Your Clients Need to Know These Tips for National Preparedness Month

September is National Preparedness Month, a time for your clients to prep for and practice how to handle disasters. This year’s theme: Disasters Happen. Prepare Now. Learn How.

When disaster strikes, time is of the essence. That’s why it’s crucial for your clients to not only have a plan of action but to also have materials they may need gathered in a safe location and to practice their plan before it’s too late.

From wildfires to hurricanes to tornados to earthquakes, your clients may face a wide range of hazardous conditions. Protecting their families can include learning life-saving skills such as first aid and CPR, collecting provisions such as food and water, securing cash and important documents such as insurance policies, and taking practical steps such as shutting off water and gas.

The Department of Homeland Security’s yearly awareness campaign invites your clients to get a plan of action ready, and we ask you as their agents to do the same.

Here are the month’s weekly themes:

Week 1 September 1-8: Make and Practice Your Plan

Talk to your clients about:

  • Making an emergency plan
  • Signing up for alerts and warnings in their areas
  • Learning their evacuation zones
  • Practicing their plan
Week 2: September 9-15: Learn Life-Saving Skills

Talk to your clients about:

  • Knowing basic home maintenance
  • Learning how to turn off utilities
  • Testing smoke alarms throughout their homes
  • Learning life-saving skills such as CPR
Week 3: September 16-22: Check Your Insurance Coverage

Talk to your clients about:

  • Checking their insurance policies for adequate coverage
  • Learning about other types of insurance they may need for their loved ones and their homes
Week 4: September 23-29: Save For an Emergency

Talk to your clients about:

  • Planning their finances for possible disasters
  • Maintain emergency savings

In times of disaster, quality health insurance may help your clients face challenges brought about by hazardous conditions. Help them make proper preparations for themselves and their loved ones. Make sure they know about:

 

Visit the National Preparedness Month campaign website for more information on this significant opportunity to raise awareness.

 

Note that STM and limited benefit insurance do not count as minimum essential coverage required by the Affordable Care Act. They are not sufficient forms of coverage to avoid facing a tax penalty. They are not suitable to serve as sole medical coverage. Review any policy terms, conditions, limitations, exclusions, and/or restrictions with your clients prior to making any product recommendations.

 

Are you ready to learn more about helping your clients choose quality and affordable coverage today?

Learn more by:

Calling 1.877.376.5831 and selecting option 3

Emailing salessupport@hiiquote.com

 

Click here to like us on Facebook for important industry updates, tips, and articles!

 

Health Insurance Innovations, Inc. (HIIQ) – (NASDAQ: HIIQ), is a market leading cloud-based technology platform and distributor of innovative health insurance products that are affordable and meet the consumer’s needs. 

For agent use only – not for use with the general public

4 Common Misconceptions to Clear Up for Your Clients About Health Benefit Insurance

Your clients come to you with a broad range of health concerns and ask for a personalized approach to help them manage those concerns.  It’s crucial to your success that you listen to and understand those needs and that you have a variety of coverage options to offer them.

One of those options often prompts questions and discussions of myths and misconceptions: health benefit insurance plans – also known as limited benefit medical plans or fixed cash plans. HBI plans provide a fixed benefit payment for specific covered services. They can provide a range of benefits to help meet your clients’ needs, but they have distinct differences from the major medical policies.

Healthcare costs are undoubtedly rising. Your assistance in providing your clients coverage that fits their needs can impact how they are able to manage their healthcare spending. This type of coverage can often be misunderstood, prompting your clients to ask questions about how the plans work and how they can benefit from such a plan. HBI coverage can be a viable option, but it’s imperative to understand your clients’ needs and to make sure they understand how the coverage works before enrolling them.

Let’s take a look at some common misconceptions about health benefit insurance coverage:

Misconception #1: Health benefit insurance plans work the same way as major medical or short-term medical insurance.

