affordable-insurance-options-for-college-graduates

Seasons Change and So Do Coverage Needs: College Students and Recent Grads Hit the Short-Term Market

Spring is upon us – though more apparent in some parts of the country than others – and that means summer is warming up right around the corner. That also means the spring semester will end soon at colleges and universities across the country, leaving many students and recent graduates with expired health coverage.

Past reports of short-term medical enrollment have ranged widely from 160,000 to 850,0001, but that number seems likely to grow this year. Not only do summer months see college students and recent graduates flocking to the short-term market1 but public awareness of the market has also increased significantly.

A recent poll shows 31%1 of consumers polled indicated they are familiar with it and an additional 10.4%1 indicated they have used such coverage. Compare that to 7% of consumers who were aware of the coverage option in 2017, and it’s clear that continued growth is forthcoming.

Are you prepared to help this specific audience find coverage that fits their needs this summer?

Here’s how short-term medical coverage may be their solution until they can choose a longer term solution:
  • Provides flexibility in cost and length of coverage
  • Offers choice of deductible and coinsurance options
  • Delivers low copay options
  • Secures ability to cancel without penalty at any time

Understanding the needs and concerns of college students and recent graduates is imperative when helping them select coverage. According to a recent poll2, 72% expressed concern over the cost of healthcare coverage, with 40% worried about the cost of monthly premiums and 20% anxious about out-of-pocket expenses.

With that in mind, these coverage highlights are crucial to the conversation:
  • Provides wellness options
  • Often offers lower rates than traditional health plans
  • Affords a low cost layer of financial protection from rising healthcare costs
  • Offers choice of deductible as low as $250

Note that with STM, clients are not buying an ACA health plan. The following need to  be kept in mind by any prospects:

  • STM coverage does not provide the minimum essential health benefits required by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and will not help to avoid the fee for not carrying health insurance. STM plans are not guaranteed issue, do not cover pre-existing conditions, and require a series of medical questions to be answered
  • Plans vary in what is covered, check any plans carefully prior to making a purchasing decision

In addition to college students and recent graduates, other prospective clients who are facing life-altering transition periods may find short-term medical meets their needs.

These include:
  • Pre-Medicare retirement
  • Change in employment status
  • Missed Open Enrollment
  • Rolling off parental insurance
  • Filling a gap in your major medical coverage

Are you ready to address the needs of this growing market’s diverse audiences?

Learn more today by:

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

 

Sources:

1: “Poll: Spike in Short-term Health Insurance Public Awareness. AgileHealthInsurance.com.” March 14, 2018 https://www.agilehealthinsurance.com/health-insurance-learning-center/short-term-health-insurance-public-awareness-survey

 

2: “Poll: 72% of College Students and Recent Grads Have Challenges Finding Affordable Health Insurance. ” June 20, 2017. https://www.agilehealthinsurance.com/health-insurance-learning-center/student-health-insurance-survey

 

 

health-insurance-innovations-coverages

Clean Up Your Clients’ Coverage Needs for National Kidney Month

Spring cleaning season is upon us, a fitting time to raise awareness of kidney health. March is National Kidney Month, and the National Kidney Foundation is using the month to encourage Americans to visit their healthcare professionals for a checkup. As an agent, you have the opportunity to talk to your clients about this health observance as well as the importance of having the coverage they need to meet their kidney health concerns.

Let’s take a look at why the kidneys are so imperative to our health1:

  • They filter waste out of 200 liters of blood each day
  • They regulate of the body’s salt, potassium and acid content
  • They remove drugs from the body
  • They balance the body’s fluids
  • They release hormones that regulate blood pressure
  • They produce an active form of vitamin D that promotes strong, healthy bones
  • They control the production of red blood cells

As you work with clients this month to identify their ideal coverage, take this opportunity to remind them about these startling statistics1:

  • Kidney disease is the 9th leading cause of death in the country
  • More than 30 million Americans have kidney disease, and most don’t know it
  • There are over 95,000 people waiting for kidney transplants
  • More than 590,000 people have kidney failure in the US today

So what can your clients do to protect the health of their kidneys? Consider these recommendations:

  • Eat a whole food, plant-based diet2. Your clients can learn about meals focusing on veggies, fruits, whole grains, lentils, etc and more plant-based options herehere, and here.
  • Eat meals that include plant protein, as research shows they reduce mortality in chronic kidney disease3.
  • Know what healthy kidneys do and how to recognize symptoms of chronic kidney disease4. Your clients can click here to take an online assessment to rate their risk.
  • Maintain a healthy weight, stay active, and monitor their blood sugar level5.
  • Stop smoking6. Your clients can click here for tips to help them stop.

