Recently North Carolina Insurance Commissioner Mike Causey announced that the Seniors’ Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP) saved the state’s seniors $30 million last year.

Many retirees and Medicare beneficiaries on a fixed income want to save money wherever they can. Each year, thousands of people contact the Seniors’ Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP) throughout the state to help them identify savings in their Medicare coverages.

Throughout the year, but particularly during the Medicare Open Enrollment period from Oct. 15 to Dec. 7, Medicare beneficiaries are urged to compare their current coverage for the Part D prescription drug plan to determine if their current plan is still the most appropriate for the coming year. Each year formularies change, prices change and programs change. Often, Medicare beneficiaries are unaware of the differences.

SHIIP is a division of the North Carolina Department of Insurance that assists people with Medicare, Medicare Part D, Medicare supplement, Medicare Advantage and long-term care insurance questions. They also help people recognize and prevent Medicare billing errors and possible fraud and abuse through the N.C. Senior Medicare Patrol program.

For questions about Medicare or the Extra Help program, contact SHIIP at 1-855-408-1212 or contact the Services for the Aged at 910-296-2140 to make an appointment and ask for SHIIP help.