Hello everyone, welcome to today’s post, where we will discuss all you need to know about Medical insurance agents and how you can become a medical health insurance agent.
At the end of reading our article, you’ll have gained the crucial knowledge required to understand how to become a Medical Insurance agent, as well as the career prospects, challenges, and many benefits it offers.
Here we covered:
Without any further delay, let’s dive right in!
What is Health Insurance?
A simple definition for health insurance is a type of insurance that pays for medical expenses incurred as a consequence of a medical condition.
These charges could be related to the cost of drugs, the cost of physician consultations, or the cost of hospitalization.
To get more help on health, you can visit healthcare.gov.
What is a Health Insurance Agent?
Becoming a licensed health insurance agent or broker can be a wonderful feat.
However, the first step in getting licensed can be an overwhelming action especially if you are new to the entire medical insurance line.
It is no secret that health insurance is a precautionary measure that every living being undertakes to protect their future.
If one becomes ill or injured unexpectedly, health insurance is expected to be there to assist them in covering costs that you are unlikely to be able to afford on your own.
The outlay of health care can be prohibitively pricey and most times very confusing thus needing a licensed insurance agent.
This invariably means that as a health insurance agent you are doing a very important job for humanity.
So you should learn the best types of health insurance that apply to your client at all times.
An agent is a licensed salesman who works on behalf of one or more health insurance firms, creatively presenting their products and services to potential customers on a commission basis.
An agent cannot be legally recognized as a licensed insurance agent without the required license from their respective states.
Such agents are also expected to have complete continuing education requirements in order to maintain their licenses.
In the business world, health insurance agents know how to sell health insurance.
When you work for an insurance company, you help them meet sales goals.
As a health insurance agent, you need to know how to sell insurance to people.
You are also expected to know what the company you represent sells and how to persuasively present them to your potential clients.
You need to figure out what kind of insurance products your customers need and determine which ones are best for them.
In addition, you should talk about the features of each scheme and answer any customer questions.
It’s also essential to plan and give detailed reports to the management about how your actions have changed.
Sometimes, you may have to come up with and use marketing strategies to compete with other insurance companies.
Types of Agents
There are two different kinds of agents.
The ability to partner with and sell policies for a variety of insurance firms is available to independent agents.
The agent can select the precise insurance that they want to market from a large number of different service providers.
The policies sold by this sort of agent are exclusively available through a single insurance firm.
What You Need to Become a Medical Insurance Agent
For a health insurance job, you need to have a bachelor’s degree in business, insurance, or economics to become employable.
There are some jobs where a master’s degree is mandatory.
Besides the certifications, you also need to demonstrate a great level of confidence and have good evaluating and communication skills.
If you want to become a health insurance agent, one of the first things you should consider is the stage of education you may need.
It is interesting to note that there is over fifty percent of health insurance agents with a bachelor’s degree.
Surprisingly only about six percent of health insurance agents have master’s degrees in the field.
It doesn’t matter that most health insurance agents have a college degree.
In not very many cases you can become an agent with just GED or a high school diploma.
In fact, you might be able to become a health insurance agent if you have worked in other jobs prior to landing an insurance job.
Many health insurance agents claimed to have worked as customer service representatives before getting an insurance job.
On the other hand, many health insurance agents have worked in jobs like cashier or sales associate in the past.
How to Become an Insurance Agent
Stage 1: Pursue an Associate’s or a Bachelor’s Degree (If you so desire)
Having a college degree can assist experienced agents in transition into risk management jobs, such as being employed as actuaries, or into other job openings that demand postsecondary education, such as management positions.
Apart from that, a background in finance and business can be a massive add-on for real estate brokers.
Stage 2: Decide on a specialization
Agents market a wide range of insurance products, including property insurance, casualty insurance, personal lines of insurance, and disability insurance.
They are also known as insurance brokers.
“Lines of control or authority” are what the business refers to as a group of people who have authority over one another.
Naturally, agents are mandated to be licensed in the state in which they work for their specific line of control.
Understanding what sort of insurance you would love to offer your clients is a critical step in determining your professional route.
Stage 3: Completion of all Pre-licensing Obligations
State licensing requirements differ from one another, nonetheless, they are required steps in the process of becoming a licensed insurance agent or licensed insurance broker in the United States.
Candidates seeking casualty insurance licenses in California, for example, are required to complete 1200 minutes of primary pre-licensing study, as well as 720 minutes of study in the state’s insurance ethics and code of ethics.
Students should consult with their state’s insurance department to find out what they need to do in order to become licensed.
Stage 4: Passing a Licensure Exam
In order to sell insurance, all brokers and agents are mandated to pass a licensing exam.
A list having specific licensing criteria for every state was created by the National Insurance Producer Registry.
The list includes an associated cost and other vital information on the licensing procedure.
Stage 5: Submit an Application to insurance Companies
Employers of insurance agents, ranging from local brokerages to large provincial offices of well-unrestricted insurance companies, will consider agents who have completed all of the prerequisites and gained licensure.
