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Feb. 20, 2013

Partnering with Medicaid to streamline application processes

Medical paperworkBudget cuts and limited resources can leave state offices understaffed, sometimes resulting in delays in processing client applications. Recognizing the negative impact this can have on low-income seniors, the Delaware State Health Insurance Assistance Program developed an innovative partnership with the Delaware Medicaid and Medical Assistance office to streamline the application process for the Medicare Savings Programs.
Read about their success

5 ways your clients can save money on prescriptions

Clients often tell benefits counselors how difficult it is to afford their prescription medications. You already know about the Part D Low Income Subsidy (Extra Help), but are you aware of other ways your clients can save money at the pharmacy?
Share our 5 tips

Woman with questioning lookCMS answers your ACA questions about Medicaid

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services continues to receive many questions from stakeholders regarding implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), specifically the Medicaid expansion. Answers to these questions are updated frequently on
Find the FAQs about ACA

LIHEAP forecast: Sequestration cuts linger

In September 2012, a Continuing Resolution funded the government through March 2013, and extended the FY12 funding level for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). Roughly 90% of the total $3.47 billion regular block grant funding was disbursed to states in November. Last week, the House Democratic Appropriations Committee released a report estimating that if sequestration goes into effect on March 1, the program will lose $185 million.
Read the report | Download our LIHEAP fact sheet

Counselors' Corner logo

Get the updated LIS/Extra Help income criteria for 2013

Money and prescription bottlesWith the recent release of the federal poverty levels for 2013, CMS has now updated the eligibility criteria for the low-income subsidy (LIS)/Part D Extra Help program. The new income criteria are effective as of Jan. 1. If you have clients with income less than $17,235 ($23,265 for a couple) and resources less than $13,300 ($26,580 for a couple) they should apply for LIS. These income amounts are slightly higher in Alaska and Hawaii. Also, other people will automatically qualify (“deemed”) for LIS if they receive Medicaid or one of the Medicare Savings Programs.
Download our LIS eligibility chart | Learn more about the deeming process | Read the update from CMS


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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