Dual eligibility is your sales opportunity

Seniors who are eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid, otherwise known as dual eligibles, are truly an untapped market. It’s estimated that approximately 8.3 million people in the United States are covered by both Medicare and Medicaid, including low-income seniors and low-income individuals with a disability who are 18 or older. CMS recently reported that 11 percent of these dual eligibles nationwide are enrolled in a Dual Special Needs Plan, which agents can sell year-round as part of their portfolio of products.

Dual Special Needs Plans are a type of Medicare Advantage plan administered by private carriers like United Healthcare and often include extra benefits not covered by Medicare or Medicaid such as Dental, Vision, Hearing Aids, OTC and non-emergency medical transportation. In addition to these needed extra benefits, having a Medicare Advantage Special Needs plan simplifies things for the enrollee — he or she will have to worry about just one card instead of three to access health benefits and prescription coverage, and he or she will have just one customer service line to call should there be an issue. Another selling point is that Special Needs plans offer care coordination so clients have help managing multiple or chronic conditions.

One of the best ways to reach out to dual-eligible prospects is with community marketing. Community marketing simply refers to getting yourself in front of as many individuals who could use some advice about their insurance options as you can. Whether it’s volunteering at a food bank or a Special Olympics event (something I enjoyed doing when I lived in SLC), people see that you really care and are much more likely to send potential clients to you when you give back to your community and let people know you are there to help. So many families are looking for a helpful guide because they often don’t know where to start when it comes to benefits.

You can focus your marketing efforts at key places I’ll list below if you are interested in selling dual-eligible plans. Remember I’m just giving you a starting point — I’ve known agents who have expanded their community marketing beyond what I have here. Also, some carriers expect you to let them know you are marketing to potential beneficiaries in HUD or Section 8 housing.

Here are the Top 10 places for dual-eligible marketing and Lead generation:
1. Section 8 housing
2. County housing authorities apartment buildings or HUD housing
3. Senior centers
4. Area agency on aging or counseling groups
5. Faith-based organizations or churches
6. Food banks or pantries
7. Support groups for foster grandparents
8. Thrift stores like Goodwill
9. Senior expos and health fairs (Check out Senior Broker Trainer Tom O’Neil’s post on marketing yourself at these events)
10. Non-profit organizations supporting those with disabilities (Click here to read my community marketing story with Special Olympics Utah)

For more specific information about marketing to dual-eligible seniors as part of your senior insurance business, give me a call at (800) 997 3107 or email me with your questions. I’m happy to give you more specific advice for your market.