For the Troy Daily News
TROY — For a fourth year in a row, Medicare counselors will serve the County during the open enrollment period.
Health Partners Free Clinic, located in Troy, will continue to offer free help in selecting the right Medicare health insurance and drug plans for Miami County residents.
Lois Wiggin, patient assistance program advocate at the clinic, is a certified Medicare counselor through the Ohio Senior Health Insurance Information Program. Volunteers Diana Bashore and Pam Ford are also certified Medicare counselors with the Ohio Senior Health Insurance Information Program (OSHIIP) and based at the clinic.
“We are here to educate people about Medicare,” Wiggin said.
Open enrollment for anyone Medicare-eligible begins Oct. 15 and runs through Dec. 7. Those who are currently receiving benefits may need to make adjustments to their plans or may have questions about Medicare.
“We’re here year-round to help people review their plans, discuss an issue about a claim or other Medicare questions,” Bashore said. “It is especially important to review their prescription drug coverage to ensure their medications are still covered on their current plan.”
Pam Ford, who is new to the team this year, spent a career in insurance and knows well of the sign-up complexities. She states, “I hope to reach more seniors who have questions about their Medicare options, particularly in the Piqua area.”
Ford has chosen to volunteer her time in an effort to expand the work of Wiggin and Bashore, in hopes to provide services at Health Partners and collaborate with other organizations in Piqua to create other meeting spaces for these services.
Wiggin, Bashore, and Ford agree that it’s a good idea for individuals to review their Medicare plans annually. Deductible and co-pay requirements may have changed, along with an individual’s health care needs.
To schedule an appointment for a review or to discuss other Medicare issues, telephone Lois Wiggin at Health Partners Free Clinic at 332-0894, Ext. 213. Individuals should bring their Medicare card and any other insurance cards with them. Individuals should also bring all of their medications they currently take with them, preferably the medication bottles themselves in a bag.
Health Partners was incorporated in 1998 and is the lone free medical clinic serving Miami County residents.