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Why You Should Be Selling Dental Insurance

Posted by www.psmbrokerage.com Admin on Wed, Mar 21, 2018 @ 12:51 PM

Why You Should Be Selling Dental Insurance.pngMedicare Still Doesn't Cover Dental Care. And That Can Be a Big Problem.

This is a good read on the lack of dental coverage provided by Medicare and the important role of a insurance agent to help keep beneficiaries covered. PSM offers an array of dental plans available to our agents along with the guidance on how to best incorporate into your business.

From the article...

Many people view Medicare as the gold standard of United States health coverage, and any attempt to cut it incurs the wrath of older Americans, a politically powerful group. But there are substantial coverage gaps in traditional Medicare. One of them is care for your teeth.

Almost one in five adults of Medicare eligibility age (65 years old and older) have untreated cavities. The same proportion have lost all their teeth. Half of Medicare beneficiaries have some periodontal disease, or infection of structures around teeth, including the gums. Bacteria from such infections can circulate elsewhere in the body, contributing to other health problems such as heart disease and strokes.

And yet traditional Medicare does not cover routine dental care, like checkups, cleanings, fillings, dentures and tooth extraction.

Paying for dental care out of pocket is hard for many Medicare beneficiaries. Half have annual incomes below $23,000 per year. Those who have the means, but are looking for a deal, might travel abroad for cheaper dental care. Tens of thousands of Americans go to Mexico every year for dental work at lower prices. Many others travel the globe for care.

Although low-income Medicare beneficiaries can also qualify for Medicaid, that’s of little help for those living in states with gaps in Medicaid dental coverage.

According to a study published in Health Affairs, in a given year, three-quarters of low-income Medicare beneficiaries do not receive any dental care at all. Among higher-income beneficiaries, the figure is about one-quarter.

Traditional Medicare will cover dental procedures that are integral to other covered services. So if your Medicare-covered hospital procedure involved dental structures in some way, important related dental care would be covered. But paying for any other care is up to the patient.

Lack of dental coverage by Medicare is among the top concerns of beneficiaries. The program also lacks coverage for hearing, vision or long-term care services. However, many Medicare Advantage plans — private alternatives to the traditional program — cover these services.

For example, 58 percent of Medicare Advantage enrollees have coverage for dental exams. In receiving these benefits through private plans, enrollees are also subject to plans’ efforts to limit use by, for example, requiring prior authorization or offering narrow networks of providers. These restrictions can be problematic for some beneficiaries, and about two-thirds of Medicare beneficiaries opt for the traditional program, not a private plan.

Adding a dental benefit to Medicare is popular. A Families USA survey of likely voters found that the vast majority (86 percent) of likely voters support doing so. The survey also found that when people do not see a dentist, the top reason is cost.

Ms. Willink’s study estimated that a Medicare dental benefit that covered three-quarters of the cost of care would increase Medicare premiums by $7 per month, or about 5 percent. The rest would need to be financed by taxes.

The cost of such a benefit might be offset — or partly offset — by reductions in other health care spending, reflecting the fact that poor oral health contributes to other health problems.

Making a case for this in the political arena would not be easy, though. The initial cost would be an inviting target for politicians who express concern about fiscal prudence, regardless of any potential long-term gain. But expanding Medicare has been done before.

In 2006, a prescription drug benefit was added to the program. The law for that program was enacted in 2003, and in that same year, the surgeon general released a report calling for dental care to be treated and covered like other health care. Whether by Medicaid or Medicare, that wish is still unfulfilled.

As you can see, more than ever it is important to carry a strong dental product in your portfolio. We would love to assist with any questions you have and make sure you offer this comprehensive coverage to your clients

Source: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/19/upshot/medicare-missing-dental-coverage.html

Additional Updates:
  • United World Med Supp released in Kentucky with great rates - View
  • Mutual of Omaha expands Med Supp Cash for Apps Program in new states - View
  • Mark Farrah Medicare Advantage Report - February 2018 - View
  • How to fight for mental focus - View
  • Phoenix releases new MYGA Annuity product - View
  • Increase Your Sales with Our Complimentary Tools - View
  • Express: Mutual of Omaha Weekly Updates - View
  • VALUES Quote of the Week - View
  • Current Agent Incentive Trips and Contests - View

Tags: dental hearing and vision insurance, Medicare Sales, Sales Strategies

Independent Agents Hold a Significant Advantage over Insurtech Startups

Posted by www.psmbrokerage.com Admin on Thu, Jan 04, 2018 @ 01:06 PM

Independent Agents Hold a Significant Advantage over Insurtech StartupsIndependent Agents Hold a Significant Advantage over Insurtech Startups

Insurance agents can provide something their insurtech rivals cannot: a human touch.