What is a Health Insurance Agent’s Salary?
Wages for insurance brokers are often related to commissions, which can result in a vast disparity between salaries and commissions.
Wages also differ significantly depending on the talents, specializations, and experience of an agent.
Approximately $49,000 was the median annual salary for insurance sales agents in 2017, as printed by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
In contrast, the top ten percentile of agents made over $124,000 in one year, while the lower part of the other ten percentile earned slightly more than $26,000 yearly.
According to Payscale.com, the median annual salary for non-experienced agents is a little more than $32,500, while the median yearly salary for agents that are more experienced is roughly $41,000.
Late-career agents and professionals with abilities in account sales, management, and client relations have the ability to earn significantly more money than their predecessors.
For a simpler calculation, an agent makes over $30 for every hour of work.
This invariably means that for an entire year, you can make an average of $63,000.
There is more to this incredible offer than meets the eye.
Within the next ten years from 2018, the number of agent jobs is predicted to grow by a tremendous ten percent or more and also create over forty-eight thousand extra jobs in the United States alone.
With this amazing job chart, there’s no doubt that as a medical insurance agent you will not be out of a job anytime soon.
A significant role for insurance agents is still played in the sector, although many customers in today’s digitally connected world conduct online investigations and purchases individually.
This step has resulted in a reduction of the market for new insurance agents.
Despite this, internet consumers often have regular contact with dealers to adequately comprehend their policies, file claims, conduct other ordinary business activities, and make changes.
Most job opportunities are predicted to be best for real estate agents who are college graduates and for agents who possess excellent customer service, sales, and communication abilities.
However, this is in addition to bilingual representatives who can help an even broader customer base.
Identifying an Insurance Agent Training Program
According to the above, insurance agents are not necessary to complete standard degree programs to function in the insurance sector.
To obtain their license, individuals must first take pre-licensure activities to establish fundamental competence in the insurance products that will be sold to their consumers.
This can be accomplished through a variety of service providers, or agents found online can visit provincial training facilities that have been certified by their state’s insurance division.
When conducting research on pre-licensure programs, the cost, length of the program, and the delivery method are all important considerations.
It’s essential to recall that every insurance policy — whether it’s for casualty insurance, life insurance, or property insurance– necessitates certification.
Actually, there is no universal qualification that enables agents to market any insurance product available.
A prospective agent should be aware of the sort of product with which they will be working and the area in which they will be working before completing a pre-licensure internship.
This will ensure that they fulfill the licensing criteria in their residing state.
To potentially improve their employment options, agents who choose to enlist or continue their education in an associate or bachelor’s degree program can utilize the search engine.
Associations and Groups of insurance Agencies
Participation in an insurance agency or agent organizations and industry marketing groups can be beneficial to insurance brokers in various ways.
These organizations cater to insurance needs, provide insurance options, and insurance coverage for professional maturation.
In addition, they also assist agents in keeping up to date with substantial industry events and news and serving as a vital mouthpiece of advocacy in regulatory and legislative concerns.
These events can also lead to substantial networking opportunities, a valuable business growth tool for insurance brokers and agents.
After all, developing relationships has for a long time been a fundamental element of the insurance sector.
One or more of the following organizations may be of interest to insurance agents, and agents might consider joining or attending their national conferences:
AIA (American Insurance Association)
AIA is a trade organization that represents the interests of insurance companies.
Insurance agents who function in casualty and property insurance are represented by the major trade association in the industry.
Insurance tax, claims, law, and accounting knowledge are open to agents through the Association’s public policy advocacy and an exhaustive online resource library.
ACLI (American Council of Life Insurers)
An industry trade organization with over 279 member businesses.
ACLI writes over 92 percent of the entire life insurance policies documented in the United States.
Provides lobbying, industry standards guidelines, a plethora of networking opportunities, and fact-based research through various occasions held all through the year.
Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America
More than 240,000 business owners and employees from all insurance industry sectors have joined together to form a national alliance.
At events and conferences, the organization provides internet resources, legal advocacy, education, professional development, and networking opportunities.
CIAB (Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers)
This is an organization that represents insurance agents and brokers.
The trade association is situated in Washington, D.C.
The association was established in 1913 and portrays the nation’s top employee and commercial benefits brokerages.
Leadership seminars, academies, professional development prospects, and working groups are available through this organization.
Triple-I (Insurance Information Institute)
This organization serves a diverse group of associates, including insurance experts, regulatory organizations, the media, students, and higher education institutions.
Triple-I is a non-profit organization that provides information, resources, and analysis to its members.
WIFS (Women in Insurance and Financial Services)
Women employed in the financial and insurance services industries focus on the world’s largest trade group.
Members receive perks such as entry to monthly webinars on professional development and business mentorship.
Also, they have opportunities for peer networking, and to the WIFS annual national conference registration, among other things.
IRMI (Risk and Insurance Management Society)
This is a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing risk and insurance management.