Talk to your clients about their available coverage options today and how that coverage may help them protect their kidney health. With many options that include guaranteed acceptance, low cost preventative care and office visits, freedom to choose healthcare professionals, and low deductibles and copays, short-term medical coverage may fit their needs, especially if they are:

  • Transitioning between jobs
  • Waiting for employer insurance to begin
  • Graduating from college
  • Rolling off parents’ coverage
  • Waiting for Medicare coverage to become effective

Note: Short-term medical coverage may be an appropriate fit for your clients.  However, it’s important for you and your clients to understand that such coverage does not replace major medical insurance, and it is does not count as minimum essential coverage required by the Affordable Care Act. Limitations, restrictions, and exclusions may apply.

Learn more how short-term medical coverage can provide an avenue to healthcare by:

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

Sources:

1: “Focus on the Kidneys During National Kidney Month in March.” National Kidney Foundation. https://www.kidney.org/news/monthly/Focus_KidneyMonth

2: “Can a Whole Food, Plant-Based Diet Help to Preserve Kidney Health?” T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies.  https://nutritionstudies.org/can-whole-food-plant-based-diet-help-preserve-kidney-health/

3: “Plant Protein Reduces Mortality in Chronic Kidney Disease Patients.” National Kidney Foundation. https://www.kidney.org/news/plant-protein-reduces-mortality-chronic-kidney-disease-patients

4: “Six-Step Guide to Protecting Kidney Health.” National Kidney Foundation. https://www.kidney.org/atoz/content/sixstepshealthprimer

5: “8 Golden Rules: What Can You Do for Your Kidneys?” World Kidney Day. http://www.worldkidneyday.org/faqs/take-care-of-your-kidneys/8-golden-rules/

6: “What Effects Does Smoking Have on the Kidneys?” LiveStrong.comhttps://www.livestrong.com/article/266870-what-effects-does-smoking-have-on-the-kidneys/

 

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 public

 

healthy-heart-tips-hiiq

Here’s How to Endorse Your Clients’ Heart Health for American Heart Month

Every year, 1 in 4 deaths are caused by heart disease. It is the leading cause of death of women and of men in the United States1.

Consider these lifestyle factors:

  • Diet is a major contributor to this deadly disease: 90% of Americans consume too much sodium, increasing their risk for high blood pressure2.
  • The standard American diet emphasizes foods such as processed meats, deep-fried indulgences, soft drinks, cookies, sweets, a tradition that is likely to work against your clients’ heart health3.
  • Most kids by the age of 10 in the United States have fatty streaks in their arteries4.

This month is American Heart Month, an ideal opportunity to talk to your clients about heart health, risk factors for heart disease, and how to work with their doctors, insurance carriers, and loved ones to prevent this deadly disease.

Encourage them to consider these statistics:

  • Following a heart attack, approximately 1 in 4 women and 1 in 5 men will die within the first year2.
  • Only 1 in 3 Hispanic women are aware that heart disease is their #1 killer5.
  • Cardiovascular diseases kill nearly 50,000 African-American women annually6.
  • Of African-American women ages 20 and older, 49% have heart diseases6.
  • African Americans experience strokes at a higher rate than other races, and other groups, including Hispanics and women, are also at higher risk6.

But there is good news: heart disease can often be prevented when your clients make healthy choices and learn to manage their health. Research shows that controlling risks such as obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and smoking can reduce risk of heart attack or stroke by more than 80%1. Plant-based diets have also been shown to stop and prevent heart disease with plant-based diets7 and to quickly lower cholesterol levels8 and blood pressure9.

When it comes to their coverage needs, you may clients who are concerned about the possibility of facing cardiovascular concerns. Encourage them to consider critical illness coverage options that can help them feel confident in their financial future in such unfortunate circumstances.

Critical illness insurance will provide a lump-sum cash benefit. These benefits can be used as your clients see fit for expenses such as:

  • Living expenses such as mortgage, rent, and car payments
  • Prescriptions
  • Copays and deductibles
  • Medical bills
  • Medical equipment and home modifications for recovery
  • Treatment-related travel expenses such as parking, pet boarding, food, fuel, and hotel stays
  • Non-covered experimental treatments

With critical illness coverage, your clients can:

  • Choose benefits amounts up to $50,000 (lifetime maximum)
  • Take advantage of little to no waiting period
  • Feel confident in knowing they will have additional financial help in the event that something happens

Note that policies may be subject to various exclusions and limitations. Ensure your clients understand these prior to making a purchasing decision.