HBI insurance plans have some significant differences from major medical policies. Helping your clients understand these differences can allow them to decide if this type of coverage will be helpful as they consider their healthcare realities.

These plans pay fixed indemnity benefits towards covered procedures as well as offer discounted rates for using in-network providers. They can provide flexibility for those who need to supplement their major medical coverage.

When discussing health benefit insurance plans with your clients, remind them that they have no deductibles or copays to satisfy, and let them know that their fixed cash benefits and in-network discounts can combine to bring them additional savings. Clients must also understand the plans are not a replacement for major medical insurance. Policies do have limitations, restrictions, and exclusions to consider.

Misconception #2: Health benefit insurance plans don’t provide quality benefits and have a small network of doctors.

HBI insurance plans often have lower premiums than major medical plans since they are not providing comprehensive coverage. That said, they may still provide members with a host of benefits to help with their medical needs.

The core benefits offered by health benefit insurance plans can include fixed benefit payments for the following services:

  • Hospitalization*
  • Emergency care*
  • Doctor’s office visits
  • Surgery*
  • Diagnostics and labs
  • Wellness

*Typically not covered for pre-existing conditions

This level of coverage can also come with a wide network of doctors nationwide. If the doctor your client chooses does not accept the insurance, your client can opt to pay upfront and then submit her own claims for reimbursement. Remind her though she may be subject to higher out-of-pocket costs if she goes this route.

When your clients enroll in HBI plans, they may also have the option to take advantage of other non-insurance healthcare features as well.

These may include:

  • Prescription savings program on generic and brand-name medications
  • Ability to speak to a licensed doctor over the phone or mobile app to diagnose common illnesses
  • Patient advocacy service that can help your clients find procedures for the lowest cost and can negotiate medical bills

Keep in mind that there are often exclusions with health benefit insurance plans that are important for your clients to consider before they enroll.

Exclusions may include:

  • Pre-existing conditions (12-month waiting period)
  • Prescription benefits
  • Maternity benefits

Make sure your clients are aware of how to leverage our online Member Portal. This includes knowing how to log into the portal, where to access their ID cards, and how to reach out to the different parties who can help them with questions about benefits, billing, claims, etc.

Misconception #3: Health benefit insurance plans are only beneficial for young people or as supplementary insurance.

HBI insurance plans can benefit clients of all ages with varying medical needs.

While this level of coverage is designed to be supplementary to major medical policies, members can use them in a variety of circumstances.

This type of coverage may fit the needs of those who:

  • Are priced out of major medical coverage, but seek a limited level of coverage for basic healthcare needs
  • Want additional benefits to help cover deductibles and copays of a major medical policy
  • Are seeking limited coverage until they are eligible for a major medical policy during Open Enrollment or through their employer

Note: Health benefit insurance plans are not intended to be a replacement or alternative to ACA or other major medical plans nor does it provide the minimum essential health benefits that are required, and it won’t help to avoid the fee for not carrying health insurance. These plans can have exclusions and limitations, which may not make them a valid option for some clients.

Misconception #4: Health benefit insurance plans can satisfy ACA requirements.

Fixed benefit insurance plans do not meet the minimum essential coverage required under the Affordable Care Act, so your clients would likely be subject to a tax penalty. Because they do not have to follow the guidelines for the ACA, premiums tend to be lower as more limited and/or restricted benefits are being offered. Still, these plans can be useful solutions for some who may need to supplement a high-deductible plan or who may otherwise go completely uninsured.

 

Are you ready to help your clients learn more about health benefit insurance plans?

Learn more by:

Click here to like us on Facebook for important industry updates, tips, and articles!

Health Insurance Innovations, Inc. is a leading developer and administrator of affordable, web-based individual health insurance plans and ancillary products. We help consumers address their health insurance needs by offering access to a number of products offered by various insurance carriers.

Source:

“The Rising Cost of Health Care by Year and Its Causes.” The Balance. https://www.thebalance.com/causes-of-rising-healthcare-costs-4064878

 

Healthcare solutions for college students

Meet College Students and Recent Grads at the Coverage Table with These Health Care Solutions

“Summertime is always the best of what might be.”

