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Free unbiased help with Medicare is here

SPONSORED — Whether you’re getting ready to enroll in Medicare or are already on Medicare but feeling overwhelmed by the amount of information and what to do, help is here!

The Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner’s Statewide Health Insurance Benefits Advisors (SHIBA) program offers free, unbiased and confidential help with Medicare. We do not sell insurance. Our statewide network of trained volunteer counselors help you understand your Medicare insurance options and rights.

Volunteer counselors can help you with:

• Assessing your health care coverage needs.
• Determining eligibility for Medicare health care coverage plans and programs.
• Screening for income guidelines, being mindful of programs that might help you pay for your Medicare, and helping with fraud and general complaints.
• Talking to Medicare on your behalf.
• Providing enrollment help when you first come onto Medicare and annually during open enrollment.
• Making referrals to other agencies and programs.

During 2021 and until we are all safe from COVID-19, our volunteer counselors will continue to provide help to clients over the phone or via an online webinar instead of our normal face-to-face appointments. We also offer online Medicare presentations so you can learn more about how Medicare works.

Medicare is not a one-size fits all program. Each person’s needs, situation and benefits are different – and that includes spouses who may have their own unique Medicare plan. So if you have questions or need someone to help walk you through what your options are, give SHIBA a call at 1-800-562-6900 and ask for your local SHIBA office.

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