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About The SHINE Program



The SHINE (Serving the Health Insurance Needs of Everyone) Program provides free health insurance information and counseling to all Massachusetts residents with Medicare and their caregivers.

People who have Medicare or who are about to become eligible for Medicare can meet with a certified SHINE counselor to learn about benefits and options available and get guidance with choosing a plan that best fits your needs. One size does not fit all when it comes to Medicare. Factors such as health conditions, lifestyle preferences, and financial resources have varying effects on what plan is the best for each individual.

SHINE counselors are trained and certified each year through the Executive Office of Elder Affairs in the various options available to Medicare beneficiaries – including:

Medicare Parts A & B Eligibility & Enrollment
Medicare Advantage (Part C) Medigap Supplements
Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage Part B Premium Assistance
Extra Help (LIS) and Prescription Advantage MassHealth
and other programs for people with limited resources that help with paying for health care costs

If you would like to volunteer for the SHINE program, or are interested in recruiting a SHINE Counselor for your site, call your local SHINE Program Director at

 (800) 243-4636; press 3, if calling from a landline or press 5, if calling from cell phone.

  or click here to be redirected to the Massachusetts State SHINE Program site.

  • SHINE Counselors help Medicare beneficiaries and their caregivers navigate the complex health insurance system.
  • A SHINE Counselor can explain Medicare options and how Medicare works in everyday language.
  • A SHINE Counselor can help compare the costs and benefits of Medicare and other health insurance options and help you enroll in a health insurance program that best fits your needs.
  • A SHINE Counselor can help people with limited resources enroll in programs that help pay health insurance costs.
  • A SHINE Counselor can help answer some of the following commonly asked questions.
    • What does Medicare pay for?
    • When should I enroll?
    • How do I avoid a late enrollment penalty?
    • Which parts of Medicare do I need?
    • What is “Medigap” insurance?
    • What is a Medicare HMO or Medicare Advantage Plan?
    • Is Medicare Advantage right for me?
    • Which Part D Plan (PDP) will cover my drugs?
    • Can I get help paying for my Medicare costs?
    • Do I qualify for MassHealth/Medicaid?
    • Why did I receive a bill after seeing my doctor?
    • How do I appeal a Medicare denial?
    • Why wasn’t my drug paid for when I went to the pharmacy?
    • Will Medicare pay for my nursing home stay?

Local Senior Centers/Councils on Aging, Hospitals, Elder Service Organizations, are the most common agencies that provide health insurance counseling to Medicare recipients through the Massachusetts SHINE program.

To book an appointment with a SHINE counselor at the Danvers Senior Center, call 978-762-0208, Monday through Friday, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm,  or click here to find a SHINE counselor near you.

       DCOA SHINE Counseling Hours



Joseph Younger Tuesdays 9:00, 10:00, and 11:00 AM Call 978-762-0208 during regular business hours* to book a SHINE appointment or stop at the front desk of the Senior Center
Lisa Westrate contact directly 978-762-0208 x105

* The Danvers Senior Center is open Monday – Friday from 8 am to 4 pm.




What the SHINE Program Can Do For You

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