Independent insurance agents don’t need to fear that they’ll be replaced by insurtech startups powered by artificial intelligence. Recent studies reveal that insurance customers still want to talk to a live agent, especially when they need to file a claim or buy a complex product.

According to a recent survey conducted by insurance technology provider Vertafore, 60% of nearly American consumers worry that an AI-generated insurance purchasing process might automatically reject their coverage request, even when a human agent would likely give them a policy. Even tech-savvy Millennials shared this concern, with nearly 50% claiming that they’d prefer to buy an insurance contract from a live agent.

These findings are no surprise to Vertafore’s Chief Sales and Marketing Officer BJ Schaknowski. Speaking at recent conference, he stressed that since insurance is a complicated subject, people feel more confident speaking to someone who can guide them to the “right protection for their family and business.” The Vertafore survey is all the more evidence that independent agents can still compete with insurtech startups.

Build Relationships through Technology

As the Vertafore survey indicates, consumers overwhelmingly prefer human interaction when buying insurance, as 72% said they were turned off by the prospect of purchasing it with a chatbot. Insurance agents, however, cannot ignore recent technologies that are rapidly transforming the industry. Prospects and clients expect a user-friendly and robust web presence, complete with digital portals that enable them to search for information, submit payments, or handle basic inquiries.

Rather than resist these services, successful agents utilize the latest technologies like online lead generation systems, automated email and marketing campaigns, and AI-powered programs to engage with clients and prospects more regularly than ever. In other words, they use technology to cultivate a deeper relationship with their clients — not as a vehicle to offload all customer service functions to a digital system. When an agent responds to a client’s comment on Facebook or Twitter or through a text, he or she is doing so as a human — not a bot.

The challenge for independent agents in today’s tech-driven world is to set themselves apart from their insurtech rivals by providing a human touch — even when that human touch comes through technology. It’s what clients and prospects alike want and expect.

Source:

Additional Updates:
  • Medicare AEP signups were strong - View
  • Medicare Advantage: Growing and profitable - View
  • 35% of beneficiaries now in Medicare Advantage - View
  • Express: Mutual of Omaha weekly updates - View
  • VALUES quote of the week - View

Tags: technology, Medicare Sales, Sales Strategies, sales

Beyond the Low-Hanging Fruit

Posted by Lauren Hidalgo on Fri, Jun 07, 2013 @ 09:22 AM

Medicare Supplements When things are going well, picking the low-hanging fruit works and your business continues to run. The process is easier and it’s comfortable because you’ve gotten so good at the technique needed to turn those prospects to clients. Some producers continue with this method because they feel like the risk isn’t greater than the reward. Take courage to stretch yourself and your business!

Obviously you should continue to pick the low-hanging fruit, however at the same time you should “keep your ladder handy” for those higher opportunities. The important thing to remember is not to get lazy or into a rut. Remember that picking the low-hanging fruit is a complacent, low-energy, passive activity. When you reach higher, it’s more strategic and proactive. Plus, the low-hanging fruit will not always be available. In order to prevent decreases in your business, implement a diversity strategy so you can continue to bring in revenue from different sources.

For some this will be identifying a new niche market to get into. Choose one that isn’t being served or one that is maybe being served by a competitor you know your business is superior to. For others it will be assigning different members of their staff to the low-hanging fruit which leaves them time to pursue new markets or challenges in order to expand their business. If you’re only concentrating on the low-hanging fruit you aren’t paying attention to the bigger picture and your business could get blind sighted.

The Titanic is a good example. No one thought the ship would sink. However, it did. What sunk the Titanic wasn’t the ice they could see but the ice they could not see – the ice they neither anticipated nor planned for. Have your plan ready for the circumstances outside your control; you and your company depend on it.


Please give us your feedback!
What do you do if your business gets into a rut? What suggestions do you have for other agents who might be facing the same problem?

 

Source: LifeHealthPro

Additional Updates:
  • MI & SD Agents: Reach New Med Supp Sales Heights - Learn More
  • Cigna Med Supp High Stakes Cash Contest - Learn More

Tags: Success Tips, Senior Market Advice, Senior Market Success, Medicare Sales, Stonebridge Medicare Supplement, Cigna Medicare Supplement

How Healthcare Reform will Affect Med Supp Products

Posted by Lauren Hidalgo on Fri, May 31, 2013 @ 09:26 AM

Medicare Supplements The largest portion of healthcare reform Affordability and Accountability Act "ACA" is set to go into effect in 2014. For the most part the Medicare Supplement market will be largely unaffected by ACA with most of the impact resulting indirectly from changes to Medicare Advantage.

