Dual Eligibles – Who are they?

What are Dual Eligibles, and why is everyone talking about them?

Simply put, dual eligibles are individuals who are eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid. These individuals are typically part of an under-served market and are eligible for a year-round SEP based upon their low income status.

Finding Dual Eligibles

As most of you know, Medicare is a federal program with deductibles and cost sharing associated with Parts A, B, and D. Medicaid is a federally funded but state run program. Because the funds come from the federal government, the feds get to tell the states what they MUST cover. The states determine on their own if they WANT to cover additional benefits. An individual who has both Medicare and Medicaid is entitled to have all of their cost sharing for Parts A and B paid for by Medicaid. For beneficiaries of a Part D Benefit, Medicare will automatically enroll them into a Part D plan that has a premium below the regional benchmark.

If a beneficiary has Medicare and has all of their cost sharing paid for by Medicaid, why would a Medicare Advantage plan be a good fit? It is really simple…Dual Eligibles receive EXTRA BENEFITS!!! A D-SNP (Dual Special Needs Plan) typically covers additional benefits such as dental, routine eye exams and eyeglasses. Some D-SNPs include transportation, hearing aids and over-the-counter benefits as well! The downfall to an MA plan is most D-SNP’s are HMO’s with specific doctor networks. The good news is that Medicaid beneficiaries are already accustomed to using Medicaid networks and getting referrals, so the fact that most D-SNP’s are HMO plans is not a detrimental factor in most cases.

Dual Eligibles are Members of Medicare Savings Plans or MSP’s

All states have Medicare Saving Programs (MSP’s) as well. Medicare Savings Plans pay for Part B premiums if you make below a certain income limit. For instance, SLMB’s can make up to 120% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) and are guaranteed to get their Part B premium paid for by the state. QI-1’s can make up to 135% of the FPL, but the funds to pay the Part B premiums are first come first served and are NOT guaranteed by the state to be available to pay the Part B premiums. Each state Medicaid sets their own rules and regulations for benefits in that state depending upon income and other factors.

Every year I meet two or three people who do not know about these Medicare Savings Plans, or that they may be eligible to receive Low Income Subsidy (LIS) benefits to reduce their prescription drug costs. Once I sit down with these folks at the kitchen table and help them see real savings, I know I’ve made a meaningful impact in their life!  By spending just a few minutes on this, I can add a lifetime client to my book of business who is more than happy to send friends and family my way.

You can save your client up to $300 a month or more by helping them apply for LIS and other Medicare Savings programs. Most programs do not require them to be full Dual Eligibles. Individuals who make between 100-135% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) can apply to have their Medicare Part D premium covered and their prescription cost sharing significantly reduced as well as their Medicare Part B premium covered. Click here for a link to your state’s programs.

Join us on March 14th for the “Finding Dual Eligibles” webinar to learn more!

RB Insurance Group is here to make it happen for you!

Upcoming Training Events:

2017 Sales Champion Summit Wrap-up

RBI’s Senior Sales Coordinator: James Gramp

About the Author: With his signature common sense, quiet good humor, and brilliant customer service, Jim is an integral part of the RBI team — we’d go so far as to say we’d be lost without him! An Arizona native, Jim manages agent relationships for the East Coast and specializes in the RBI agent tools, especially the Agent Market Edge. Jim has been a licensed health insurance agent for 2 years, and has worked at RBI for almost 3 years. An accomplished bassoonist, he is known around the office for his amazing musical skills. In addition to keeping busy around the office, Jim frequently contributes to our blog, bringing a new agent’s perspective to the RBI online presence.

2017 Sales Champion Summit Wrap-up

You missed it!  Do you know what we did with the brokers that missed last year’s Sales Champion Summit?  We made them take the AHIP… a second time… Okay, that may or may not be a lie.  All kidding aside, LOTS of people are busy on a Tuesday morning, so hopefully this wrap up does our Sales Champion Summit justice because I know I had a great time!  Without further ado, I give you a brief summary of the once in a lifetime a year event that you missed.

