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Volunteer Risk and Program Management (VRPM) Policies

Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP) and the State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP)

The Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP) program and State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) rely on volunteer Team Members to serve the Medicare beneficiaries within their states and territories. Without sound Team Member management policies, there are inherent risks to the SMPs and SHIPs in recruiting and using these Team Members. With that in mind, the Administration for Community Living (ACL) has developed a set of policies to assist the SMP and SHIP grantees with managing their programs. Though these policies were originally focused on volunteer Team Members only, these policies have evolved to establish and organize the structure and operation of both paid and volunteer programs within the SMP/SHIP. They describe the governing principles and values that shape and guide Team Member involvement, set expectations regarding the management of volunteer programs, delineate core expectations of SMP/SHIP Team Members, and broadly describe what Team Members may expect from the SMP/SHIP.

The purpose of these policies is to enhance the quality, effectiveness, and safety of SMP/SHIP services through the provision of guidance and direction to SMP/SHIP staff and volunteers. The VRPM policies are intended to support internal program management.

Questions on these policies can be sent to

Volunteer Risk and Program Management Policies (Updated September 2016)


Last modified on 07/20/2020

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