It is your goal as a health insurance broker or agent to close as many deals as you can. To do that, you must maximize the potential of your brokerage or agency, which includes being able to provide Medicare Advantage plans to your clients.
However, the majority of private insurers offering these plans will only collaborate with brokerages and agencies that have successfully finished training programs and certification exams run by a trade group called America's Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), which aims to support the development of a more affordable healthcare system.
Below, we’ll cover all you need to know about AHIP and what you should do to ensure you can provide your customers with one of the insurance products that is expanding at the quickest rate.
What Is the AHIP Certification?
What Is the AHIP?
The American Association of Health Plans and the Health Insurance Association of America merged to establish AHIP in 2003.
AHIP's current priorities are enhancing and safeguarding the national population's financial stability and health. AHIP works to create alliances between the public and private sectors to provide a more beneficial and affordable health insurance experience.
How Does the AHIP Achieve Its Mission?
The AHIP aims to accomplish its goals by:
- Expanding consumer options and promoting increased market competitiveness
- Streamlining healthcare for people, families, and other organizations
- Pursuing beneficial public-private collaborations
- Collaborating with healthcare professionals to improve the results of health insurance
- Enhancing the socioeconomic determinants of health and comprehending the cost of chronic illness
- Fostering innovative clinical practices while maintaining value
- Using technology and data to increase patient satisfaction, quality, and efficiency
What Exactly Is the AHIP Certification?
The AHIP certification serves as proof that an agent or broker has completed extensive, advanced training in Medicare and is knowledgeable about how to sell Medicare without breaking compliance.
What Are the Requirements for Getting AHIP Certified?
The AHIP training must be taken and passed to receive certification, which you can do after registering on the AHIP website.
During the training, you’ll take two main courses about these insurance types:
Health Insurance. This course covers the fundamentals of Medicare eligibility and benefits, as well as the various Medicare Advantage and Part D prescription drug plan options, eligibility requirements, coverage, nondiscrimination training, and marketing and enrollment policies.
Fraud, Waste, and Abuse (FWA). This course will teach you how to recognize FWA, what steps the industry is taking to improve fraud detection, what legal tools are available to combat FWA, the financial and human costs of FWA, general compliance requirements, Medicare Parts C and D FWA requirements, who is most likely to commit FWA, and what to do when reporting an FWA incident.
As a result of completing the two courses above, you will be one step closer to getting your AHIP certification.
The next step is to pass a timed certification exam. AHIP offers various additional courses to help agents and brokers become more effective. This aids in the organization's goal of enhancing the healthcare industry.
Eligibility to become certified in AHIP’s 2024 started on June 21, 2023.
Benefits of Getting Your AHIP Training Certificate
1. You’re Able To Sell Medicare Advantage Plans
Since an AHIP certification enables you to meet carrier compliance and sell Medicare Advantage plans, it allows you to unlock additional revenue streams and reach a wider demographic.
2. You Learn Even More About Your Industry
You will get extensive knowledge about Medicare and Medicare Advantage plans by earning your AHIP certification. This will equip you with a wealth of information you can share with clients and prospects whenever they contact you with inquiries.
You can then work toward establishing yourself as a reliable advisor knowledgeable about health insurance who clients can rely on to assist in choosing the appropriate plan for them.
3. You Avoid Potentially Costly Missteps
When you start selling Medicare Advantage plans, the last thing you want is to discover a lack of compliance. Your company may suffer if you fail to recognize and disclose FWA or break Medicare Advantage marketing rules. You can even lose the ability to offer these insurance products to senior citizens, which is a large client demographic in health insurance.
Becoming AHIP certified helps you avoid these pitfalls and cements yourself as an elite, go-to insurance agent or brokerage.
Tips For Passing Your AHIP Training Exam
Stay Updated With Any Changes
Several seasoned insurance agents frequently forget to prepare for the certification after they completed it the previous year. It should be noted that it is necessary to pass the AHIP certification exam annually, not just once. Every year, it's crucial to review the documents again and search for new or updated information.
Don’t Wait Too Long To Take the Exam
To allow yourself to concentrate on other things, such as your sales strategy, give yourself adequate time to study and take the test well before the next Annual Enrollment Period (AEP). Furthermore, you might be unable to repeat the test before AEP starts if you wait until the last minute.
To be prepared to offer Medicare Advantage plans, begin studying for your next AHIP certification immediately.
Are You Ready To Get Your AHIP Certificate and Prepare for Your Next AEP?
Even though it can be a little expensive upfront, the certification will serve you well in the long run. Brokerages and agencies certified by AHIP not only have access to a larger client base, but they are also in a good position to contribute to the enhancement of the health insurance market as a whole.
Earning your AHIP certification is just one step toward having a highly successful AEP. Learn more ways you can improve your operations for your next AEP!