The Value of TRUST – Presenter: Charlie Ferrell

Have you ever wished you had a personal sales coach to help you with setting business goals, making sales action plans, and being more effective in home visits.  Charlie Ferrell introduced RBI’s new TRUST Training, a program designed around 15+ years of senior insurance experience.  So what does TRUST stand for?

T – THINK: Put yourself in the client’s shoesSales Champion Summit

R – RESPECT:  Build rapport

U – UNCOVER:  Needs analysis

– SOLVE:  Overcome objections

– TAKE ACTION:  Ask for the sale

The bottom line is, if people don’t trust you, they will never buy from you.

Marketing to Fill Your Appointment Book – Presenter: Justin Bever

A lot of independent Medicare brokers in the industry today see the need for marketing, but don’t know how to take that need and translate it into action.  Marketing for your business should be about building a system that fits your budget, your schedule, and is easy to maintain.  After all, the goal is to scale your marketing to fit YOUR business growth.

Usually when I say marketing, agents tend to think of $$$.  But what they may not realize is the most effective marketing/advertising is word of mouth.

7 Habits of Sales Champions – Presenter: Charlie Ferrell

If you’re like me, building strong habits that work for you is a struggle. Charlie Ferrell, broke down how to be a real sales champion by building habits like a ladder to success! My number-one takeaway from this event was S.M.A.R.T. goal setting, always focused on learning, and are passionate about their work.  (Don’t know what SMART goal setting is?  We’re just a phone call away!)

Here’s a taste of this presentation:

The most successful agents I know are masters of #7 on our list, follow-up.  Whether it’s simply following up with clients, referral sources, or returning phone calls, following-up is always my top priority when it comes to just about everything…except for maybe returning that phone call from your mother-in-law.

DSNP’s: Who They Are & Why Work Them – Presenter: Rob Bever

This presentation captured the many reasons that Dual Eligibles are a great market for any agent. A quick recap:

Most agents I talk to don’t like working with Dual Eligible beneficiaries and want nothing to do with them.  The most common reason I hear is that they fall off the books too easily.  This got me thinking, “How was RBI’s Sales Manager, Charlie Ferrell, able to build his business on Dual Eligible’s while I’m talking to agents who can’t even get them to stay on the plan for 1 year?” The answer is usually a combination of a couple things like, not following-up, and not returning phone calls.

If you ask me, working with Dual Eligible beneficiaries is more fulfilling than selling regular MAPD’s or Medicare Supplement policies, because these are people that truly need help and in a lot of cases have no one else to turn to.

Grassroots Campaign: Business Growth Through Educational Events – Presenter: Charlie Ferrell

This presentation was all about the radical idea that a truly GREAT Educational Events will pay dividends with referrals and building a reputation in your community.

Here’s the exceprt:

Imagine you hosting a great educational event every 3 months at the same location.  If you’re doing it right by, making them fun and interactive, being engaging, and of course presenting good information then the people who attend are that much more likely to tell their friends and family about a great free event (your event if you’re still following me) and even more likely to reach out to you when they have questions about their Medicare or want to switch plans.

Intentional Scheduling: How Efficiency Increases Sales – Presenter: Justin Bever

How do you ensure that you’ll have a great open enrollment?  It’s all in the preparation. 

In this presentation, we talked about managing back-end office processes like, turning in all your applications at the end of the day while making sure everything gets documented and saved along the way.  You’ll be amazed at just how much time you can save by working smarter, not harder, to stay organized and on top your crazy workload during the Annual Enrollment Period.

My bottom-line takeaway? Hire a temporary assistant (or get a family member to help for cheap labor!) to help stay organized during AEP. Even if they just call and set appointments with your clients and potential clients, you’ll be able to see more clients in a day.

How to Succeed in a Commission-only Business – Presenter: Justin Bever

The focus of this presentation was an answer to the question: how do Medicare brokers survive until late January and sometimes early February before they even see a dime from their Medicare Advantage enrollments from last year’s AEP?

Short Answer:  Burn through your savings account.

