Many government programs can help older adults save money and improve their health. Unfortunately, those who are eligible often do not apply because they are not sure how the programs work, whether there is a “down side” to getting benefits or how to complete the applications. The good news is that help is available! Our HelpLine staff can provide assistance over the phone and in some instances a staff member can come to an elder’s home to help with an application. We also give presentations to community groups.
The following are some of the programs that can help older adults who are financially eligible:
Help with Medicare and Prescription Drugs. Medicare assistance programs may cover the costs of Medicare Part A and Part B premiums, co-payments and deductibles. Assistance is also available with prescription drug coverage or with the cost of prescription medicines, premiums, deductibles and co-payments.
The 3SquaresVT program (formerly known as Food Stamps)
pays for food from most grocery stores and other food retailers. The amount of assistance provided depends on household income, number of people in the household and place of residence. Medicaid is a government-funded health insurance program that provides coverage to people over 65 (and various other populations) based on need.
Choices for Care is a special Medicaid program that provides health care, personal assistance and supportive services that can enable those over 65 or adults with disabilities who need long-term care to stay in their own homes and avoid nursing home placement.
Fuel Assistance (Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program or “LIHEAP”) provides an annual cash grant to help meet home heating and cooling costs. Grants can be used for attic insulation, floors, exposed water pipes, and the tune up, repair, or replacement of heating units or air conditioners in your home.
Vermont Supplemental Income Program provides an additional cash benefit beyond what the federal government gives through Supplemental Security Income (SSI). This program provides assistance to those who are 65 years of age or older, blind, or disabled.
Assistance is available through the HelpLine at 1-802-885-2669 / 1-866-673-8376 (toll-free)