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Senators speak at the annual Medicare counselor training August 2012

Senators Mark Begich (Alaska) and Ron Wyden (Oregon) spoke to the group of 65 Medicare counselors on the Preventive Wellness Visits, emphasizing the importance of assisting people with understanding this valuable new benefit under Medicare. They discussed initiatives they have been involved in through their work in Congress and expressed deep appreciation and support for what the state SHIPS do to educate beneficiaries about Medicare, problem-solve when complex questions and situations arise, and help people protect Medicare from fraud, waste and abuse.

Andrew Tartella, the external affairs liaison from CMS Region X in Seattle was a trainer with the counselors throughout the three days.

Medicare Counselors win awards.

Medicare counselor award winners: Jim Trombley and Kathy Romain, Kenai; Laurie Murdock, Kodiak; Lori Engler, Kenai; Shirley Kowchee, Bethel, and Elena Rath and Bernice Metcalf, Ketchikan. Not pictured is Wintersun Youngblood, Mat-Su Senior Center.

Counselors from ADRC.

Pictured at left are some of the attendees of the annual Medicare counselor training with
the Medicare mascot:

Thomas Gardiner, Bristol Bay ADRC
Sheila Baker, Anchorage ADRC
Lori Engler, Kenai Peninsula ADRC
Karla Wright, Anchorage ADRC
Anna Mae Bartholomew, Bristol Bay ADRC

Senators Ron Wyden and Mark Begich with certificates.

Senators Ron Wyden (Oregon) and Mark Begich (Alaska) accepting certificates of appreciation and gifts of coffee mugs and canned Alaskan salmon from Medicare program director, Judith Bendersky. 

Seattle Medicare counselor trainer, Andrew Tartella.

Andrew Tartella speaks to the counselors.