Learn more about how critical illness options may be ideal for your clients by:

 

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.

 

Sources:

 

 

Help Your Clients Face 2018 with Health Benefit Insuran

Help Your Clients Face 2018 with Health Benefit Insurance

Health benefit insurance plans can help your clients find some financial accord as they face certain health concerns by providing set amounts of money for covered medical services. Also referred to as fixed cash or limited-benefit indemnity coverage, these plans provide supplemental benefits to your clients that they can use to pay medical expenses such as copays and deductibles or other expenses such as rent and daily lifestyle needs.

Value

This level of coverage can provide your clients with a wide variety of benefits in the face of accidental injuries, sickness, inpatient surgical care, outpatient care, and even pre-existing conditions (subject to waiting period.) Coverage varies from plan to plan, but health benefit insurance plans can provide little to no waiting periods with access to doctors nationwide, and benefits for critical illness and/or accidental death.

Features

Your clients can take advantage of a variety of features that help make their healthcare more accessible:

  • Freedom to choose any doctor or hospital of your clients’ choice
  • Guaranteed issue coverage
  • Low cost preventative care
  • Next day coverage or little to no waiting periods for accidental injuries or sickness
  • 12 month waiting period for pre-existing conditions

How it works

When your clients choose health benefit insurance coverage, they are choosing a type of coverage that pays them directly instead of paying healthcare providers. They simply submit a claim after a qualified medical expense and receive payment that they can use as needed. There are no deductibles to meet.

Limitations

Health benefit insurance coverage does not count as minimum essential coverage required by the Affordable Care Act and is not suitable to serve as your clients’ only medical coverage. Although the premiums may be lower than a major medical plan, the benefits are also lower and more restricted. Benefits are preset and may not necessarily be sufficient to cover the total bill for medical services received. Before recommending plans to consumers, ensure they understand what is and isn’t covered.

Help your clients take on 2018 with affordable, quality supplemental coverage today! 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.

 

For agent use only – not for use with the public

 

Road to Expand Short-Term Medical Offerings is Wide Open in 2018

Short-term medical (STM) coverage, a type of health insurance designed to help bridge gaps in your clients’ health coverage, offers consumers flexibility in coverage length and cost. While it does not provide the minimum essential health benefits by the Affordable Care Act (ACA), it can serve as an affordable option for those facing life-altering transition periods.

2018 and STM coverage

Because STM plans don’t have to adhere to ACA regulations, consumers “would have a wider array of options with lower monthly rates1.” Current legislative reform attempts are expected to make room for more STM plans2.  While “these policies can exclude those with pre-existing conditions or base rates on consumers’ medical history” and “offer skimpier benefits1,” major insurance carriers, including UnitedHealth and Aetna, have expressed interest in expanding their portfolios with STM offerings3:

UnitedHealth president and COO Dan Schumacher: “…we are excited to see [the regulation on STM plans that limited length of coverage] extended to the full year, because the reality is it provides a bridge for people in between coverage3.”

Aetna CEO Mark Bertolini: “We are actually looking at reenergizing a program we had prior to the ACA, but in a more on a focus of short-term, one-year kind of plan, or transition plan, versus just the skinny benefit…4.”

Who benefits from STM coverage?

This level of coverage may fit the needs of your clients who are:

  • Transitioning between jobs
  • Waiting for employer insurance to begin
  • Graduating from college
  • Rolling off parents’ coverage
  • Waiting for Medicare coverage to become effective

What are some of the features that STM plans provide?

  • Your clients can choose this level of coverage at any time in the year.
  • Your clients can choose from a variety of plans, many of which include preventive care for individuals as well as for families.
  • Because benefits are more restricted or limited, your clients can take advantage of rates that are often lower than major medical coverage.
  • Your clients can often see providers of their choice. If a provider does not file a claim for your client in office, your clients can easily submit their own claims to the carrier for reimbursement.
Disclaimer: STM coverage is 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.

Learn more about incorporating short-term medical coverage into your portfolio 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.

