Health and Prescription Drug Coverage

Q. The Medicare Part D / EPIC Project: What Is It?

A. Part of the NY StateWide Senior Action Council’s Affordable Medicine Program

The NY StateWide Senior Action Council has launched its Medicare/EPIC Project to help New York seniors better understand how the Medicare Part D works together with EPIC, and other drug benefit programs, so that they can make informed decisions about their drug coverage.

The Medicare/EPIC program went into effect in July 2007. As it moves forward, StateWide will be there to help seniors make the best choices for themselves regarding their drug coverage.

Under a grant from the New York State Office for the Aging, and together with other community and advocacy organizations – like the Medicare Rights Center – known for caring about seniors and their health, StateWide is working to help keep Medicare beneficiaries well informed.

Q. What is the Medicare/EPIC Project?

A. It involves a three-pronged approach.

Meeting with Seniors

The Medicare/EPIC Project is reaching out to seniors around the state to help them select from among the different Medicare Part D plans and drug formularies,  to find those that best fits their needs that best suit their needs. The project also offers counseling to seniors seeking more information about  how EPIC and Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plans work together.  If you would like to ask a StateWide representative to speak to your senior or caregiver group about the Medicare/EPIC program, please contact StateWide by phone at (518) 436-1006 or e-mail at info@nysenior.org.

Operating a Toll-Free Helpline

Our toll-free Patients Rights Helpline is in operation from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. It is equipped to take your calls, answer your questions, and refer you to the resources most appropriate to your needs. It can be reached at (800) 333-4374.

Staffing a StateWide Monitoring Team

A trained and informed team of monitors will be watching closely how the Medicare private drug plans meet seniors’ needs. Monitors will meet and talk with seniors in their own communities, get regular updates from experts on the Medicare law, and stay in touch with their local Offices for the Aging. Many monitors are now serving as – or are considering becoming – volunteers or counselors for HIICAP (the Health Insurance Information, Counseling and Assistance Program). For more information on becoming a monitor or a HIICAP program counselor, call StateWide at (518) 436-1006.