Archive for July, 2008

If you are a licensed agent and would like to review the 2009 plan designs, please e-mail April Ford.

Keep in mind that these are NOT to be shared with any Medicare Beneficiary before October 1st, 2008 and that these are filed plans and NOT APPROVED.


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Insurance Agents who wish to sell Coventry Health Care Medicare Advantage products will be able to Certify online beginning the week of August 18th, 2009

By completing the Contracting requirements and by completing the online training, agents will be able to sell for the remainder of 2008 and all of 2009.

Existing agents who have certified for 2008 will need to RECERTIFY in order to sell 2009 products.

The Coventry Certification will be available for the following products (there will be testing for each of the 4 product categories below, plus General CMS Compliance rules):

  • Stand Alone Part D
  • Coventry Freedom Private Fee for Service
  • Coventry Savings Medicare Medical Savings Account (MSA)
  • Coventry’s Local Health Plans (HMO and PPO plans)
    • Health America (Pennsylvania and Ohio-New for 2009)
    • Coventry of Georgia
    • Coventry of Iowa (Iowa and South Dakota)
    • Coventry of Kansas (Kansas and Kansas City, Missouri)
    • GHP  (St. Louis, Missouri)
    • Altius (Utah and Wyoming)
    • Carelink (West Virginia)

If you would like to be advised of the Certification procedure for 2009, please e-mail our Contact Center Manager, Chuck Ducharm.

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Pick a date and mark your calendar!
Webcast Dates:
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Time:  All Dates – 3 PM CST
Webcast URL:  http://uhc-enterprise.webex.com
Email Craig for Meeting ID, Password and Phone number.

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If you are an insurance agent in the Medicare Advantage market, you need to align yourself with an IMO who understands that Medicare Advantage Sales Leads will be KING in 2009.

I will address each point in detail in future posts, but here is a brief overview:

  1. Telemarketing will be banned.  You will no longer be able to “dial for dollars” in the Medicare Advantage market in 2009.
  2. Acquisition Costs will Escalate.  Without the ability to telemarketing, ad dollars will move to TV, Radio, Newspaper, Direct Mail and Internet leads, escalating the cost of these leads.
  3. Reporting is key.  Since the value of each lead will be much higher, Insurance companies will want to know, almost instantly, what’s going on with the leads they generate for brokers.
  4. Commissions will be levelized.  This will likely happen in 2009.  Level commissions will mean that you will not see wide differences in commissions that companies pay.  Companies will, however, be able to differentiate themselves with sales leads for agents.
  5. Time is short.  With a 6 week window during the Annual Enrollment Period, an insurance company can’t wait for 2-3 weeks to hear back on sales results.  Lead turn times will be measured in hours or days, not weeks.

Ritter Insurance Marketing understands this and we’ve already put an Online Lead portal to allow us to INSTANTLY distribute leads.  When our agents update the disposition of sales leads, we know it INSTANTLY.

To view our online lead portal, simply register at our AGENT GATEWAY.  You can record lead information, track statuses, update dispositions, next step dates, appointment dates, sales dates, product sold, company sold, etc.  This is a free service to you and this is why many Insurance Companies are looking to Ritter Insurance Marketing to handle the distribution of their Sales Leads to brokers who are licensed with Ritter Insurance Marketing!

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See Complete Press Release

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The House and Senate last week voted to override the President’s veto of the Medicare bill, which means that the House Medicare bill now will become law. However, it will take some time for the two main components of the law to have an impact: 1) The unfavorable rating change doesn’t take effect till 2010; and 2) The requirement for insurers to have a contract with a doctor doesn’t take effect till 2011. As for other items in the bill, the new marketing rules (born out of the Finance Committee meeting with health plan CEOs, including Aetna’s Ron Williams) start in 2009, but some market rules will take effect in late 2008. The prompt payment to pharmacists requirement takes effect in 2010, and the financial incentives to doctors who e-prescribe start in 2009, while the requirement to e-prescribe starts in 2012. The new law will eventually have an effect on the beneficiaries served by Aetna in particular parts of the country, but Aetna is well-positioned and prepared to minimize the impact and adjust operations to the new law.

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This came from an Aetna:

Testimony was mixed. Highmark and IBC claimed that consolidation is necessary to remain competitive with large national insurers with access to capitalization. A number of policyholders and community groups spoke in favor of the merger. Speaking against the consolidation were a number of disparate groups. Providers generally opposed it, including an AMA lawyer who expects it to have a negative impact on competition. Some community groups opposed the consolidation, mainly because of concerns with inadequate social mission funding. Health insurers, including Aetna, opposed it or urged that any approval come with certain conditions. The Department will continue to accept public comments until the end of August, with a possible hearing taking place in September by the legislature’s Insurance Committees. While resolution by year-end is possible, the enormity of the proposal and the need for legislative involvement may tie it up until next Spring.

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Effective with the 6/29/08 commission runs, Coventry has changed their commission chargeback procedure for disenrollments during the first year.

For details, log into Agent Gateway, click on FAQ and Select “Coventry”. . .Look for the question:  How does Coventry handle charge backs for the 2008 Advantra Freedom Plans?

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This is from American Progressive and Pyramid, note that this is Medicare Training and Certification and that Product training will follow. . .  -Craig

We are excited to announce that we have expanded our Medicare product lines for 2009. 

I would like to personally invite you to attend one of our FREE MEDICARE PRODUCT and CERTIFICATION EVENTS and learn about what sets us apart from the competition.

 Competitive Commissions PAID DAILY

  • Voted #1 in CMS survey for Prescription Drug Plan customer service by Medicare beneficiaries
  • Top Quality Agent Support (more…)

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Aetna is coming to the Pittsburgh market in 2009.  As a part of their new product introduction, they are looking to partner with some experienced Medicare Advantage agents to work their leads.

There will be no cost to the leads and there is no commission reduction (GA commissions will be paid on all lead sales).

The leads will be generated using TV ads, Full page Newspaper Ads, Newspaper Inserts, Direct Mail and Internet Pay-per-Click. 

Aetna is estimating that they will generate over 5,000 leads and ALL will be assigned to brokers.

If you would like to learn more about this opportunity, please register for our Webex Presentation hosted by Craig Ritter and Amy Ike of Aetna.

The Webex will be on Wednesday, July 30th at 11am.  Please plan to attend about 10 minutes early.

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