National Council on Aging

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June 19, 2013

women at computerOnline promotion of MSPs: Findings from a state survey

How easily can consumers in your state find information online about the Medicare Savings Programs (MSPs)? A survey of state Medicaid websites found that very few states have any content on MSPs, and among those that do only three—Connecticut, Oklahoma, and Wisconsin—have easy-to-find, comprehensive information on the programs.
Get the survey results

Medicare reform: The seniors’ perspective

As policymakers debate the future of Medicare, the Leadership Council of Aging Organizations (LCAO)—a coalition of 68 prominent national aging advocacy organizations—has released a compilation of fact sheets about the reform proposals. Reforms affecting out-of-pocket costs for beneficiaries, home health care, and physician payment are among the topics covered.
Download the LCAO compilation

HHS releases summer LIHEAP funds

Close-up of thermostatThe U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released $187.4 million in Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) funding to states to help low-income households meet rising home energy costs. The latest funding amount supplements the $3.065 billion in LIHEAP block grants made available earlier in the federal fiscal year.
See the allocation of funds by state

Apply for funding to engage senior volunteers

The Corporation for National and Community Service has released the RSVP 2014 Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) to provide local nonprofit and public agencies an opportunity to increase their capacity by engaging adults aged 55+ in high impact volunteer service. Up to $14 million is available to local organizations. Apply by Sept. 10.
Learn how to apply

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Familiarize yourself with the newly designed Medicare notice

woman at mailboxCMS recently revamped the Medicare Summary Notice (MSN). The MSN is a quarterly notice (not a bill) sent to people with Parts A and/or B that shows all services or supplies billed during the past 3-month period. It includes information on what Medicare paid and the maximum amount your clients may owe the provider. Paper versions of the new MSNs will be sent out starting this summer. Remind your clients to review their MSN closely and report any inaccurate claims or appeal any payments/decisions with which they disagree.
View a comparison of old and new MSNs | Learn more about Medicare coverage notices | Read the CMS press release


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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