Contra Costa County HICAP Volunteer Counselor Job Description
Position: Medicare Counselor
Goal of the Position:
To provide no-cost, one-on-one health insurance counseling and advocacy services to older and disabled adults by assisting them in understanding their Medicare and related insurance coverage and consumer rights, and evaluating their needs for insurance policies and health care plans. This counseling is offered by phone normally from the Pleasant Hill office, by Zoom or email, and at Senior Centers and other outreach sites throughout Contra Costa County, or occasionally in the home for homebound clients.
Provide counseling and advocacy services related to Medicare and supplemental insurance including HMO’s, long term care issues, and appeals of claim denials. Tasks and other responsibilities include:
- Educating clients on how and when to enroll in Medicare and related coverage
- Comparing and evaluating Medicare supplemental, employer and retiree health insurance policies and Medicare HMO plans
- Assisting clients in handling problems with Medicare and related health insurance benefits
- Appealing claim denials to appropriate resources when necessary
- Following up on cases as needed
- Entering computerized intakes on all client contacts and submitting timely monthly reports to program staff
Tasks volunteers may also perform with additional training include:
- Counseling on long-term care insurance
- Community education presentations to local groups
Minimum 10 hours per month for one year. Hours worked are flexible, but a consistent schedule is required. 30+ hours of classroom and computer training and minimum 10 hours of internship are required before becoming a registered counselor. Once registered, initial counseling will be supervised. Regular attendance at ongoing monthly in-service training is also required.
- Concern for the needs of older and disabled adults
- Willingness to deal with complex cases
- Desire to continually learn and keep abreast of detailed, complex information
- Ability to understand and communicate complex information in language that people of all abilities can understand
- Attention to detail
- Willingness to update skills by attending training
- Commitment to counsel on a regular basis
- Comfortable using the computer
Counselor will be assigned to phone counseling at the Pleasant Hill HICAP office initially and possibly also to one of the various counseling sites located throughout Contra Costa County. Every effort is made to consider counselor’s needs and preferences in making site assignments.
Benefits for volunteers:
- Personal contact with those who need assistance
- Development of rewarding skills
- Application of problem-solving skills
- Continued learning
Return to Volunteers Needed page
Click here to submit a volunteer interest form and we will add you to our list of prospective volunteers and contact you when we’re ready to schedule the next training.