Q. My Medicare prescription drug plan is not meeting my needs. Who can I talk to?
A. West Virginia SHIP (Senior Health Insurance Assistance Program) has a statewide toll free number (1-877-987-4463) that anyone can call to receive expert advice from a SHIP counselor.
Q. I am currently receiving in-home services but feel like I need more. What is the process for requesting additional hours of service?
A. Call the Bureau of Senior Services’ Medicaid Aged and Disabled Waiver helpline toll-free at 1-866-767-1575 if you are receiving Medicaid Waiver or Personal Care services. If you are receiving FAIR or Lighthouse in-home services, please call the Bureau’s toll-free line at 1-877-987-3646.
Q. How can I get answers to "end-of-life" questions?
A. Free legal advice is available from West Virginia Senior Legal Aid. Their toll-free number is 1-800-229-5068 and their website is www.seniorlegalaid.com. State of West Virginia medical power of attorney and living will forms that you can download or print, plus information on end-of-life care and treatment options is available on the West Virginia Center for End-of-Life Care website.
Q. My parents live in West Virginia, but I live out-of-state. How do I find out about services available to them?
A. By contacting the Aging & Disability Resource Center in the area in which your parents live, you can receive information on services for which they may be eligible. Professionals at the ADRCs are available to talk with you and to contact your parents if you would like. Also, you may call the county aging provider (senior center) in their county to determine what services the center provides. Additionally, please click on your parents’ county of residence on the Bureau of Senior Services’ interactive map for local resources.
Q. Can you help me find the nearest Social Security office?
A. You can use Social Security’s online office locator to find the office that serves your zip code.
Q. Is there transportation help for seniors?
A. You can call your county aging provider (senior center) for transportation assistance. For information about public transit, contact the West Virginia Department of Transportation, Division of Public Transit, at 304-558-0428, or access their online Transportation Providers Directory.
Q. Who can I talk to about locating a place to live?
A. Call the Bureau of Senior Services toll-free at 1-877-987-3646 to discuss the various types of housing options available in West Virginia, or contact us. Additionally, you may contact your regional Aging & Disability Resource Center or county aging provider (senior center) to find out what is available in your area.
Q. I have concerns about a relative who lives in a nursing home. Is there someone who can look into them?
A. Our State Long-Term Care Ombudsman would be glad to investigate any complaints, or you may call the Ombudsman who serves the county of the nursing home.
Q. My mother has Alzheimer’s disease and I would like to learn more about it and to see if there are any services that can help me.
A. Call the Bureau of Senior Services toll-free at 1-877-987-3646 to discuss Alzheimer’s disease and the respite and support programs that may be available to you and your mother. You may also contact the Alzheimer’s Association toll-free at 1-800-272-3900 and request educational material or information about support groups.
Q. How can I get help with writing my will?
A. Call West Virginia Senior Legal Aid at 1-800-229-5068 with any questions or to request information. Their web site is www.seniorlegalaid.com.
Q. What is the Senior Citizens Tax Credit? Is it related to the Homestead Exemption Program?
A. Seniors who are eligible for the Homestead Exemption Program (age 65+ or totally disabled) may be entitled to a refundable income tax credit. For tax year 2009, the credit is based on the amount of property taxes paid on the first $20,000, or portion thereof, of the taxable assessed value over the $20,000 Homestead Exemption. Seniors must file a West Virginia income tax return to claim the credit. To apply for the Homestead Exemption Program, contact your county assessor’s office.
Q. My mother requires some assistance now and may need more help in the future. How do I find out what resources are available, so that I can determine what level of care would be most appropriate for her now and also later on?
A. For help at home and in your community, you can contact your county senior center. To find out what resources are available across the continuum of care – at home, in your community, in assisted living communities, and in nursing facilities – and whom to contact for more information about each, please contact the West Virginia Bureau of Senior Services for a copy of the 2011–2012 Consumer Guide: Helping Families Make Informed Choices About Care. You can also download the online version.
There may be other agencies and organizations in your community that provide similar or additional services not listed in the guide. Your nearest Aging and Disability Resource Center will have information about those agencies and organizations.