–Charles Bowden

Ah, the sand, the sun, the memories made, and the fun. Summer has settled in across the country, and we’re all finding ways to celebrate. But the lull between semesters and before graduation can see the celebration for some to come to a screeching halt: 72% of college students and recent grads are struggling to find affordable health insurance.

With 40% of this demographic mostly concerned about the cost of premiums and 20% concerned about high out-of-pocket costs, these prospective clients will undoubtedly have questions for you this summer. They may be coming off their student coverage through their universities or their parents’ health plans or they may be waiting for coverage sponsored by their new employers to begin. They may also be priced out of traditional major medical coverage as well. Short-term medical plans may be just what they need.

STM plans can include benefits and features such as:

  • Flexibility in cost depending on benefits selected
  • Variety of deductible and coinsurance options
  • Benefits that are paid in a similar manner to traditional major medical plans
  • Wellness options
  • Little to no waiting periods
  • Next day coverage for some carriers
  • Relatively inexpensive premiums due to lower and more restricted benefits
  • Low-cost doctor and specialist copays depending on plan selected
  • Open network of physicians, specialists, and hospital depending on plan selected

It’s not just the college students and recent grads who are concerned. Their families may have questions about what makes sense as well. It’s important to make sure all those concerned understand what benefits STM plans may offer as well as their limitations. This level of coverage is available at any time in the year and can be cancelled at any time. It can also offer access to providers of their choice, including providers they visited through their parents’ health coverage. If they need to change providers, STM plans provide them the opportunity to file their own claim and submit for reimbursement if needed.

However, STM coverage does not provide the minimum essential health benefits required by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and will not help them avoid the penalty for not carrying health insurance. At this time, STM plans also have a maximum duration of 3 months. Continuation of coverage requires re-application and there are also limits on how many times someone can re-apply. In addition, pre-existing conditions may not be covered. Benefits vary by plan and state and may not include those that are listed above. Make sure your clients review any plans they’re considering carefully.

If these clients aren’t eligible for STM coverage and priced out of ACA coverage, they may find health benefit insurance plans (commonly known as limited benefit medical plans) to fit their healthcare needs.

Health benefit insurance plans are designed to provide a wide variety of expenses for accidental injuries, sickness, inpatient surgical care, outpatient care, and even pre-existing conditions. Plans vary as to which specific expenses they cover, but often times, this level of coverage may provide little to no waiting periods, access to doctors nationwide, and benefits for critical illness and/or accidental death.

HBI coverage can also offer benefits and features such as:

  • Freedom to choose any doctor or hospital of their choice
  • Guaranteed issue coverage with $50-$100 paid toward doctor and specialist visits
  • Next day coverage or little to no waiting periods for accidental injuries or sickness
  • 12 month waiting period for pre-existing conditions
  • Ability to supplement existing coverage
  • Access to non-insurance benefits such as a prescription savings program, 24/7/365 video and phone access to quality physicians, and a patient advocacy service

Before enrolling your clients into this level of coverage, please make sure they understand that it does not count as minimum essential coverage required by the Affordable Care Act and is not suitable to serve as their only medical coverage. Although the premiums may be lower than a major medical plan, the benefits are also lower and more restricted.

Benefits offered vary by plan and states. Not available in all states.

Are you ready to help college students and recent grads enroll in the coverage they need today?

Learn more today by:

Calling 1.877.376.5831 and selecting option 3

Emailing salessupport@hiiquote.com

Health Insurance Innovations, Inc. is a leading developer and administrator of affordable, web-based individual health insurance plans and ancillary products. We help consumers address their health insurance needs by offering access to a number of products offered by various insurance carriers.

