Medicare :: Education and Outreach For Medicare Part D

My Medicare Matters TM, which is sponsored by the National Council on Aging (NCOA) and supported through a grant from AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP (NYSE: AZN), announced today its targeted community-based education and outreach initiatives in 2007 in support of Medicare Part-D, which will include a project designed to identify and pilot innovative strategies that can help find and reach low-income seniors who may be eligible for Medicare Extra Help and other prescription savings programs.

The announcement was made today at the U.S. Administration on Aging (AoA) Choices for Independence: A National Leadership Summit. Representatives of NCOA and AstraZeneca said the primary goal of this grant program is to find effective and cost-efficient ways to find, educate and enroll Medicare beneficiaries with limited incomes and resources into the Extra Help, available through the Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage, as well as other public and private prescription and health care assistance programs.

My Medicare Matters has allocated up to $900,000 to fund 5-10 grants and the project is expected to run through the end of 2007. Grant applications are available on and proposals are due by Friday, January 5, 2007.

?Efforts like My Medicare Matters are helping the elderly and persons with disabilities to find out and understand why they need to enroll in Part D, if they haven?t already,? said NCOA President and CEO James Firman. ?Having the right medicine can keep people healthy and independent.?

Recognizing that more than three million people with limited income and resources have not yet applied for Part D, My Medicare Matters is also making a special effort to donate technology to organizations located within the top 100 counties where CMS estimates that the remaining Medicare beneficiaries with limited resources reside. To date, more than 300 organizations have received technology they are using to access Web-based tools. In addition, My Medicare Matters updated its award-winning web site (, designed to make it easier for people to navigate the wealth of information about Medicare Part D and to make informed decisions about Medicare prescription drug coverage.

?Like NCOA, we share a concern that the most needy are not enrolled in Part D, so we are committed to this new effort to reach those individuals? said Roger Hyde, Vice President, Managed Markets, AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP. ?This ongoing initiative, coupled with our own patient assistance programs, is part of AstraZeneca?s overall goal to address affordability and access issues.?

During the first open enrollment period, My Medicare Matters educators worked side-by-side with thousands of community-based groups to provide one-on-one help sessions to more than 210,000 people with Medicare. More than one million people used its web site and to date, more than 630 wireless laptops have been distributed to community organizations that are helping educate people with Medicare about Part D.

?During phase one of this campaign, we saw firsthand the valuable role of trusted local organizations in helping reach and teach people with Medicare and their families,? said Wendy Zenker, NCOA vice president of Mobilization. ?We also learned that organizations need the latest wireless technology and easy-to-understand Web-based information to help people assess their situation, understand their choices and make the decision that is right for them.?

Beyond the current enrollment season, both NCOA and AstraZeneca are looking at future opportunities to make a meaningful difference in helping people with Medicare, including exploring collaborations with other organizations that share a commitment to this important area.

About My Medicare Matters

My Medicare Matters is a community-based education and outreach initiative whose goal is to help people with Medicare and their families better understand the Medicare prescription drug coverage so that they can assess their personal situation, understand their choices, compare plan options and make decisions they believe are right for their health and financial situation. My Medicare Matters is sponsored by the National Council on Aging and Access to Benefits Coalition with support from AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals LP.

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