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Beat May 15 deadline for Medicare Part D sign-ups

November 30, 1999

It's getting late, but it's not too late yet.

That's the word from Katrina Eversole, health insurance advocate for the Senior Health Insurance Program.

Eversole has spent months working to get senior citizens and other Medicare-eligible people enrolled in the Medicare Part D prescription drug program, but warns that the deadline to sign up is May 15, only two weeks away.

Those who don't sign up by that date will pay a penalty on their monthly premium if and when they do enroll in the Part D program.

Fortunately, Medicare-eligible citizens will have at least three more enrollment events to get help in choosing one of the many prescription plans available in Maryland.

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The times, dates and locations include:

Tomorrow, Tuesday, May 2, at Washington County Free Library in downtown Hagerstown, from 1 to 4 p.m.

Tuesday, May 9, at the Washington County Free Library, from 1 to 4 p.m.

Both of the library events will be held on an upper floor, so please go to the front desk and ask for information on how to use the elevator.

Saturday, May 13, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., in the computer lab of the Advanced Technology Center at Hagerstown Community College.

For all three events, Medicare-eligible people are asked to bring their Medicare card and a list of their prescription medicines and the dosages. If it's easier, just bring the prescription pill bottles with you.

The May 13 event at HCC will be one part of the "Celebrating the Generations Expo," which is the new name for the former Senior Fair.

The Commission on Aging is holding it on the weekend and adding events for all ages in hopes of attracting members of the "baby boom" generation, the oldest members of which are now turning 60.

Most Expo events will be held in the ARCC. They will feature information, health screenings, food, door prizes, craft vendors, a car show and games for children.

It sounds like fun, but the Part D signup is serious business. Because it's so close to the deadline, no one-on-one counseling will be available, except at these events. If you or one of your relatives hasn't signed up yet, attend one of these events and do so.

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