2004

Make Medicare Work Coalition

Make Medicare Work Coalition logoCo-founded by HDA, AgeOptions and Progress Center for Independent Living, this coalition continues to promote access to affordable health care options in Illinois.

A collaboration to address issues such as the “donut hole” arising from the new Medicare Part D prescription drug benefit and other aspects of the 2004 Medicare Modernization Act was the starting point of Make Medicare Work Coalition. MMW brought together service providers and advocates for older adults and people with disabilities to educate and assist Medicare consumers and their families to help them understand their options, choose and enroll in programs, and solve problems.

MMW membership has grown to over 700 people representing 270 agencies, and the mission has expanded beyond responding to new laws to maximizing the number of people with Medicare who are successfully enrolled in programs that provide affordable access to the health care and prescription drugs they need. A recent focus has been effective coordination between the state, Managed Care Organizations, and community based providers as the state transitions people with disabilities and older adults into Medicaid care coordination. Firsthand familiarity with consumers’ practical experiences allowed for sharing with policymakers to promote system-wide changes. MMW’s annual advocacy summit offers resources and tools to help clients navigate the health delivery system and updates on crucial advocacy issues.

MMW was created through generous support of the Michael Reese Health Trust, the Retirement Research Foundation, and the Chicago Community Trust.

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