Long Answer:  Very carefully!  All kidding aside, if you don’t have a good amount of cash that you can live on for 3+ months, what do you do for the Annual Enrollment Period?  There’s a couple options:

  1. Look for an agency that will advance your commissions (usually career agent programs will offer this — call RBI to learn about this option, ask for Charlie!)
  2. Cross-sell ancillary products like Hospital Indemnity, First Diagnosis Cancer, and Short Term care that typically pay in 7 – 10 days, MUCH quicker than MA plans.

Turning Your Business Into an LLC – Presenter: Charlie Ferrell

The two major reasons ANY agent should run their business as an LLC are tax advantages and to protect you and your assets with an extra layer of liability protection. Another reason is the ability to provide for your family should something happen to you. For example, if you were to pass away suddenly and you are contracted directly with a carrier as an individual, those commissions would cease to be paid upon your death. If you were contracted as an LLC and you were to pass away, your commissions would continue to be paid as long as your entity remains in compliance with the carrier contract.

We’ve actually partnered with the ASU Alumni Law Group to get you a discounted rate when forming your own business entity.  If you  would like their contact information, please give us a call (1-800-997-3107) and we’d be happy to help. Don’t forget to tell them that RB Insurance Group referred you.

Thank You!

A special thanks to those of you that were able to attend our 2nd annual Sales Champion Summit!  We truly appreciate you taking the time out of your busy lives to attend.  Hopefully you had a lot of good takeaways from the event that will help take your Medicare business to the next level.  We hope you will be able to join us for next year’s Sales Champion Summit!  Check out some pictures below from this years event.

Sales Champion Summit

Sales Champion SummitSales Champion Summit

It’s our goal as an FMO to “Make it Happen for You”.  Read more from RBI Director of Marketing, Justin Bever, about how and why your FMO should work for you.  Interested in partnering with RB Insurance Group?  Give us a call today to get started! 1-800-997-3107

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Agent Market Edge

Video: RBI Carrier Hall of Fame Week 2

Video: RBI Carrier Hall of Fame Week 2 (ICYMI)

So if you’ve been following along this week on all our emails and event calendar, you know that April is “Carrier Spring Training” month! We are so excited for this new initiative, and just finished up our second week of webinars! But if you missed these webinars and don’t have time to re-watch them, here’s the RBI sales team to break down the highlights of each carrier, and what they do for your portfolio. Watch the video below: RBI Carrier Hall of Fame Week 2!

This week, we collaborated with Aetna, Humana, and United Healthcare. A huge shout-out to our presenters, Daniel Santos (Aetna), Kirk Sanich (Humana), and our own Charlie Ferrell stepping in for Ken Colvard (United Healthcare), who did a fantastic job showcasing their products and what makes them compelling for members.

RBI Carrier Training Highlights:

  • Aetna by Rebecca Howard
  • Humana by James Gramp
  • United Healthcare by Charlie Ferrell
Video: RBI Carrier Hall of Fame Week 2

Look for this symbol on all our new “Carrier Hall of Fame” videos!

The RBI bottom line is that all three of these carriers offer something different and that they work together nicely to fill out your portfolio as a senior insurance advisor. We recommend that you contract with all three today because everyone is different and it’s important to have the products that fit the needs of your clients.

Watch the recording: Aetna Webinar. Watch the recording: Humana Webinar. Watch the recording: United Healthcare Webinar.

Click here to get contracted. Click here to see all our contracted carriers.

Sign up for next week’s webinars today!

  • Monday, April 17 at 9 AM MST/12 PM EDT“Hit a Homer with Mutual of Omaha” Register.
  • Tuesday, April 18 at 9 AM MST/12 PM EDT“Steal Second with GTL” Register.
  • Wednesday, April 19 at 9 AM MST/12 PM EDT“Bat 1.000 with RBI’s Quoting Tool” Register.
  • Thursday, April 20 at 9 AM MST/12 PM EDT“Out of the Ballpark with SilverScript” Register.

Subscribe to the the RBI Agent’s Advantage Blog today

Did you miss last week’s webinars? Watch the full recording: American Continental Webinar. Watch the full recording: Equitable webinar. Watch the full recording: Medico webinar.

All videos are for agent use only.

