The Transylvania Times -

Six Volunteers Save Medicare Beneficiaries Over $185,000


August 21, 2017

Courtesy Photo

SHIIP volunteers are (back row, left to right) Bart Renner, Transylvania County Extension Center director, Tim Hansen, Andy Stratton, Mark Allison and Sandy Tooman. On the front row are Elaine Deppe, Catherine Fannon, western region manager, SHIIP; and Michele Barg. Not pictured, Liz Bates.

How did six volunteers save Medicare beneficiaries in Transylvania County more $185,000 in 2016? The answer to that question is that the Seniors' Health Insurance Program (SHIIP) counselors provided free and unbiased information and counseling to beneficiaries all year long.

Through this consumer information division of the North Carolina Department of Insurance, the counselors assist people with Medicare, Medicare Part D, Medicare supplements, Medicare Advantage, and long – term care insurance questions. The counselors also help citizens recognize and prevent Medicare billing errors and possible fraud and abuse through the NC Senior Medicare Patrol Program.

Elaine Deppe, the Transylvania County SHIIP Coordinator, accepted the Western County of the Year Award on behalf of the Transylvania volunteers at the Annual SHIIP Coor-dinators Conference held in Raleigh in July. This award is in recognition of the outstanding achievements and services to the citizens of NC through SHIIP counseling and outreach events in Transylvania County.

The NC Department of Insurance Commissioner, Mike Causey, proclaimed that, "SHIIP would not be able to serve our state's nearly 1.9 million Medi-care recipients without the hard work and dedication of (all) our volunteers and coordinators. It was my honor to present these awards to these very deserving individuals."

Coordinated in Tran-sylvania County by the NC Cooperative Extension, the SHIIP program offers free, confidential and unbiased services at 106 E. Morgan St. in Brevard. Call (828) 884-3109 for an appointment.


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