National Council on Aging

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May 2, 2012

Man with piggybankMIPPA saves millions, reduces gap in missing benefits

An Ohio man cut his prescription costs from $500 to $18 a month. A New Jersey woman, disabled in a car accident, is now saving over $6,000 on her annual insurance costs. These are just a few of the nearly half a million people who’ve been helped as a result of Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act (MIPPA) funding to the states. Last year, MIPPA grantees reduced the gap of people missing out on benefits by 12%.
Read about their successes | See the latest MIPPA work

New guide to SSI

You’ve seen our Benefits 101 training webinar—now get the accompanying guide to the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefit. Our new guide explains in more detail who’s eligible for SSI, what the maximum benefit may be for your clients, and how SSI works in conjunction with other key benefits for people with Medicare.
Download the guide | View the SSI 101 training webinar

BDT tells Congress about technology’s role in benefits access

Ginger at BDT hearingBenefits Data Trust (BDT), one of NCOA’s Benefits Enrollment Centers, recently spoke before the U.S. House of Representatives’ Ways and Means Subcommittee about using data and technology to better target benefits. BDT emphasized how data-sharing strategies can streamline benefits application processes and cut outreach and application costs.
Watch the testimony | Download our data-sharing Issue Brief

HHS forms new Administration for Community Living

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has formed a new division that will merge the Administration on Aging with the Administration on Developmental Disabilities and the Office on Disability. The Administration for Community Living (ACL) will strengthen HHS efforts to support community living for both seniors and younger persons with disabilities. Assistant Secretary for Aging Kathy Greenlee will serve as the ACL Administrator.
Learn more

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Changes to how clients get durable medical equipment through Medicare

checking blood glucoseThe Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has been rolling out a new way for people with Medicare to get durable medical equipment (DME). Under the DME bidding program, suppliers must submit bids to CMS before they can be suppliers under Medicare and must adhere to stringent quality measures. A recent report about the first round of the DME bidding program found savings of $202 million.
Find out more | Read the report

CMS releases results from home health agency survey

CMS recently released the results of a survey of people with Medicare about their experiences with Medicare-certified home health agencies. The results will be updated every four months and will serve as a supplement to the clinical measures. The results can be found on Quality Care Finder.
Learn more | Use the Quality Care Finder

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Benefits Alert is published by the National Center for Benefits Outreach and Enrollment and National Council on Aging. Your contributions and comments are welcome and should be sent to

The National Center for Benefits Outreach and Enrollment helps organizations enroll seniors and younger adults with disabilities with limited means into the benefits programs for which they are eligible so that they can remain healthy and improve the quality of their lives. For more information, visit


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The National Council on Aging is a nonprofit service and advocacy organization headquartered in Washington, DC. NCOA is a national voice for older Americans—especially those who are vulnerable and disadvantaged—and the community organizations that serve them. It brings together nonprofit organizations, businesses, and government to develop creative solutions that improve the lives of all older adults. NCOA works with thousands of organizations across the country to help seniors find jobs and benefits, improve their health, live independently, and remain active in their communities. For more information, visit