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Your Voice Matters

Video: Direct Mail Madness Roll-up

Don’t you just hate missing amazing content? Now you don’t have to: watch Direct Mail Madness Roll-up now!

Have you thought about using Direct Mail to market your senior insurance business? Maybe you thought it was a lot of money for leads. Maybe you thought that it was too complicated for you. Perhaps you thought that tracking your investment would be impossible.  If any of these scenarios have you nodding along, you need to watch our 60 Second Roll-up “Direct Mail Madness Roll-up.” 

What are the things agents hate most about marketing?

  • Spending lots of money and not getting anything in return, or in other words, bad Return on Investment (ROI)
  • It’s tough to get the message to the right people, or targeting the message
  • Getting leads that are not effective

RB Insurance is here to help!  We de-mystify Direct Mail, and can help you determine ROI, targeting the right leads, and ultimately get leads that you can convert into a client for life.

Direct Mail Madness Roll-up

Look for this symbol on all our new “60 Second Roll-up” videos!

Now that you’ve got a taste for Direct Mail, you should watch the full recording! Then you should check out your Agent Market Edge account and get started today!

Don’t forget to sign up for next week’s webinar, which talks about how to use Direct Mail to grow your Medicare business. Check out our Carrier Spring Training series starting in April and get started contracting for the selling season! Call 1-800-997-3107 to get more details! 

Your Voice Matters
Medicare Supplements 101 Roll-Up
Agent Market Edge
Hospital Indemnity Roll-up

Medicare Supplements 201 Revisited for 2017

If you read our Medicare Supplements 101 Revisited article last week, you know that we are all about understanding supplements. This week it’s time to go deeper: Medicare Supplements 201 covers more about the unusual or specialized plans you might need. This article has also been revisited for 2017, so you’re getting the latest of fresh updates.

Part 1 of our series went over what the different Medicare Supplements cover and how they work with Original Medicare.

Medicare Supplements 201 coverage A-N chart

In Part 2 of our series we are going to discuss the different enrollment periods for Medicare supplements as well as some of the underwriting criteria major carriers use in pricing their plans. Remember, in order to enroll into a Medicare Supplement policy, beneficiaries must have Medicare Parts A and B.

Open enrollment for Medicare Supplements is the 6 months following a beneficiaries Part B effective date. No health questions asked. Full commission paid according to contracted rates.

Guaranteed issue. According to federal guidelines, carriers must issue a Medigap Plan A, B, C, F, K, or L that’s sold by any insurance company in the state under the following conditions;

  • During a Medicare Advantage members 12 month trial period
  • A beneficiaries’ current Medicare Advantage plan is leaving the area either due to financial reasons or is no longer going to offer that plan.
  • Beneficiaries’ employer group plan that pays after Medicare is ending. This includes retiree and COBRA coverage
  • Beneficiaries leave a Medigap or Medicare Advantage plan because the company hasn’t followed the rules

Underwritten policies can be issued at any time after the open enrollment period and beneficiaries are able to pass underwriting questions. Some policies have relaxed underwriting for a higher premium. Full commissions paid according to contracted rates.

Underwriting guidelines vary from carrier to carrier. Some carriers allow diabetics with no issues and other carriers will not issue policies at all for diabetics. Almost all Medicare Supplement carriers have a “prohibited prescriptions” list that tells you the application will be declined if a member takes the medication on the list for a specific condition. Some carriers include this list in every kit they send out.

Medicare Supplements for Beneficiaries under age 65. Not all states require Medigap plans to cover beneficiaries under age 65. In some cases states may only require carriers to offer certain plans for those under age 65 or cover certain conditions such as ESRD. In all cases, under 65 policies are more expensive than a regular Medigap policy since carriers know the beneficiaries will be using more benefits than those over 65 on original Medicare.

This is just brief overview of Medicare Supplements. For an in depth explanation and more, click the button below for the recording of Part 2 of our webinar series on Medicare Supplements: “Medicare Supplements 201.”

Contact us today to get contracted with the highest rated carriers in your area. Many plans are only competitive in certain zip codes so don’t be fooled by all their hype. Call us at 1-800-997-3107 and let us help you with all of your Medicare Supplement contracting needs.