Possible impact to Medicare Supplements:

Medicare Supplement::

  • Section 3210 of ACA required the NAIC to add a nominal cost sharing to plans C and F (however, the NAIC has recommended no cost sharing to plans C and F due to lack of evidence this would decrease utilization. This has not been decided upon.)
  • Mostly unaffected by ACA, as long as Plan F doesn't change

Medicare Advantage:
  • Medicare Advantage plans will be held to a minimum loss ratio of 85%
  • Restructures the funding levels to Medicare Advantage plans in order to reduce the payments closer to traditional Medicare
    • CBO estimates this will cut approximately $145 billion over the next 10 years
    • The payment restructuring was designed to be implemented over 3-6 years, which began in 2011

The changes to ACA may even prove positive for the Medicare Supplement market. Medicare Supplements will not be affected by minimum loss ratio changes or any major plan changes, whereas the Medicare Advantage market will most likely have a higher minimum loss radio requirement and continued political pressure on funding.

If there are any Medicare Supplement carriers you’d like to add to your portfolio, give your marketer a call at 1-800-998-7715; they can assist you with more information on all of the carriers PSM offers.


Please give us your feedback!
Do you think the ACA will affect your Medicare Supplement sales? Your Medicare Advantage sales?

 

Source: CSG Actuarial

Tags: senior market news, Medicare Supplement, Medicare News, Medicare Advantage News, Medicare Sales

Hot Med Supp Rates with Awesome Incentive Program

Posted by Lauren Hidalgo on Thu, Apr 11, 2013 @ 10:30 AM


For the month of April, Cigna Medicare Supplement has put a Visa Gift Card contest in place for their active writing agents. The ground rules are to sell as many ARLIC Medicare Supplement policies as possible during the entire month of April and win a Visa Gift Card for applications issued within the month. Gift cards will be given in the following increments:

Base Hit (7 Apps) = $200
Triple (10 Apps) = $300
Home Run (20 Apps) = $500


Go Here for the Official Rules.

Once appointed, you will find all your equipment on AgentView. From applications to brochures and even EXPRESS APP, AgentView is your coach to a GRAND SLAM.

Along with competitive rates, Cigna has several benefits for their agents to take advantage of including High Commissions, a Paperless Application Process, Clean Case Issue in 2-4 days, and Daily Advances. Now with the addition of the Visa Gift Card contest, it’s an even better time to get contracted and start selling Cigna to your senior clients.

Cigna Medicare Supplement is currently available for sale in AL, IA, IL, KY, LA, MS, MT, NE, NC, NM, NV, OK, RI, SC, SD, TX, and WV. New states are becoming available continuously and rates have been filed in AK, AZ, AR, CA, CO, CT, FL, GA, IN, HI, KS, MA, MD, ME, MO, ND, NH, NJ, OH, PA, TN, UT, VA, VT, WA, and WY. With this kind of national availability, Cigna is an ideal Med Supp to use to sell Medicare Supplements by phone.


Request Information

Additional Updates:
  • Remembrance Life: A New Alternative To Traditional Final Expense - Learn More
  • Hospital Indemnity Plan Designed Specifically for Medicare Advantage Members - Learn More

Tags: Sales Tips, Senior Market Success, Medicare Supplement, Medicare Sales, Cigna Medicare Supplement

Low Rates to the Rescue: NEW! Cigna Medicare Supplement

Posted by Lauren Hidalgo on Fri, Jan 18, 2013 @ 10:57 AM

Cigna, one of the biggest names in the insurance industry, is releasing a new Medicare Supplement in the following states: AL, CO, IA, OK, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MS, MT, NE, NV, NM, NC, ND, OH, PA, SC, TN, TX, UT, VA, WV, WY. The Medicare Supplement is insured by the American Retirement Life Insurance Company and features competitive rates nationwide.

Become appointed with Cigna Supplemental Benefits and take advantage of:

  • Competitive Rates Nationwide
  • High Commissions
  • Online Contracting
  • Paperless Application Process - No Wet Signature Required
  • Clean Cases Issue in 2-4 days
  • Daily Advances Available

Contact us today at 1-800-998-7715 or click the link below to complete your contracting and start selling!


