Independent Agents Prove Value

Mar 27, 2008

  1. MedSuppPro
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    Hot off the press (CMS posted) are the 2008 PDP Enrollment numbers as of March 2008.

    And the most interesting numbers point to the Independent Agents success over carrier sold direct plans. For example; direct sold FIRST HEALTH LIFE AND HEALTH INSURANCE COMPANY whom sold a lower premium stronger formulary plan was out sold by it’s sister plan COVENTRY HEALTH AND LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY. The best county for First Health could only muster a third of Coventry’s enrollment numbers.

    Independents (primarily) are the bread and butter of this industry. We are the trusted advisor and not some brochure. It’s why I have 5 appointments on Sunday. To bad United Health (AARP) doesn’t realize our worth! UHC the No brainer Left Behind company!
     
  2. midwestbroker
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    Not that I disagree with this subject, but a lot of the MAPD players are focused on that, MAPD plans.

    Both Humana and Coventry (at least here locally) do not even track PDP sales as they did not care. They were after MA and MAPD sales. If you told your sales manager you sold a PDP they would ask why you did not sell a MAPD.
     
  3. sman
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    Midwest,

    The point in the original post was the value INDEPENDENT agents bring. Therefore, no sales manager to worry about.
     
    sman, Mar 29, 2008
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  4. midwestbroker
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    I was referring to the captive sales force not caring about PDP sales, only MA and MAPD sales.
     
  5. MedSuppPro
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    Whether MA, MAPD, MedSupp or PDP; sales are via a tree legged stool. Captive, in-house, and independent sales.


    When confronted with the pressures to deliver profitable results, all three have to choose their poison. And PDP’s may be a lost leader for all three. I know that I average minimum wage when I add-up my time and expenses with a stand alone PDP.


    Today, it may be that MAPD’s are a great consumer value. Tomorrow, it may be a miscalculation, which will become a self-correcting issue via “re-pricing”.



    Midwestbroker, I feel as passionate about independent sales as you do about captive. I only was comparing the results of yet another carrier who designs an in-house sales product only to fail miserably. There is and has been limited success with in-house sales and yet history does repeat itself.
     
  6. midwestbroker
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    Medsupp -

    I too am and independent agent. I was with Humana for just under 2 years, then took a semi-captive contract job with Coventry for 4 months, and now am full independent.

    In no way am I trying to downplay the story...I just wanted to show some incite on how big MAPD producing carriers view PDP plans.

    What they are missing, is that next year, if the person wants a MAPD plan, and the agent is smart enough to follow up and call them to see if they want a review, then the independent agent has the sale over the captive agent.

    MAPD hold strong in KC. They have for many years (prior to Part D) since most plans are HMO or PPO. In other areas of the country, it may be a whole different story. I only have KC to compare to since I only work the KC market.
     
  7. retread
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    I think the point Midwest Broker has made is that PDP sales are not significant enough to place much credence in the stats regarding the value of the impact of independent sales.

    If you want to build a case for the importance of independents, I would not use PDP sales as a measure.
     
    retread, Mar 31, 2008
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  8. midwestbroker
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    True...but as mentioned, all depends on where you live.

    If you are running leads or making calls in Kansas City metro, you will run into just as many people who have a MAPD that have a Supplement.

    Just to example that...when I was with Coventry, I received no information about their PDP plans. I never even saw a kit for one. All the focus was on MAPD sales.
     
  9. retread
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    The reason you did not see any PDP kits at Coventry of KC is because they do not support them in their direct channel. They farm out all PDPs and PFFSs to FMOs or the home office in Bethesda, MD.

    I am direct w/ Coventry of KC... When I submit my aps, Coventry of KC only accepts MAPDs. PDPs and PFFSs must be submitted elsewhere (either to one's FMO or corporate if you are direct w/ Cvty).
     
    retread, Mar 31, 2008
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  10. sman
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    They may not be significant enough to track, but they should be. The majority of my PDP sales result in another sale. I have taken in nearly $1,000,000 in investments as a result of PDP sales over the last couple of years. Not to mention the many PFFS and Med Supp plans I've sold in combination with PDP's.

    MedSupp's point was that the independent agent adds value. Coventry designed a PDP that was the cheapest one on the market to sell direct to the public without the assistance of agents. They sold much fewer than their other PDP plans.

    So, you guys continue to pass up the PDP's and leave them for someone like me who doesn't mind the loss leader. It usually results in additional dollars. Sometimes it's immediate. Sometimes it's months later. PDP's are something EVERY person on Medicare is concerned about. If you're not talking to them about it, someone else is. If all you've sold them is an MAPD, I may be able to show them where they can have lower cost by combining a PFFS with a separate PDP. That's a big challenge for those of you that are captive. You've got one arrow in your quiver. Those of us that are independent have many arrows in our quiver.
     
    sman, Mar 31, 2008
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