Lynne A. Valenti
Cabinet Secretary

DSS Mobile Logo Mobile Menu Button
July 6, 2009

SHIINE seeks local volunteers

PIERRE, S.D. The South Dakota Senior Health Information and Insurance Education (SHIINE) program is currently seeking local volunteers to help seniors with their Medicare questions. Volunteers will receive training on all parts of Medicare and learn how to provide one-on-one Medicare counseling.

Administered by the SD Department of Social Services, SHIINE is a federally-funded program that advocates for, educates and assists consumers with Medicare and related health information, to allow consumers to make timely and informed decisions and access necessary resources. The program is free for eligible seniors.

Volunteer counselors are vital to the success of the program, as they provide an opportunity for seniors to discuss their Medicare questions and concerns in person. All services are unbiased and confidential.

Volunteers are most active during Part D open enrollment in November and December, and during Medicare Advantage open enrollment in January through March. Recruiting volunteers now allows enough time to train and locate places for volunteers to work before November.

Training includes all parts of Medicare, how to counsel people individually, how to provide referrals, and how to best convey information about Medicare to small groups.  Interested candidates should be comfortable using a computer, the Internet, and meeting with individuals in a public location like a   library or senior center. Volunteers will be able to choose the hours they would like to provide services.    Volunteers may not hold a current license to sell Medicare-related health insurance.

For more information on SHIINE or becoming a volunteer counselor, visit, call SHIINE at 1-800-536-8197, or contact the Regional Coordinator nearest you:

Eastern South Dakota:
Tom Hoy
Phone: 605-333-3314

Central South Dakota:
Kathleen Nagle
Phone: 605-224-3212

Western South Dakota:
Debbie Stangle
Phone: 605-342-8635