Updated 3/13/2017; Originally Published 5/16/2016

ICYMI Duals for Newbies Wrap-up

Charlie Ferrell

National Sales Manager

Charlie started his senior insurance career after a brief 30-year stint in the restaurant industry. In the 12 years since then, he has been blazing trails and setting standards for excellence all over! A native son of Utah, he has been a state manager for RBI as well as a managing general agent for UHC, Coventry, Molina and other carriers! Charlie came to RBI as the National Sales Manager in 2015, and is an invaluable resource for our agents and staff for marketing, compliance, and sales topics! If all of that wasn’t enough, Charlie specializes in the Dual-Eligible market and is leading the charge behind RBI’s new “Dual Eligibles for Newbies” seminars!”

ICYMI Duals for Newbies Wrap-up

National Sales Manager, Charlie Ferrell

As many of you know, it’s our commitment to help our agents achieve more! As you can read about here, we take our agent’s needs very seriously. So out of all of our training options, we were excited to see that the Dual Eligibles for Newbies class went so well! We had a great group of agents, both in person and joining us on the simulcast also. If you weren’t able to attend, or if you aren’t contracted with us for a DSNP carrier, here’s the ICYMI Duals for Newbies Wrap-up!

ICYMI Duals for Newbies

Week 1: “What is a Dual Eligible?” –  We spent some time the first week discussing, “what is a dual eligible?” We learned who qualifies and what the different income levels for the different Medicare Savings programs (or MSP’s) are. We also distributed some great handouts with the different qualifications for MSP’s, now updated with the 2017 Federal Poverty level that became effective January 31st, 2017. We covered how Medicaid plans coordinate care and billing (or don’t coordinate and leave it up to the provider). The homework was to drive your neighborhood to find these resources close by.

ICYMI Duals for Newbies

In Case You Missed It (ICYMI): Duals for Newbies

Week 2: “Where to find Dual Eligible members” – The second week, we covered where to find Dual Eligible members. We learned how to use the Census.gov website as well as the HUD housing search tool. We also did several live searches for other community services to see where they are concentrated. Homework was to schedule at least one Medicare Educational event.

Week 3: “Planning your week for max results” – This 3rd session was all about how to plan your week, especially how to vet your potential resources to see if it would be a good match. Our takeaways? Make sure you treat this as a full time job and you will be rewarded with a full-time unlimited income. Plan out your week, month and quarter and set your goals appropriately.

Week 4: “Create a marketing plan” – The 4th and final session was structured around building a marketing plan. As our marketing department always says, you have 2 resources to generate income: time and money. Just a couple changes can increase your sales dramatically. Direct mail is a great way to generate leads quickly and is very affordable. RBI has resources, such as the “Every 5 Sales Drive” which makes more marketing money available based upon your sales. We used the MAPS method to plan a budget and then schedule out a complete week including study time.

What’s the bottom line?

Here’s just a few of the impacts we are seeing already: the production of agents who attended all 4 sessions is 100% higher for the month of January than their production for the month of January in 2016. 75% of all attendees created marketing plans. Best of all, 100% of attendees developed at least 1 new referral source to increase their business. All of our agents had some sales success during the event and were excited to get out and out their newfound knowledge to use. Almost all of them purchased some kind of direct mail piece and community marketing together to jump start the new year.

RBI – we make it happen for you!

If you weren’t able to attend the Dual Eligibles for Newbies class this time around, consider joining us for Webinar Wednesday on February 15 at 10 AM: “Reboot: Finding Dual Eligibles.” This is a great way to kickstart your Dual Eligible game!

Want to get started? Take a look at our carrier-partners to pick up additional contracts! Call RBI at 1-800-997-3107 to speak to one of our sales team! 

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Video: Low Income Subsidy Roll-Up

Did you miss the Webinar Wednesday this week? Here’s a quick review with the What is Low Income Subsidy Roll-Up!

If you are interested in a new way to get energized this new year, you need to watch this What is Low Income Subsidy Roll-Up!

