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Medicare Blog | Medicare News | Medicare Information

Experts Weigh-In on Medicare Advantage

Posted by Lauren Hidalgo on Fri, Aug 05, 2011 @ 09:59 AM

Medicare SupplementsIn the August issue of Agents Sales Journal market experts Jay Cox, Howard Peck, Richard Peitzmeier, and Tony Colistra were called upon to give their take on the Medicare Advantage market. They spoke of the tremendous opportunities in the Medicare Advantage market and urged those agents who might have moved away from the market due to changes to come learn the benefits. Noting the new rating system will improve the quality of care for Med Advantage members they are optimistic about plans that are proactively working to better the care that members receive. They also see the market going toward a more quality focused approach. Though the details of the cuts Congress is proposing to Medicare Advantage haven't been released the agents speculated that they would include either a decrease in the payment to doctors, increased premiums to policyholders, or reduced benefits. This would then be beneficial to the Medicare Supplement market, for those seniors looking for more coverage who may not have even known Medigap existed due to geography or lifestyle.

Cox stated that Med Advantage is a year-by-year benefit, and that adapting to the changes is part of selling the product. He explains the importance of the yearly education; it is essential for agents to stay abreast of the changes and keep their clients informed. He advises agents working in the business to have a mid-year check-in with their clients in order to assure they are taking full advantage of their benefits, explaining that this justifies the agent's role to skeptical clients. It also builds trust, adds value to your service, and allows another chance to seek out referrals from satisfied clients. His no-holds-barred advice is "don't evaluate it; just sell it. When it changes, we'll change. If it stops, we'll stop, and we'll worry about what to do next then."

Colistra states that "The future for Medicare Advantage is a bright one… Med Advantage plans have proven themselves to be innovative, offering valuable services to member. All of these points combined point to an industry that will continue to thrive." With the Medicare population expected to double in the next thirty-five years, Cox advises those agents still on the fence about going into the Medicare market to "Try it, you'll like it!"

When prospecting with clients it's important to keep a diverse portfolio, including both Medicare Supplements and Medicare Advantage, in order to meet each client's individual needs with a plan that offers both the coverage and price-point they are looking for.

Please give us your feedback!
Have you chosen to roll with the changes in the Medicare Advantage market? How has it benefited your business? Do you have any advice for those just starting out in the market?

Source: Agent Sales Journal

Additional Updates:
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  • Mutual of Omaha Med Supp New e-App Quick Start Guide - Learn More
  • Sentinel Personal Choice Annuity: Delivering the Best Rates for your Clients - Learn More

Tags: United Healthcare Medicare Supplement, Annual Enrollment Period, Senior Market Success, Medicare Advantage, Sentinel Life Medicare Supplement, Mutual of Omaha Medicare Supplement

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