Information and Referral

We’re here to help you find answers and connect you to resources. We’ve been providing answers and guidance to seniors and families since 1973. If you or an older loved one needs assistance, our experts on aging can help!

Senior HelpLine

JCA can help you find the senior services you need within the Greater Washington, D.C. area — housing, home care, recreation and more — through the Rose Benté Lee Senior HelpLine and the Steven M. Reich HomeCare Resource Center.

To talk with an Information & Referral Specialist, call us at 240.290.3311 or 703.652.1515, or send an email.

State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)

SHIP provides Montgomery County seniors and adults under 65 with long term disabilities with health insurance counseling, enrollment guidance and assistance and problem resolution for issues relating to Medicare benefits and other public and private health insurance sources. JCA holds the contract for SHIP, which operates out of its Rockville office.

Education and counseling is available on health insurance options and decisions, as well as fraud and abuse prevention in Medicare and Medicaid.

Staff and trained volunteers are available to help with understanding Medicare — Part A, Part B, Part C and Part D. Assistance can range from help in selecting a Prescription Drug plan to eligibility for extra help in paying for Medicare.

To contact the SHIP program, call 301.255.4250. Visit the SHIP website for more information.

Did you get this letter in the mail? There is no need to panic!

Surprise! Your Insurance Coverage Changed: Seven Steps to Choosing the Best Medicare Part D Plan for You.

If you are one of the beneficiaries of the Maryland Employee and Retiree Health and Welfare Benefits Program who received a letter warning you about changes to retiree prescription drug benefits plan, here’s what you need to know: Your coverage is good until December 31, 2018.

To avoid a gap in your prescription drug coverage in 2019, you should enroll in a Medicare Part D plan during the open enrollment period October 15-December 7. As Part D plans change annually, you will not be able to assess the best plan for you until October when the new drug plans are made public.

You may research your own best plan options by preparing a list of your prescription drugs. Then, go the Medicare Plan Finder ( and enter your information, list of prescription drugs, and pharmacy. The website will help you identify your potential costs such as monthly premiums and benefits, copays and insurance, drug formularies and restrictions such as quantity limits, prior authorization and step therapy.

According to Rafael Espinoza the director of the Montgomery County State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP), “When shopping for the best plan for you, keep in mind that your lowest premium may not be your best option or lowest annual cost.”/p>

If you need help with Medicare Plan D prescription drug analysis, experts at SHIP offer this confidential service for FREE. Montgomery County residents should call their SHIP representative at: 301-255-4250. Last year, SHIP helped 148 clients potentially save $366,652 through plan analysis that offered them economical choices that informed their Medicare Part D prescription drug plan decisions.

JCA Website

Sections of this website also offer a variety of resources that may answer some of your questions. For instance, see our Resources page or download a free Senior Resources Roadmap.

Speakers Bureau

JCA also operates a Community Speakers Bureau that serves Washington, D.C., suburban Maryland and Northern Virginia. For ideas and information about expos and workshops on aging well, call us at 301.255.4200 or 703.425.0999, or send an email.