An interesting dialogue sponsored by AFLAC on how today’s agents and brokers can help their clients navigate healthcare reform offered these pointers:
- Carriers and brokers will be supplying a Summary of Benefits Coverage in 2013. Payroll companies will help with reporting benefit payments to the IRS.
- In 2014 we’ll have to worry about obtaining insurance from either federal or state exchanges. Much remains to be worked out before any advice can be given in this area.
- Agents and brokers will still need to advise their clients on the purchase of Disability, Life, and other insurances and often times on a voluntary basis.
- Employee education will be essential. Work with an agent or broker that can provide employees with this education so they don’t get their information from the TV.
- The healthcare exchanges will be providing “navigation services,” and we’re still not sure exactly what that means.
- Ultimately, employers are going to ask, “What should I do?” and your agent or broker must have the experience and expertise to provide you with insight.
This will be a challenging time as carriers, brokers, employees, employers, and healthcare administrators struggle through the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. The bottom line: Getting your benefits act together with your Health insurer, agent, broker, and employees will provide a significant competitive advantage for your business.