Cook County Pension Fund Hosts New Medicare Education Program


The Cook County Pension Fund (CCPF) has officially kicked off its Medicare Education initiative with its first "Happy 65th Birthday Medicare Education Event," held February 28, 2018, at 70 West Madison in Chicago. More than 70 CCPF members, including retirees and their spouses as well as active members attended the new program.

For the event, representatives from the Social Security Administration (SSA), UnitedHealthcare (UHC), CVS, and CCPF’s health benefits department gave presentations related to Medicare eligibility, enrollment, and coordination.

During an overview of benefits administered by SSA, a representative of the agency discussed Medicare. The speaker explained eligibility, how SSA handles Medicare enrollment and when to enroll in Medicare Parts A and B, and how Medicare enrollment can be done online through

Following that presentation, a representative from UHC, the health plan provider for CCPF’s retiree health benefit, discussed the difference between the two health plans offered to retirees: Choice and Choice Plus. The speaker also explained how UHC’s PPO plans coordinate with Medicare, reviewed how medical bills are paid once a retiree is enrolled in Medicare, and encouraged retiree health plan participants to sign up for, a web portal where they can find doctors and hospitals, and review health statements, estimates of benefits and other information.

Addressing prescription drug questions was a CVS representative who spoke about SilverScript, a subsidiary of CVS and the pharmacy plan retiree health benefits participants are automatically enrolled in. The representative discussed the plans’ two parts: SilverScript – the Medicare Part D plan – and a “Wrap” plan, which is extra prescription drug coverage that fills in gaps Medicare Part D doesn’t cover.  Also discussed were copays, prior authorizations, and which pharmacies fill prescriptions at the lowest copay.

CCPF Senior Manager of Health Benefits Jane Hawes closed out the event. During her presentation, Hawes covered the steps retiree health plan participants must take to change to the Medicare supplemental plan. She also provided an overview of preventive resources and services available to health plan participants – both Medicare and non-Medicare – at no charge through UHC.

The Medicare Education Event, geared toward CCPF retiree members at or approaching age 65, was provided at no cost to members. It is the first of what will be a regular event CCPF hosts to further assist members with their questions about Medicare.

Visit Retiree Health Benefits to learn more.


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