The U.S. House Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education recently approved a bill that would provide funding for the State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) at the current level of $52.1 million, a measure applauded by the Medicare Rights Center. This comes after the Senate Appropriations Committee recently proposed eliminating SHIP funding altogether.
The SHIP is the only resource that provides free, personalized, unbiased counseling on the growing complexities of Medicare coverage. Eliminating the SHIP would leave millions of older Americans, people with disabilities, and families who need help comparing coverage options, appealing denials, applying for financial assistance, and navigating their Medicare coverage—with nowhere to turn.
In the months ahead, it is imperative that Congress adopt or improve on the House Subcommittee proposal to provide SHIP funding at the current level.
Next week, the full House Committee on Appropriations will vote on SHIP funding. Led by the National Council on Aging, the Medicare Rights Center and 63 other groups sent a letter to the House Committee urging them to protect SHIP funding and provide the support and assistance needed by older adults, people with disabilities, and families by, at a minimum, retaining SHIP funding at the current level.
It’s not too late to make your voice heard. Join us in writing your elected officials about the importance of the SHIP program. Ask them to protect SHIP funding for millions of people with Medicare!