A report from the National Council on Aging (NCOA) and the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging says that millions of seniors are missing out on over $20 billion in benefits simply because they are unaware these benefits are available.
The two organizations are responsible for a website – www.eldercare.gov – that connects senior with services that can provide assistance. NCOA also runs a website where seniors can see which government programs they qualify for at www.benefitscheckup.org.
In 2011, screenings on the BenefitsCheckUp website identified more than $1.2 billion in benefits that users were eligible to receive but are not getting. One-third of those were already enrolled in one benefit, but were eligible for other benefits they were not receiving.
Some of the benefits being missed include:
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which provides access to nutritious food;
Medicare and Medicaid assistance for health care;
Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), for assistance with heating and cooling costs;
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) – provides a minimal source of income.
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