While healthcare changes from year to year, some things do remain the same. One constant in local healthcare has been free Medicare and insurance counseling provided by Lorna Legreid at Passavant Hospital. Lorna has helped generations of people navigate through the complex realm of medical coverage.
Making the transition from employer based insurance coverage to Medicare is not always easy. Often, a 1-800 number is the only means of advice and assistance. Some thirty years ago, even though there was no internet and fewer coverage options, people had just as much difficulty understanding the intricacies of health care coverage as they do today.
Lorna Legreid, Medicare and Insurance Counselor, tells me that people would show up to the hospital’s business office with brown paper grocery sacks full of paperwork and bills, hoping someone could sit down and explain their claims and coverage and make sure everyone got paid. The hospital recognized the need to employ a counselor who could help these people understand their coverage and their options, and Lorna was the girl for the job!
Since then, Lorna has been counseling people who are new to Medicare or have questions about their private or employer insurance policies. Some are approaching Medicare eligibility and exploring their options, some want to know about Medicare replacement programs. Other clients are still working and have employer insurance, but have questions about their options for the future. Some have questions about various parts of Medicare, such as Part D. Lorna sees people by appointment, helps as they come in to pay their hospital bills, and also sees inpatients.
Not all healthcare facilities offer this service; a Medicare Insurance Consultant is sort of a unique feature to our community. Lorna says that she gets a great deal of satisfaction from helping people. In fact, that’s her favorite part of the job. And the people she serves are grateful for her, too. I lovingly refer to Lorna’s clients as her “fan club.” They all appreciate her knowledge and support so much that the phones ring off the hook when she offers a program and many of her former clients stop in to see her when they come to the hospital to pay a bill. Lorna says that more and more often, she is seeing people whose parents she helped years ago.
In addition to this service, Lorna also helps counsel recipients of financial assistance, helps with healthcare power of attorney documents, and she is a notary. Each year, she offers Medicare Update programs that are open to the community or to private groups. If you would like to schedule Lorna to come and speak with your group, you can do so by calling 217-245-9541 extension 3296. To schedule a Medicare of Insurance counseling appointment, you can call Lorna directly at 217-479-5573.