Low Income Subsidy is a federal program to help Medicare recipients who are making less than 150% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL). Low Income Subsidy helps reduce the costs of medications by up to $4000 per year for those who qualify. Because medication non-compliance is the number 1 reason behind hospitalization in this country, it’s important to educate yourself and your clients on the aid that is available. Watch our short 60 Second Roll-up to get the quick basics:

Low Income Subsidy Roll-Up

Look for this symbol on all our new “60 Second Roll-Up” videos!

Now that you’ve got the basics down, register here to watch the recording of the full webinar: “What is Low Income Subsidy?” If you want more information on this important topic, you can check out this article on our blog. Finally, to see what types of programs are available in your state, click here.

Still not sure where to go from here? Call RBI at 1-800-997-3107 and speak with one of our experienced team! We have lots of resources to get your on your way!

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Video: Finding Dual Eligibles Roll-Up

Did you miss this a Webinar Wednesday? Check out our Finding Dual Eligibles Roll-up!

Now that AEP is over, are you struggling to know what’s next? If so, check out our Finding Dual Eligibles Roll-up!

Dual Eligibles are a largely under-served community of Medicare recipients who also qualify for Medicaid.  Dual Eligible clients are a valuable market for agents because they have a year-round special enrollment period or SEP.  If you don’t know much about Dual Eligibles, or would like to get started, we have resources to help you out! Join Charlie Ferrell, National Sales Manager at RB Insurance Group, to learn more. Watch the 60 Second Roll-up below!

Dual Eligibles Roll-up

Look for this symbol on all our new “60 Second Roll-Up” videos!

Dual-Eligible clients offer a great financial opportunity for agents who want to keep their AEP momentum going!  In addition, many agents say that their experiences serving the Dual-Eligible community has been a rich lesson in compassion. If you would like to get involved, click here to access a related blog post.  Finally, to watch the recorded version of the “Finding Dual Eligibles” webinar, click here.

Interested in getting started, but still not quite sure what’s next?  RBI has resources for you! Click here to sign up for our 4-part class “Dual Eligibles for Newbies” or call 1-800-997-3107 to speak to our team!   

Better Results with Community Marketing

ICYMI -La Vida Felicidad Family Fun Festival. How to use community marketing at family oriented events.

Last week I had the pleasure of attending the 3rd annual Family Fun Festival in Los Lunas, New Mexico. More than 600 people showed up for fun and information supporting a great nonprofit, La Vida Felicidad. La Vida supports Life quality for children and families, adults, and seniors, through advocacy and individualized services in collaboration with community partnerships. Most of their relationships are with those that support individuals with developmental disabilities.

Meet More People and Find More Clients with Community Marketing.

Agents are always asking how to get in front of more potential clients. This Family Festival was a perfect example of how to do that. Get out of your booth and explore the event to see who else is there. True, it was not our usual target market yet we still found relationships to nurture and develop ongoing business.  Don’t just sit on your butt waiting for people to come to you, get out there and mix it up! All of these relationships (even with other vendors) are just waiting for you. We haven’t even talked about the grandparents that stopped by our booth who were attending the Festival with their grand-kids.

Community Marketing

Charlie Ferrell Having a great time in Los Lunas, NM

While this wasn’t our normal sales event, the Family Festival was a great place to make community contacts. There were booths for dental and vision services for low income families. All of the major Medicaid providers were there as well. We forged some great relationships (and got their cell numbers) with those individuals that can actually help our clients with their Medicaid issues when they arise.

Native American parents of children with developmental disabilities asked us to speak to their service coordinators next month too. Additional community and tribal resources were also available to assist those families in need. We spoke to everyone we thought we might be able to use as a contact sometime in the future.

Confusion is Common and Your Knowledge is Power.

Most seniors I spoke to agreed that Medicare is quite confusing to someone turning 65 and don’t know where to turn for answers. I had great conversations with a couple of participants that were/are turning 65 soon. I told them to call Social Security and apply for Medicare as soon as they get home. These beneficiaries were just waiting for their Medicare cards to appear. All of their friends told them the cards come in the mail 3 months before you turn 65. It turns out they didn’t know that they had to apply for Medicare because they were not receiving Social Security benefits yet.