Request Information

Additional Updates:
  • New Medicare Supplement from Cigna - Learn More
  • Gerber Medicare Supplement Rate Adjustment for New Mexico - Learn More
  • Gerber Medicare Supplement Rate Adjustment for Nebraska - Learn More

Tags: Cigna, senior market news, Medicare Supplement, Medicare Sales, Cigna Medicare Supplement

Retail Pharmacy Program: Reach your AEP Sales Goals

Posted by Lauren Hidalgo on Fri, Aug 10, 2012 @ 09:23 AM

Medicare SupplementsAs the summer starts to wind down, kids come home from camp and the Olympics close, it’s once again important to start thinking about your plans for the Annual Election Period starting October 15th. Soon, kids will be back in school, and you’ll be tailgating at your favorite football team’s games. Your fall schedule will be in effect, so start to plan now and ease the transition into the busiest time for your Medicare sales. This year Precision Senior Marketing has partnered with independent drug stores and select large national pharmacy chain locations to offer our agents a Retail Pharmacy Program second to none. This is an exciting opportunity to help you reach and exceed your business plan for the season.

The Pharmacy program is part of PSM’s ongoing effort to aid in your business success with innovative selling opportunities. This program gives you the chance to prospect, sell and gain referrals on insurance products with the consumers in your area. There are no strict time commitments, and you will not be sharing a location with another agent. You will be able to plan your schedule and determine what works best for you and your customers. Working with the pharmacist you will be able to pin-point the times that have more traffic and address any concerns with consumers on their Part D policy as well as their Medicare Supplement or Medicare Advantage plans.

Some of the highlights include:

  • Exclusive Pharmacy Opportunity
  • Sell one of the Hottest Part D Plans offered for 2013
  • Remain independent offering all your approved products
  • Unlimited Lead Opportunities daily
  • Pharmacy and Pharmacist working with you, for you
Get Started with Retail Pharmacy Program

Request Information online or give us a call at 1-800-998-7715 to be assured you get your choice of pharmacy. Locations are limited and filling up fast! We hope that you take this opportunity and look forward to continuing to offer you ways to grow and strengthen your business in the future.

DM081312


Additional Updates:
  • Take the pain out of prospecting - Learn More
  • Combined Insurance Medicare Supplement Now Available in KY & SD - Learn More
  • Assured Life/Woodmen Med Supp Rate Increase for AZ, MS, MT, and WV - Learn More

Tags: Sales Tips, Senior Market Success, Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement, Referrals, Medicare Sales, Customer Service, Building Client Relationships, Annual Election Period

Unconventional Marketing Techniques that Work

Posted by Lauren Hidalgo on Fri, Jun 01, 2012 @ 09:40 AM

Medicare SupplementsAgencies grow using a variety of marketing, some more common than others. If you've reached a brick wall and your pipeline isn't as full as you'd like it to be, now is the time to look into jump starting your marketing techniques from a new angle. Although some marketing may seem unorthodox, as Maribeth Kuzmeski from Red Zone Marketing advises, "It's how you get your message out and how you drive others to you. There's not an advisor I know who has too many people to see."

The blog last week looked at using social media to connect with prospects. Here are a few other overlooked tactics that could give your business the jolt you have been looking for:

  1. Virtual Appointments. In our internet age, face-to-face meetings no longer have to mean in person. Several web-based video meeting services, like GotoMeeting and Skype, are available for you to meet with your clients without leaving your business. When prospecting over the phone, prospects might feel more at ease working with you if they are able to put a face to a name. Especially with seniors just turning 65 and familiar with internet tools, you will be able to walk through the paperwork to get them contracted more efficiently without sacrificing the personal touch of meeting face to face.

  2. Community involvement. Not only is getting involved in charitable organizations good in and of itself, it's also a great way to network with prospects and build relationships. Whether it is through your religious place of worship or another volunteer opportunity in your community, get to know the people you work with and fill them in on what you do. Chances are, someone there or someone they know could be an excellent referral for your future business.

  3. Webinars. It's becoming increasingly difficult for prospects to commit to a seminar or event, however with a webinar you can potentially meet with more people while cutting the costs associated with planning an event. Using the same platforms as your virtual appointments, you will be able to educate a group of prospects leading to new clients.

  4. Client surveys. Doing a yearly survey of your current clients is a great way to find out who is willing to give a referral as well as what products or services your current clients are also interested it. This too, will identify who might be interested in adding a final expense, short term care or annuity to their portfolio, as well as show what products may be missing from your portfolio that are of interest to your clients.

  5. Direct mail. Surprise! As more and more agents have favored e-mail marketing some seniors have become "turned off" by the volume they are now receiving. This has made them more receptive to direct mail pieces again, and the response rates have increased in the last year.

