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DOH NEWS RELEASE: Hawai‘i State Executive Office on Aging provides resources for kupuna to prepare for Medicare’s annual open enrollment period from Oct. 15 to Dec. 7

Posted on Aug 24, 2021 in Latest News, Newsroom

HONOLULU – Medicare is the federal health insurance program to help pay for healthcare services for kupuna 65 years and older as well as those with disabilities or end-stage renal disease. The valuable program has many different components and can be challenging to understand and navigate. It is also difficult to know who to trust for objective, non-commercial information.

The Hawai‘i State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP), which is part of the state’s Executive Office on Aging, has provided local, trusted, and unbiased Medicare help for Hawai‘i residents for nearly 30 years. SHIP is offering a number of resources for kupuna in safe, socially distanced venues, including phone consultations and virtual meetings to prepare for Medicare’s annual open enrollment period from Oct. 15 to Dec. 7, 2021.

The open enrollment period offers Medicare beneficiaries the opportunity to review their healthcare needs and current Medicare plan to determine if they would like to keep their plan or change to another one. It’s also an opportunity for new Medicare beneficiaries to sign up for a plan.

  • Virtual Open House Tuesday, Sept. 7, 2021 10 a.m. – 11 a.m. Hawaii SHIP will hold its first virtual open house on Tuesday, Sept. 7, 2021, from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. Visitors will learn about the benefits of joining Hawaii SHIP as a potential volunteer or partner. Register at:
  • “Project Grad 65”

Monday, Sept. 13, 2021

11 a.m. – 1 p.m. “Project Grad 65” is a virtual joint presentation by Hawaii SHIP and the Honolulu office of the Social Security Administration on Monday, Sept. 13, 2021, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.  The presentation is designed for individuals turning 65 and “graduating” into Medicare or for those recently enrolled in Medicare. Topics will include Social Security benefits and Medicare Basics. Register at:

  • Phone consultations SHIP’s certified counselors are available to review the current plans and healthcare needs of Medicare beneficiaries and provide updates to original Medicare (Parts A & B), Medicare Advantage (Part C), and Prescription Drug Plans (Part D) for 2022.

Make phone or Zoom counseling appointments through the Hawaii SHIP website at or by calling the Hawaii SHIP Helpline at (808) 586-7299 or toll-free: 1-888-875-9229. The pre-recorded message on the Hawaii SHIP Helpline asks to leave your name, phone number, email address, zip code, a brief message about your question, and the days and times you prefer to be called. A Medicare counselor will contact those who have made an appointment within two to five business days.

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