Every day, thousands of seniors across the country turn 65 years old and age into Medicare.
According to a recent report by the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF), of this ever-growing group of citizens, more than 22 million (34 percent) have opted to sign up for Medicare Advantage plans—which are alternatives to traditional Medicare coverage offered through private insurers.
For everyone else, there’s regular Medicare.
According to a separate study by the KFF, though, eight in 10 Medicare beneficiaries had some kind of supplemental insurance in 2016: 30 percent had coverage through their employer, 29 percent had Medigap coverage, and 22 percent had Medicaid.
At the same time, 6.1 million beneficiaries had no supplemental coverage. In the event that such individuals were to experience a serious health-related issue, they could be overwhelmed by hefty healthcare bills.
As a health insurance agent, your job is to match clients with coverage options that make the most sense for their specific situations and help them lead healthy lives. This puts you in the unique position of offering Medicare recipients Medigap coverage—also known as Medicare supplements.
With the right approach, you can target both clients who already have supplemental insurance and those who have only Medicare but might not know what Medicare supplements are.
What Are Medicare Supplements?
According to Medicare.gov, Medicare supplements are additional insurance policies that cover things that Medicare doesn’t, such as copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles. These supps are sold by private insurers and work in tandem with traditional Medicare coverage to deliver a more robust insurance policy.
Medigap coverage, which covers only one person—is available only to clients who have Medicare Part A and Part B. Once an individual has Medicare supplemental insurance, it is most often a “set it and forget it” situation, once beneficiaries are enrolled, policies will auto-renew—so long as they pay their premiums on time.
Generally speaking, when a client has Medicare supplemental coverage, they will go to the doctor, Medicare will pay its share of the bill, and then the Medigap policy kicks in.
What Are the Best States to Sell Medicare Supplements In?
If you’re wondering what the best states to sell Medicare supplements in are, you’ve come to the right place. Keep in mind, though, that you need to be licensed in each state in order to sell insurance there.
According to the American Association for Medicare Supplement Insurance, more than 14.1 million Americans had Medigap coverage in 2018. More specifically, here are the top 20 states for Medigap coverage in terms of number of enrollments in 2017 (Source: NAIC, 2017/2018 Medicare Supplement Experience Reports):
- Florida: 874,124 members
- Texas: 818,599 members
- Illinois: 767,081 members
- Pennsylvania: 683,367 members
- Ohio: 568,792 members
- California: 560,442 members
- North Carolina: 486,013 members
- New York: 473,317 members
- New Jersey: 464,599 members
- Michigan: 420,086 members
- Virginia: 412,151 members
- Indiana: 378,455 members
- Georgia: 359,456 members
- Missouri: 320,933 members
- Massachusetts: 322,856 members
- Arizona: 306,724 members
- Iowa: 299,233 members
- Tennessee: 296,560 members
- Wisconsin: 295,227 members
- Washington: 288,708 members
As you can see, that’s a lot of beneficiaries. As the baby boomer generation continues aging into Medicare, it’s likely that these numbers will all increase in the coming years. Still, because Medigap coverage is so important for seniors—especially those who don’t have deep pockets—selling Medicare supplements in any state is a vital service for public health.
Tips for Selling Medicare Supplement Insurance
The costs of Medigap coverage vary on a state-by-state basis. For example, the average Texan can expect to fork over $1,860 in premiums each year for coverage, whereas the average Oregonian will pay $1,468. That might make a difference when it comes to your commissions, but it doesn’t matter much when it comes to securing your clients’ health.
As you begin your campaign to sell more Medigap plans, here are some tips to keep in mind.
1. Position yourself as a trusted adviser
Today’s most successful insurance agents are trusted advisers who serve as strategic consultants for the clients they work with. They go out of their way to make sure their clients know what products are available to them, and they are always ready to pick up the phone to respond to any requests that come in.
2. Anticipate clients’ needs
The best agents are also able to anticipate clients’ needs. For example, if you know that one of your clients has a number of employees who are about to age into Medicare, you may want to use that information as a launchpad for a discussion about Medigap coverage—something that would, no doubt, be of interest to at least some of those workers.
3. Use technology that makes it easy for you
Selling several different kinds of insurance products is no easy feat, particularly when you’re working in multiple states. There’s no sense, however, in making the process any harder than it needs to be. By investing in modern quote and enrollment tools, you get access to a robust network of more than 300 carriers and 43,000 different plans—all from one central platform.
Take Your Agency to the Next Level by Selling More Medicare Supplements
Whether you’re trying to pump up your Medigap coverage sales or you want to add Medicare supplements to your portfolio of products, there’s no better time to get started than now.
Sign up for a free trial of Quotit’s quote and enrollment tool today to see how the powerful technology can help you deliver more value to your clients in less time and make Medicare supplements easy.