Whether it's meeting with clients virtually or getting involved in your community, the success of your agency depends on how well you execute your marketing ideas. As John Comer, CFP or Comer Consulting acknowledges, "Marketing is easy to understand but hard to execute." If you have any questions about executing an unconventional marketing strategy, call your PSM marketer at 1-800-998-7715 for tips and techniques to get it off the ground successfully.



Please give us your feedback!
What unconventional marketing strategies have you tried? What do you find the most difficult aspect of your agency's marketing? Is there any topics you'd like to see discussed on the blog as far as techniques to guide you through your marketing efforts?

Source: InsuranceNewsNet

Tags: Sales Tips, Web Tips, technology, Referrals, Leads, Medicare Sales, Customer Service, Professional Networking

Med Supp Policy Growth Continues

Posted by Lauren Hidalgo on Fri, May 04, 2012 @ 09:45 AM

Medicare SupplementsMedicare Supplement figures from MFA’s Medicare Supplement Market Data, Health Coverage Portal show a continued growth in the number of new policies being issued. New policies issued in the last three years increased by 7.5% in 2011 when compared to the previous year’s data; resulting in 9.9 million seniors being covered by Medicare Supplements as of December 31, 2011.

Med Supp carriers increased from 124 in 2010 to 129 in 2011, with one carrier no longer reporting new policies and another six reporting new policies. The plans earned a combined $21.359 billion in premiums and had $17.028 billion in claims. This was an increase of 4.1% and 5.4% between 2010 and 2011 respectively. The aggregate loss ratio, or incurred claims as a percent of earned premiums, returned to 80% in 2011 after decreasing slightly to 79% in 2010.

Plan F was chosen by 47% of consumers with Medicare Supplement coverage in 2011, increasing from 43% in 2010. Plan N gained 265,854 enrollees since it was introduced in June 2010.

UnitedHealth Group, including AARP, dominated the market share with 31% of the business. Mutual of Omaha ranked second with 11%. The Top seven companies have not changed in the last three years. Also, the study showed most companies are diversifying their Medicare offerings to include Med Supp, Med Advantage, and Plan D in order to have more opportunities as the senior market grows.

The senior market is constantly growing, especially now that the Boomer generation is entering the market. The Med Supp landscape continues to grow and change and exciting new products continue to enter this dynamic market.


Lookin for Medicare Supplement coverage?  Get a Medigap quote.

Please give us your feedback!
Did you see an increase in your business between 2010 and 2011? Which product do you find you sell the most of?

Source: Mark Farrah Associates

Additional Updates:
  • Plan "G" - Increasing Sales for many PSM Agents - Learn More
  • Gerber Life WI Guide to Health Insurance for People with Medicare - Learn More

Tags: Medicare Supplement, insurance news, Medicare Sales, Gerber Life Medicare Supplement, Baby Boomers

Medicare Select - Are sales opportunities passing you by?

Posted by Lauren Hidalgo on Fri, Mar 23, 2012 @ 10:18 AM

Medicare SupplementsMedicare Select is one of the best kept secrets of today’s top producing agents. Medicare Select offers all of the great benefits of a traditional Medicare Supplement but costs approximately 15% - 20% less. Your clients are able to visit their doctor of choice, without the need for approval or pre-certification. If hospital care is needed, your clients may visit any of the hospitals that are affiliated with their Medicare Select Insurance policy, anywhere in the country*.

Medicare Select is an ideal option for seniors living on a budget, as the yearly savings could go a long way toward cost of living expenses. For example, a 75 year old woman in Florida would spend $2,152.35 on her Medicare Select plan instead of $2,457.22 with a Plan F Medicare Supplement, a $304.87 a year savings. Many of your clients already use a hospital affiliated with the Medicare Select network, this is the perfect opportunity to help reduce their healthcare premiums!

For more information on participating hospitals and Medicare Select sales opportunities, please go here Medicare Select Information Request or call a marketing representative at 1-800-998-7715.

* This insurance plan utilizes a network of participating hospitals. In the absence of emergency confinement, you must use one of the network hospitals.


Please give us your feedback!
Do you sell Medicare SELECT? How do you incorporate it into your sales presentation? Are you clients receptive to the SELECT product?

Additional Updates:
  • Final Notice to Contracted UnitedHealthcare Agents - Learn More
  • Important Notice to Contracted Mutual of Omaha Agents - Learn More

Tags: United Healthcare Medicare Supplement, Medicare Sales, Creating Value, Mutual of Omaha Medicare Supplement, Medicare Select

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