National Council on Aging

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April 3, 2013

Six creative benefits outreach strategies

Shredding paperHeard of community paper shreds? Know about geographic information system mapping? These are just a few of the creative strategies that Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act (MIPPA) grantees used to help low-income older adults learn about and enroll in benefits. Their numbers back them up—at the close of the MIPPA grants, more than 200,000 people with Medicare enrolled in benefits worth nearly $2 billion.
See the 6 strategies | Download the final MIPPA results

MIPPA: What we’ve learned and what’s next

Last September marked the end of the second round of MIPPA grants to states. What lessons have the states learned in helping low-income Medicare beneficiaries apply for benefits? What trends may continue under the next MIPPA funding cycle? We’ll answer these questions and more in our April 30 webinar.
Register for the webinar

VolunteerPutting a value on your volunteers' time

Volunteers play a key role in helping older adults learn about and apply for benefits. The Independent Sector, a leadership network for nonprofits and philanthropies, has estimated the hourly value of volunteer time at both a national and state level.
Get the estimates

Medicare drug savings = $6 billion

In the three years since passage of the Affordable Care Act, more than 6.3 million people with Medicare have saved over $6 billion on prescription drugs. In 2013, the health care law increases the discounts and savings in the prescription drug coverage gap (“donut hole”) to 52.5% of the cost of covered brand-name drugs and 21% of the cost of covered generic drugs.
See state-by-state donut hole savings

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Update on Medicaid expansion

Doctor and PatientUnder the Affordable Care Act, states can expand Medicaid to cover adults (including non-disabled parents and childless adults) with incomes up to 138% of poverty. As of now, it appears 25 states and the District of Columbia have confirmed their intent to expand Medicaid. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently announced its final rule (with comment period), which explains how states can get 100% federal funding for expansion through 2016, and how to get matching dollars when funding starts to phase down to 90% in 2017. States have no deadline to decide to participate in the expansion.
Find where your state stands | Read the HHS press release | Learn more about
Medicaid expansion


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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