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AARP Colorado, April 7, 2010
“Extra Help" is a special part of Medicare drug coverage that gives much more assistance to people with limited incomes than the regular program does. If you qualify, you can save a lot of money. If you qualify for “full” Extra Help, you receive coverage throughout the year (no doughnut hole) and pay very little for your prescriptions. If you qualify for “partial” Extra Help, you receive coverage throughout the year and pay a reduced premium and deductible and up to 15 percent of the cost of your drugs.
To qualify for Extra Help your annual income in 2009 must be limited to $16,245 for an individual or $21,855 for a married couple living together. (Even if your annual income is higher, you still may be able to get some help.)Your resources must be limited to $12,510 for an individual or $25,010 for a married couple living together. Resources include such things as bank accounts, stocks, and bonds. Your house and car don’t count as resources.
You can apply by:
• Apply online. www.socialsecurity.gov;
• Call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) to apply over the phone or to request that an application be mailed to you; or
• Apply at your local Social Security office.
You can also ask for free interpreter services in any language when you call Social Security’s help line (press 2 for Spanish or 1 for any other language) or when you arrange to visit a local office.
You can also apply with the help of a counselor at the Colorado State Health Insurance Counseling Program (SHIP) by calling 303-899-5151 (Metropolitan Denver Area Calls Only) or 800-544-9181 (Other In-State Calls).
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