The State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) offers unbiased, federally funded Medicare counseling by a trained staff member or volunteer.  SHIP counselors may be able to help you apply for benefits to help save costs on Medicare, such as Medicare Savings Programs (MSPs) or Medicare Part D Extra Help.

"You shouldn't have to decide between food or medication that you have to have to be healthy and live," said Mary Crandall, who was helped by a SHIP counselor. "The Medicare Counselors help... get you the cheapest program, the program that works best for you."

The local, unbiased, and trusted support can literally be a lifesaver, said Francine Dent, who was overwhelmed by trying to navigate Medicare once she retired from a school system job.

"I really do apprececiate the fact that they take us seriously," Dent said. "If this service were not available, I think that I would have been in worse shape than I am now." 

Said SHIP volunteer Charles Reese, “When I talk to people and I can save them a $100 here or $100 there, I can feel them smiling; I can feel them feeling better about life. I think that’s very important.”

Depending on where you live, the SHIP program might also be known as:

  • DMAB
  • HICP
  • I-CARE
  • MAP
  • MMAP, Inc.

To get help or learn more, visit the SHIP website, email, or call the SHIP National Technical Assistance Center toll free at 877-839-2675.