For agent use only – not for use with the public

Sources:

1: “What happened to Trump’s big plans for insurance?” WCPO.com.  https://www.wcpo.com/news/national/what-happened-to-trump-s-big-plans-for-health-insurance-?page=2

2: “From premiums to politics: 5 predictions for the health insurance industry in 2018.” Leslie Small.  https://www.fiercehealthcare.com/payer/year-preview-predictions-politics-aca-mergers

3: “UnitedHealth’s (UNH) CEO David Wichmann on Q3 2017 Results – Earnings Call Transcript.” SeekingAlpha.com.  https://seekingalpha.com/article/4114057-unitedhealths-unh-ceo-david-wichmann-q3-2017-results-earnings-call-transcript?part=single

4: “Aetna (AET) Q3 2017 Results –  Earnings Call Transcript.” SeekingAlpha.comhttps://seekingalpha.com/article/4118741-aetna-aet-q3-2017-results-earnings-call-transcript?part=single

 

Tips to Help You Talk to Your Clients About Cervical Health Awareness

Tips to Help You Talk to Your Clients About Cervical Health Awareness

The new year is here, and so is a clean slate for many of your clients as they set new goals for their health and wellness. You’re in the position to guide those clients to coverage options with features and benefits that fit their lifestyle and health needs.

You also have the opportunity to raise awareness among your clients about important health observances such as Cervical Health Awareness Month during January. It’s the ideal time to make sure your clients’ coverage addresses any concerns they or their dependents may have about cervical health and to direct them and/or their loved ones to resources related to cervical health.

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the National Cervical Cancer Coalition (NCCC), and the American Cancer Society (ACS) have many resources detailing how pervasive HPV and cervical cancer are.

Consider these stats:  

  • At any time, there are approximately 79 million people in the United States with HPV1.
  • There are 14 million new HPV infections in the United States each year1.
  • HPV is so common that most people get it at some time in their lives and usually causes no symptoms2.
  • If HPV does not go away on its own, there is a chance that over time it may cause cervical cancer2.
  • While the cervical cancer death rate has gone down by more than 50% thanks to the increased use of the Pap test, nearly 13,000 new cases of invasive cervical cancer are estimated to have been diagnosed in 20173.

Benefits offered by short-term medical and limited medical coverage that may be helpful to your clients worried about their cervical health include:

  • Open network of physicians, specialists, and hospitals
  • Variety of deductible and coinsurance options
  • Low copay options for in-network benefits
  • Paid benefits similar to traditional major medical plans
  • Next day coverage
  • Deductibles as low as $250
  • Relatively inexpensive premiums, but may result in lower and more restricted benefits
  • Guaranteed acceptance for some products, if eligibility is met and available in state

Short-term medical coverage or limited medical coverage may be the best fit for some of your clients. However, it’s important for you and your clients to understand these products do not replace major medical insurance, and they do not count as minimum essential coverage required by the Affordable Care Act. These products are not intended to serve as sole medical coverage. Limitations, restrictions, and exclusions may apply.

As an agent, your clients rely on your expertise to make sure they have access to affordable, quality coverage with benefits that help them face specific concerns. Take your expertise one step further by promoting awareness resources about specific health concerns such as cervical health throughout the year.

Learn more about expanding your portfolio with short-term medical and limited medical plans by:

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

Sources:

1: “Ten Things to Know About HPV and Cervical Cancer.” National Cervical Cancer Coalition. http://www.nccc-online.org/images/pdfs/10ThingsHPV_CCAM.pdf

2: “What Are the Risk Factors for Cervical Cancer?” Centers for Disease Control. https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/cervical/basic_info/risk_factors.htm

3: “What Are the Key Statistics About Cervical Cancer?” American Cancer Society. https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cervical-cancer/about/key-statistics.html

 

This blog is for agent use only – not for public distribution.

Health Coverage in 2018: Change Is Constant

Change is the only constant in healthcare coverage. Adjustments to cost, convenience, quality, access, and legislation unfailingly impact consumers and the decisions they make for their own healthcare as well as healthcare for their loved ones. But there’s one important factor that will remain unchanged: your clients’ need to have access to affordable, convenient, and quality coverage despite which legislative reforms are in place.

As a third-party billing administrator and a technology resource, Health Insurance Innovations is on a mission to provide access to coverage that fits your clients’ needs, including short-term medical policies. We partner with top rated carriers that offer value-rich health coverage solutions as we modernize the insurance landscape. Our simplified application process and cloud-based digital platform enables licensed agents to enroll consumers in coverage through our carrier partners that tackles evolving healthcare and budget realities.

That coverage includes:

  • Short-term medical
  • Health benefit insurance
  • Accident, cancer and critical illness
  • Prescription
  • Dental
  • Vision
  • Life
  • AD&D
  • Health and wellness programs
  • Lifestyle discounts

Short-term medical coverage and health benefit insurance plans are two options that are quite popular with clients as well as agents and often fit a variety of needs.