For agent use only – not for use with the general public

Walk Your Clients into Improved Health for National Women’s Health Week

Each year during National Women’s Health Week, millions of women take steps to improve their health. The 19th annual National Women’s Health Week kicks off on May 13 and serves as a reminder for women to make our health a priority and to build positive health habits for life.

During your consultations with clients this week, remind them of this health observance and provide them with information and resources they need to get them on a journey toward better and long-lasting health.

Here’s how your office can participate in the 19th annual National Women’s Health Week:
  • Share the following tips with you clients
  • Take the National Women’s Health Week quiz to test your knowledge about healthy living
  • Show your fellow agents that you’re making women’s health a priority with these social media resources and use the #NWHW hashtag
  • Participate online or organize activities within office
The journey to create improved health habits can include:
 For every decade, it’s important for your clients to:

*Make sure your clients know how their health coverage works when it comes to well-woman visits. This preventive visit is essential to women’s health, as it’s a time for them to check in on how they’re doing, how they’d like to be doing, and what changes they can make to reach their health goals.

For Clients in Their 20s

 A client in this decade should ask her doctor at least once a year about:

  •  Whether she plans to have children in the next year or the right birth control
  • Her weight, diet, and physical activity level
  • Her tobacco and alcohol use
  • Any violence in her life
  • Depression and any other mental health concerns
  • Her family health history, especially of heart disease and cancer (these are the top two fatal diseases for women in the United States and are often linked to diet and lifestyle choices)
  • Protecting herself from the sun and the hazards of tanning

She should also ask if she needs these tests, medicines, or vaccines:

  • Blood pressure
  • Chickenpox
  • Cholesterol
  • Flu
  • Hepatitis B and C
  • HIV
  • HPV vaccine (26 and younger*)
  • Measles, mumps, and rubella
  • Pap (21 and older*)
  • Sexually transmitted infections (including chlamydia and gonorrhea tests for women 24 and younger*)
  • Tetanus, diphtheria, or whooping cough
  • Tuberculosis

If she is pregnant, prenatal care can also be a well-woman visit. There are also certain tests during pregnancy to check her and her baby’s health. Click here to learn more.

* Suggested by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommendations and may not apply to every person

For Clients in Their 30s

A client in this decade should ask her doctor at least once a year about:

  •  Whether she plans to have children in the next year or the right birth control
  • Her weight, diet, and physical activity level
  • Her tobacco and alcohol use
  • Any violence in her life
  • Depression and any other mental health concerns
  • Her family health history, especially of heart disease and cancer (these are the top two fatal diseases for women in the United States and are often linked to diet and lifestyle choices)

She should also ask if she needs these tests, medicines, or vaccines:

  • Blood pressure
  • Chickenpox
  • Cholesterol
  • Flu
  • Hepatitis B and C
  • HIV
  • Measles, mumps, and rubella
  • Pap and HPV
  • Sexually transmitted infections
  • Tetanus, diphtheria, or whooping cough
  • Tuberculosis

If she is pregnant, prenatal care can also be a well-woman visit. There are also certain tests during pregnancy to check her and her baby’s health. Click here to learn more.

For Clients in Their 40s

A client in this decade should ask her doctor at least once a year about:

  •  Whether she plans to have children in the next year or the right birth control (for premenopausal women)
  • Perimenopause symptoms
  • Her weight, diet, and physical activity level
  • Her tobacco and alcohol use
  • Any violence in her life
  • Depression and any other mental health concerns
  • Her family health history, especially of heart disease and cancer (these are the top two fatal diseases for women in the United States and are often linked to diet and lifestyle choices)

She should also ask if she needs these tests, medicines, or vaccines:

  • Blood pressure
  • Chickenpox
  • Cholesterol
  • Diabetes
  • Flu
  • Hepatitis B and C
  • HIV
  • Mammogram
  • Measles, mumps, and rubella
  • Pap and HPV
  • Sexually transmitted infections
  • Tetanus, diphtheria, or whooping cough
  • Tuberculosis

If she is pregnant, prenatal care can also be a well-woman visit. There are also certain tests during pregnancy to check her and her baby’s health. Click here to learn more.

