Once again the open enrollment season for the Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Programs is upon us. Again, as in the past, the Southern Maine Agency on Aging, SMAA, is offering no cost, unbiased assistance to seniors in our local communities.

Because of the many changes among the nearly 50 Medicare Part D plans, it is critical that seniors review their 2008 coverage to insure that it will be cost effective for 2009. This is not a year to be complacent because many drug prices have increased, co-payments and deductibles for your 2008 plan may have changed for 2009, and seven plans are no longer offering coverage in Maine for 2009. SMAA recommends that all plans be checked each year to assure continued enrollment in a plan which best meets your needs.

The open enrollment period begins Nov. 15 and ends Dec. 31. Appointments throughout the enrollment period are being scheduled at the Gray Library on Wednesdays 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and at the Windham Library Tuesdays from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. To arrange an appointment call either SMAA at 1-800-427-7411 x524 or Philip Ohman, SMAA volunteer, at 657-5446.