Help applying for federal, state benefits

The National Council on Aging is expanding its national network of benefits enrollment centers to help eligible older Americans and individuals with disabilities apply for benefits programs to pay for daily expenses.

NCOA will provide over $11 million in funding to 90 centers across 39 states—including two in the Puget Sound area–to offer in-person assistance to low-income individuals who are eligible for federal and state programs for healthcare, prescriptions, food, and utilities.

The benefits enrollment centers are funded through the Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act administered by the U.S. Administration for Community Living. The funding has been extended 11 times with bipartisan support in Congress, helping connect 9.3 million lower-income adults to benefits in 2022-23 alone.

Locations in Washington where enrollment is offered are the Chinese Information and Service Center (206-624-5633, and the National Asian Pacific Center on Aging (206-624-1023,, both in Seattle.

The centers prioritize outreach to individuals who are historically under-enrolled in benefits or face unique challenges accessing services:

• Black, Latino, Indigenous and Native American, Asian American and Pacific Islander, and other people of color.

• Members of religious minorities.

• Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) individuals.

• People with disabilities. • Residents of rural areas.