a great track record for saving Iowans money and helping them with Medicare questions and problems. In 2022, the program served over 60,000 Medicare beneficiaries statewide and saved clients in Iowa millions of dollars”, shared Kristin Griffith, the SHIIP-SMP Director with the state Department of Insurance. “Our dedicated SHIIP-SMP volunteers have completed an extensive training program and are certified each year.” Appointments may be made at the Grundy County Memorial Hospital SHIIP site by phoning 319-824-5081 Monday through Friday.