Health & Environment

North End ABCD Center Offers Medicare Counseling

Medicare Annual Open Enrollment Approaches!

Don’t Miss Your Annual “SHINE” Check-up!

ABCD Urges Medicare Beneficiaries to Sign Up for Plan Assistance; Medicare Open Enrollment to Run Nov. 15 to Dec. 31

SHINE Counselors Available to Answer Questions

Many Medicare plans are changing next year and, for the first time in many years, SHINE leaders – Serving the Health Information Needs of Elders – are spreading out to Boston neighborhoods to answer questions and enroll beneficiary in the best plans for their needs.

“Plans have different deductibles, co-pays, covered drugs and restrictions,” said Elaine Cronin, Regional Director for Boston’s SHINE program, adding that Part D plans, for instance, are set to increase with monthly premiums ranging from $14.80 to $210.10.

Site hours, only available through reservation on a first call-first served basis by calling the Boston SHINE office at (617) 348-6226, will occur during the Medicare Annual Open Enrollment Period set to start November 15 and continue through December 31. Coverage will begin January 1, 2011.

Scheduled neighborhood sites include:

  • North End: Fridays, 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.
    at the ABCD North End/West End NSC, 1 Michelangelo St.
  • West End: Mondays, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.
    in the West End Library, 151 Cambridge St.

Massachusetts General Hospital’s Senior HealthWISE members may call Krista Landsman at (617) 643-6304 to schedule appointments in the Amy Lowell House, Beacon House, or the Blackstone Building.

Medicare beneficiaries will be notified by mail if their plans are set to change. They are asked to visit to review plan costs and what is covered, compare them with other eligible plans, and choose a plan that meets their requirements and budget.

About SHINE:

SHINE provides free health insurance information, counseling and assistance to Massachusetts residents with Medicare. Information is disseminated by volunteer trained and certified SHINE counselors who provide information on Medicare A & B, Medicare Advantage, Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage, Medigap, Mass Health, Medicaid and other programs that help pay for health care costs for people with limited income and resources.

About ABCD:

ABCD serves more than 80,000 low-income Boston-area residents through its central offices and a decentralized network of Neighborhood Service Centers (NSCs), Head Start centers, Family Planning sites and Foster Grandparent sites. Programs and affiliations include Fuel Assistance; Head Start; Child Care Services; Child Care Choices of Boston; Education; Career Development; Housing and Homelessness Services; Health Services; Family Planning; Urban College of Boston; University High – an Alternative High School; Ostiguy High School for high school students in recovery; Weatherization; Foster Grandparents; Elder Services; Intergenerational Programs; Food Pantries in several Boston neighborhoods; management of the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC), Commonwealth of Massachusetts Employees Charitable Campaign (COBECC) and City of Boston Employees Charitable Campaign (COBECC); advocacy and consumer services.