For Clients in Their 50s

A client in this decade should ask her doctor at least once a year about:

  • Menopause symptoms
  • Your weight, diet, and physical activity level
  • Your tobacco and alcohol use
  • Any violence in your life
  • Depression and any other mental health concerns
  • Your family health history, especially of heart disease and cancer (these are the top two fatal diseases for women in the United States and are often linked to diet and lifestyle choices)

She should also ask if she needs these tests, medicines, or vaccines:

  • Low-dose aspirin
  • Blood pressure
  • Chickenpox
  • Cholesterol
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Flu
  • Hepatitis B and C
  • HIV
  • Lung cancer (55 and older*)
  • Mammogram
  • Measles, mumps, and rubella
  • Pap and HPV
  • Sexually transmitted infections
  • Tetanus, diphtheria, or whooping cough
  • Tuberculosis

* Suggested by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommendations and may not apply to every person

As you work with your clients to determine which type of coverage will help them tackle these health concerns and meet their budget and lifestyle needs, it’s crucial to review the basics with them.

If health benefit insurance is an option for them, discuss features such as:

  • Helpful for those anticipating rising medical expenses, unable to afford major medical, not eligible for short-term medical, and/or looking for supplemental coverage to their major medical plans
  • Guaranteed issue coverage if eligibility is met and available in state
  • Premiums often lower than major medical, but also lower and more restricted benefits
  • Benefits such as $50-$100 paid toward doctor and specialist visits available
  • Not required to use a network of doctors – freedom to choose any doctor or facility (*Note: clients can still exceed eligible benefits)
  • Preventive care available for as low as $50
  • Next day coverage available or little to no waiting periods for accidental injuries or sickness
  • 12 month waiting period for pre-existing conditions
  • Does not count as minimum essential coverage required by the Affordable Care Act and is not suitable to serve as sole medical coverage

If short-term medical is an option for them, discuss features such as:

  • Helpful for those facing life-altering transition periods such as pre-Medicare retirement, change in employment status, rolling off parental or student insurance, bridging a gap in major medical coverage or those who missed Open Enrollment (*Note: these policies are designed solely to provide healthcare coverage during unexpected coverage gaps)
  • Flexibility in coverage length and cost; coverage duration varies by state and is non-renewable
  • Variety of deductible and coinsurance options
  • Low copay options for in-network benefits
  • Limited preventive care available
  • Ability to cancel at any time without penalty
  • Benefits may be limited and subject to exclusions and restrictions
  • Does not cover pre-existing conditions
  • Coverage is not guaranteed
  • Not intended to be a replacement or alternative to ACA or other major medical plans and does not provide the minimum essential health benefits that are required; may result in a tax penalty

Disclaimer: Health benefit insurance and short-term medical coverage are not intended to be a replacement or alternative to ACA or other major medical plans nor does it provide the minimum essential health benefits that are required and it won’t help to avoid the fee for not carrying health insurance. They can have exclusions and limitations, which may not make them a valid option for some clients.

Show your clients that women’s health is a priority to you this week and every week. Provide them with affordable and quality coverage options that allow them to easily get the healthcare they need for every decade.

Learn more today by:

Click here to like us on Facebook for important industry updates, tips, and articles!

This blog is for informational purposes only and is not intended to make any product recommendations. Encourage your clients to review any product details, such as costs, limitations, exclusions, restrictions, and benefits prior to any purchasing decisions.

Health Insurance Innovations, Inc. is a leading developer and administrator of affordable, web-based individual health insurance plans and ancillary products. We help consumers address their health insurance needs by offering access to a number of products offered by various insurance carriers.

Many thanks to the Office of Women’s Health for this information and their work on behalf of women.

For more information on National Women’s Health Week as well as resources on a variety of trending topics in women’s health, wellness, and medical conditions, please click here.

 

For agent use only – not for use with the general public