They were lucky that one had a birthday in June and the other in July and both are still in their initial enrollment period. Several others stopping by our booth filled out a “Permission to Contact” (PTC) card allowing us to give them a call for this year’s AEP.

Be on the lookout for events being held in your community. Using community marketing, you never know where your next client or contact may come from.

Remember that Sales events must generally be posted with most carriers with a 10 day or 2-week notice. You can hand out business cards and other sales literature and collect PTC cards.  You may discuss plan specific benefits and collect enrollment applications. Educational events do not require any  carrier registration but you can only talk with potential members about Medicare in general terms. You are not allowed to “hand out” business cards but you can make them available on your table and encourage participants to “Take a card”. Any materials must be general in nature. Collecting personal information or PTC of any kind is not allowed.

Contact us for all of your questions regarding how to register a sales event with the carrier. If you have questions about what is or isn’t allowed at marketing events, check out the guide to what a Secret Shopper will be looking for here.  RBI and Medicare Compare really do make it happen for you!

Increase Your Cash Flow with Hospital Indemnity plans

As the National Sales Manager, I have spent countless hours on the road, teaching agents, conducting training sessions, and hosting recruiting events. I have realized that, no matter how diverse my audiences may be, certain things are universal- such as the unmistakable way my audience’s eyes glaze over as soon as I mention Hospital Indemnity plans. Most agents understand Indemnity plans in theory. They also agree that it is important to include a variety of ancillary products in their portfolio. But when it comes down to it, the majority of agents do notHospital Building bother to pitch Indemnity plans to their clients. Whether they don’t fully recognize the value, or the flat out don’t know how to sell it- RBI is here to help!

“Never leave money sitting on the table.” The old sales adage rings true. If you are not selling your clients an indemnity policy to complement their low-premium Medicare Advantage plan, that is EXACTLY what you are doing! Indemnity plans are extremely affordable, and you will quickly become your client’s hero once he or she experiences the benefits after that first hospital visit.

The primary concern of my Medicare Advantage clients is often, “How on earth will I pay for a hospital stay?!” I have also had several clients who grew frustrated with the high cost of Medicare Supplements, yet were afraid to switch to Medicare Advantage with their higher Hospital co-pays.. In either case, my solution was to enroll them into a low-premium (or no-premium) Medicare Advantage plan, along with a hospital indemnity plan for added coverage.

I never sign up a client for the “bare minimum.” It is better to have more coverage and not need it – than to not have it when you need it! Hospital costs continue to rise, and insurance plans evolve, but the health of my clients is generally not improving. I make sure to cover them for a hospital stay a little above and beyond the current hospital copay amounts. I do this because if a higher amount of coverage is needed at a later time, chances are they probably will not be healthy enough to pass the underwriting necessary to increase coverage. So far, not one of my clients has turned down the extra money they received from filing a claim.
RBI offers agents a variety of ancillary product carriers- GTL, Equitable, American Continental and Medico. GTL’s Advantage Plus plan is the only plan with a guaranteed issue period for ages 64 ½ to 65 ½. Bill Ellsworth, Vice President of Equitable, recorded an excellent presentation last year on how to sell hospital indemnity during a Medicare Advantage appointment. Frankly, it is probably the best training example I have ever seen, and I strongly recommend all Equitable agents seek it out on the Equiline broker site. Following Bill’s outline, I am confident you will be able to increase your commissions throughout the year.

Health products are the only products you can discuss during a Medicare appointment. You must make sure your client understands the need as you make your presentation. Show them the holes in their current plan, then fill it with an indemnity policy. All of the indemnity products can be cross-sold during an MA appointment. There is even a “Hospital Indemnity Plan” checkbox on the generic CMS-approved Scope of Appointment form most of us already use.

An Indemnity Webinar Invitation

Join us on Thursday, April 7th at 10:00 am (MST) for a webinar about how to cross sell indemnity products year round to protect your clients and increase your commissions. This is particularly important since carriers are now prorating all MA commissions other than a person that is new to Medicare.