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Whether you want to work with individuals on their Medicare issues, promote community awareness or assist with administrative support, the Medicare SHIP team needs your help!

Medicare Volunteer

• Help people find their way through Medicare and related health insurance programs • Provide one-on-one counseling and assistance

Medicare Part D Volunteer

• Help people navigate Medicare prescription drug coverage • Use Internet-based programs to compare prescription drug plan options

Outreach Assistant

• Promote community awareness about the Southeast Tennessee SHIP/SMP and its services • Educate the public about Medicare and related health insurance programs

Program Assistant

• Provide administrative support • Help with data entry, filing and mailing information to clients

SHIP c/o Southeast Tennessee Development District 1000 Riverfront Parkway Chattanooga, TN 37402

For more information on volunteering with SHIP contact Tommy Preston at 423-424-4252 or tpreston@sedev.org.

This publication has been created by Tennessee with financial assistance, in whole or in part, through a grant from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the federal Medicare agency.

Volunteer Opportunities

Take the confusion out of Medicare.

Become a SHIP Medicare Volunteer!


What is SHIP? The Tennessee State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) is a statewide program that provides free and objective counseling and assistance to persons with questions or problems regarding Medicare and other related health insurances. In Tennessee, SHIP is sponsored by the Tennessee Commission on Aging and Disability and the statewide Area Agency on Aging and Disability network. SHIP started in 1990 and is funded through a federal grant from the Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services. Currently, there are SHIPs in all 50 states plus Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

What do SHIP Volunteers do? After completing training to be a certfited Medicare counselor, SHIP volunteers provide assistance and help answer questions in their own communities. SHIP volunteers help answer questions about Medicare, Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap), Medicare Advantage Plans, Medicaid, Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage (Part D) and long-term care insurance.

What services are provided?

As the number of people with Medicare who require informational assistance continues to grow, SHIP volunteers play an important role in helping people on Medicare and others understand and navigate the many changes and information related to the program. The SHIP program provides people with the tools and information they need to make the best decisions about their health care.

SHIP volunteers typically:

• Help evaluate Medicare options • Make referrals to appropriate agencies • Help enrollees make informed decisions • Provide information counseling through one-on-one visits or telephone • Community outreach through presentations, health fairs and trainings

We need YOU! SHIP needs enthusiastic volunteers who want to learn about Medicare and help others find their way in the maze that Medicare sometimes becomes for them. With the exception of licensed insurance agents, anyone can be a SHIP volunteer. SHIP Volunteers receive an initial training and continuous ongoing support from SHIP staff. The program requires documented outreach and counseling attempts from its volunteers during each grant year. SHIP counselors are committed to offer people free and unbiased information about Medicare.

For more information on volunteering with SHIP contact Tommy Preston at 423-424-4252 or tpreston@sedev.org.


TN SHIP Volunteer brochure