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State Health Insurance Assistance Program

Paying for medical care
Written by Legal Aid WV

03/23/2017

One of the key agencies the Ombudsman Program works with, and often refers individuals to, is the West Virginia State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) which is a program of the WV Bureau of Senior Services.  It is housed at the Bureau’s main office in Charleston and in many county senior centers throughout WV.   SHIP is a federally funded program which “provides free, objective and confidential help to West Virginia Medicare beneficiaries.”   SHIP counselors provide information about:

  • Medicare eligibility and benefits,
  • Medicare prescription drug plan and Medicare savings plans,
  • Medigap (Medicare supplemental plans),
  • Medicare Advantage plans,
  • Long-term care insurance plans,
  • Durable medical equipment suppliers,
  • Preventive services,
  • Hospitals,
  • Nursing home and home health care provider comparisons,
  • Medicare fraud,
  • How to order a new Medicare card, and
  • How to find a doctor.

Their website is very informative and includes Medicare Supplement Plans and Monthly Rate comparisons which are updated regularly, Medicare costs for Parts A, B and D and a direct link to the Nursing Home Compare website which allows the reader the chance to see how a nursing home has been rated in comparisons to other nursing homes in that area.  The state SHIP office can be reached by phone at 304-558-3317 or 877-987-4463.

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