Expand your portfolio today by offering these coverage solutions than can provide features such as:

  • Open network of physicians, specialists, and hospitals (*Note: clients can still exceed eligible benefits) 
  • Access to urgent care centers
  • Flexibility in length of coverage and in cost (coverage duration varies by state, may not be renewable)
  • Variety of deductible and coinsurance options
  • Low copay options for in-network benefits
  • Paid benefits similar to traditional major medical plans
  • Next day coverage
  • Little to no waiting periods
  • Deductibles as low as $250
  • Relatively inexpensive premiums, but may result in lower and more restricted benefits
  • Guaranteed acceptance for some products, if eligibility is met and available in state
  • Unlimited low-cost doctor and specialist copays

Please note that it’s important for you and your clients to understand these products do not replace major medical insurance and they do not count as minimum essential coverage required by the Affordable Care Act.

These products are not intended to serve as sole medical coverage. Limitations, restrictions, and exclusions may apply.

In our role, we serve members by providing:

  • Access to personalized insurance information through our secure platform
  • Printed and digital insurance cards on behalf of their carriers
  • Billing support and assistance
  • Digital updates on behalf of their insurance carriers on how to take full advantage of their coverage

Learn more about how you can meet your clients’ health, budget, and lifestyle needs by with a variety of coverage options 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.

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

Help Your Clients Make Safe Toys and Gifts Part of Their Holidays

Help Your Clients Make Safe Toys and Gifts Part of Their Holidays

The holiday season shopping season is upon us as we prepare to celebrate, share laughs and good times with loved ones, and exchange gifts. Prevent Blindness America, a non-profit group dedicated to advocating for eye care and healthy vision, has declared December as Safe Toys and Gifts Awareness Month to help adults make the best decisions on how to keep this holiday season joyful for everyone.

Consider these statistics:
  • Hospital emergency rooms treated an estimated 265,000 toy-related injuries in 2012 throughout the United States1.
  • 72% were people less than 15 years of age1.
  • Close to 90,000 were people less than 5 years of age1.
  • Each year, thousands of children aged 14 and younger suffer from eye injuries and even blindness from toys2.

Many of your clients may be understandably excited to indulge their own children as well as children in their families, but they may not consider important safety concerns or the age range for toys they purchase.

Encourage your clients to follow the guidelines below when choosing toys and gifts2:
  • Read all warnings and instructions on the box.
  • Consider if the toy is appropriate for the child’s ability and age.
  • Avoid purchasing toys with sharp or rigid points, spikes, rods, or dangerous edges.
  • Check the lenses and frames of children’s sunglasses; many can break and cause injuries.
  • Buy toys that will withstand impact and not break into dangerous shards.
  • Look for the letters “ASTM.” This designation means the product meets the national safety standards set by ASTM International.
  • Avoid toys that shoot or include parts that fly off.
  • Inspect toys for safe, sturdy construction.
  • Fix or throw away broken toys.
  • Keep young children away from toys meant for older children.
  • Make sure children store toys properly after play to avoid risks or falls.
  • Supervise children’s craft projects (scissors and glue can be extremely dangerous to a child’s eyesight).
  • Have children wear the right eye protection for sports (face shields, helmets, eyeguards).

Your members deserve coverage options that provide convenient and affordable access to healthcare all year long, especially in case of an emergency. If a loved one becomes injured this holiday season, your clients may end up relying on their health insurance coverage.

Short-term medical coverage and limited medical coverage can provide options that include valuable features such as:
  • Open network of physicians, specialists, and hospitals
  • Access to urgent care centers
  • Flexibility in length of coverage and in cost (coverage duration varies by state, may not be renewable)
  • Variety of deductible and coinsurance options
  • Low copay options for in-network benefits
  • Paid benefits similar to traditional major medical plans
  • Next day coverage
  • Little to no waiting periods
  • Deductibles as low as $250
  • Relatively inexpensive premiums, but may result in lower and more restricted benefits
  • Guaranteed acceptance for some products, if eligibility is met and available in state
  • Unlimited low-cost doctor and specialist copays

Short-term medical coverage or limited medical coverage may be the best fit for some of your clients. However, it’s important for you and your clients to understand these products do not replace major medical insurance, and they do not count as minimum essential coverage required by the Affordable Care Act. These products are not intended to serve as sole medical coverage. Limitations, restrictions, and exclusions may apply.

Learn more about the features above as well as how they can help clients with a variety of health concerns, lifestyle needs, and budget needs by:

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

Sources:

1: “Safe Toys and Gifts Awareness Month.” Prevent Blindness America. https://www.preventblindness.org/safe-toys-and-gifts-awareness-month

2: “Safe Toy Checklist.” Prevent Blindness America. https://www.preventblindness.org/safe-toy-checklist

 

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