STATE COLLEGE, Pa., April 30, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Pennsylvania Department of Aging this week recognized six outstanding programs and individuals for their service to older Pennsylvanians. The BRAVO awards were presented at the APPRISE Annual Conference. The theme for this year's conference was "Diversity: Strength lies in differences, not in similarities".
APPRISE is Pennsylvania's State Health Insurance Program. It provides free health insurance counseling intended to help Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries understand their insurance benefits and coverage. Trained volunteers and staff also assist beneficiaries with comparing Medicare prescription drug plans, as well as filing appeals and grievances and providing them with information about quality of care in Medicare HMOs, Medicare supplemental insurance and long-term care insurance.
"APPRISE is an invaluable program that is available throughout all 67 counties of our Commonwealth," said Acting Secretary of Aging Teresa Osborne. "The dedication and incredible efforts of our network of APPRISE volunteers and staff to provide free and unbiased health insurance counseling ensures that older Pennsylvanians are empowered to make informed choices about their health insurance."
Programs and individuals receiving the BRAVO awards include:
Joanne McDermitt, Beaver County was awarded the Secretary Award, the most prestigious award for an APPRISE local coordinator to receive. She earned the award for all-around excellence in the areas of collaboration, innovation, performance and client service for the Beaver County Area Agency on Aging.
Glenda Radical, Delaware County received the Collaboration Award for her outstanding collaborative efforts with local programs, government entities, community businesses and organizations, and healthcare systems.
Sandra Darlington, Columbia/Montour Counties was awarded the Performance Award for her passion and commitment to the program by offering special attention to every client contact; as well as offering education and assistance to her clients.
Sandra Fennell, Armstrong County received the Client Service Award for her demonstrated patience and concern for APPRISE clients. Her counseling style adjusts to the pace and understanding of each client in order to ensure the client receives the information they need to make informed decisions in choosing health insurance that meets their needs.
William McKendree, Allegheny County received the Innovation Award for his commitment and dedication to increasing the number of clients served each year by the APPRISE program, as well as improving the quality of the service. McKendree provided an innovative solution by creating client counseling teams that helped serve more clients in an efficient manner.
Holly Irvine, Bradford, Sullivan, Susquehanna and Tioga Counties was awarded the Delta Award for diligence and hard work that resulted in marked performance improvement in their program. Under her leadership and guidance, these counties have met performance measures of the APPRISE program. In addition, she has the ability find creative approaches to serve her counties' clients.
The BRAVO Awards honor local APPRISE program local coordinators for their exceptional leadership in areas of client service, program performance, collaboration with community partners and innovation.
This July will mark the 50th Anniversary of the creation of the national Medicare Program. The Department of Aging's APPRISE Program joins the national Medicare Program in recognizing this important milestone.
For more information on the APPRISE program, please visit aging.pa.gov
Media contact: Christina Reese, 717.783.1550
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Aging