Government

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The Department provides most direct services through its Division of Statewide Community-Based Services, which works through the state’s eleven Area Agencies on Aging and local service providers to deliver essential services to a vital segment of the population. The Department also directly administers a wide range of programs, ranging from the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program, Office of Public and Professional Guardians, and Communities for a Lifetime to SHINE (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders) and CARES (Comprehensive Assessment and Review for Long-Term Care Services).

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(850) 414-2000
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Comprehensive listing of links for the State of Florida departments and agencies.

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SHINE (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders) is a free program offered by the Florida Department of Elder Affairs and your local Area Agency on Aging. Specially trained volunteers can assist you with your Medicare, Medicaid, and health insurance questions by providing one-on-one counseling and information. SHINE services are free, unbiased, and confidential.

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(800) 963-5337
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The Osceola County SSA office offers information, help and services for individuals applying for retirement benefits, disability benefits, Medicare, or a Social Security card.

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Medicaid is the medical assistance program that provides access to health care for low-income families and individuals.  Medicaid also assists the elderly and people with disabilities with the costs of nursing facility care and other medical and long-term care expenses.

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Part of the Florida Department of Education, the Office of Early Learning dedicates its people, time and energy to ensuring access, affordability, and quality of early learning services for the state’s children and families.  There is a wide variety of early childhood education programs and services for children from birth to 5 in Florida.  They range from programs that help families afford childcare, to free opportunities for Florida 4-year-olds to attend prekindergarten to information and referral services.

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Healthy Start services are available to pregnant women, infants, and children up to age three. Services target identified risks and include information, referral and ongoing care coordination and support to assure access to needed services; psychosocial, nutritional and smoking cessation counseling; childbirth, breastfeeding and parenting support and education; and home visiting.

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