The organization was established in 1950 to stand in for agents who operate in the risk management industry.
Professional certification, continuing education, IRMI conferences, and online reference content that are over tens of thousand pages are all available through this website.
NAPIA (National Association of Professional Insurance Agents)
This trade organization, established in 1931, has agent associates in each of the 50 states.
All available are personal education opportunities, a diverse selection of specific industry insurance policies, trading materials, and savings with a wide range of products and service suppliers.
AAA (American Agents Alliance)
In 1962, this organization that is solely driven by members was established in Southern California to address the interests of independent agents and brokers harbored in the real estate sector.
Among the many benefits of membership include a ticket to government advocacy, industry insurance, continuous education, networking possibilities at regional meetings, and the annual AAA convention.
Health Insurance Broker vs. Agent
It is no secret that using a broker or agent saves time and money, whether it is for individual coverage or a company owner looking for the best healthcare solution for their employees.
Nonetheless, sometimes it may become so challenging to differentiate the difference between an insurance broker and an agent.
You end up more confused about the path you need to take as a medical insurance representative.
Brokers make getting health insurance easier by simplifying the process and making it easier to obtain health coverage that meets clients’ needs.
What Exactly Is a Broker?
A Medicare insurance broker is similar to an independent agent in many ways.
Brokers sell policies from numerous insurance firms.
What Is the Contrast Between Agents and Brokers?
Although the phrases agent and broker are sometimes used interchangeably, there are some significant differences between the two.
An insurance specialist who has received specialized training can assist you in enrolling in a health insurance plan.
While agents may work for a single health insurance company, brokers work for several insurance firms.
Agents and brokers who wish to sell Marketplace health plans must be licensed in their respective states and have signed agreements with the Marketplace.
The majority of states mandate that brokers behave in the best interests of their clients.
Agents and brokers are frequently compensated by insurance firms to sell their policies (known as “commissions”).
Some may refuse to sell plans for companies that they do not represent in any way.
As an agent or broker, you can help your clients become eligible for a premium tax credit as well as other benefits.
However, an agent or broker is expected to enroll clients in health insurance through the Health Insurance Marketplace if they are qualified to benefit from the savings.
Health Insurance Companies
Employers make big decisions all the time when it comes to health insurance, but it can be difficult to know where to begin, especially for small firms without a dedicated HR department.
Setting up a formal health benefit, on the other hand, is well worth the time and work.
Offering an employer-sponsored health insurance plan has a number of benefits, including helping to keep and attract employees, making one’s company stand out, and creating a happy and healthy staff.
For companies needing to offer insurance health coverages for their employees, there’s a period recognized as an open enrollment period.
During “open enrollment,” workers have the option of changing their medical coverage once a year.
Open enrollment for small businesses and employers normally occurs a month before the policy’s renewal date and lasts one or two weeks.
As an insurance agent, it is your duty to bring the importance and need of having the employees in an establishment appropriately insured to the knowledge of the governing bodies.
You could start a health insurance company of your own on a low scale or work with some reputable giants in the field.
Knowing which health insurance companies are reputable the products and services they offer and their salary scale is a smart place to start.
The top health insurance firms in the United States are listed below.
This list is an immaculate area to begin your research in order to get excellent health benefits and a job. They are:
- Kaiser Foundation
- United Health
- Centene Corporation
- Anthem Inc
- Health Care Service Corporation (HCSC)
- Independence Health Group
- Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee
- Molina Healthcare
- California Physicians Service
- Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina
- Guidewell Mutual Holding
- Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan
- Highmark Group
- Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey
- Blue Cross of California
- UPMC Health System
- Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts
- Carefirst Inc.
- Health Net of California
- Local Initiative Health Authority
As a medical insurance agent, you need to equip yourself with the right information on the United States’ most accepted health insurance practice.
A health insurance program offered by the United States for adults over the age of 65 and for people below sixty-five years of age who are receiving Social Security disability benefits is termed Medicare.
This scheme assists with the cost of health care, but it does not cover all medical bills or the costs of most long-term care.
Medicare Health Plans
Medicare is carefully divided into four segments – Part A, Part B, Part C, and Part D.
Part A is the most basic of the four parts.
This plan covers hospital and inpatient care.
Outpatient/medical coverage is furnished through Part B.
Part C of Medicare provides an alternative method of receiving your Medicare supplement and payments.
Prescription drug coverage is provided by Part D.
In general, the various components of Medicare assist in the coverage of certain services such as supplemental insurance.
The majority of Medicare beneficiaries elect to receive their Part A and B benefits through Original Medicare, which is a traditional fee-for-service program administered directly by the federal government on their behalf.
It is referred to as Traditional Medicare or Fee-for-Service Medicare (FFS Medicare) in some circles.
Original Medicare is a government-sponsored healthcare program that reimburses you directly for the healthcare services you receive.
Knowledge of how this scheme operates will help you represent your clients adequately.
With a medicare membership, your client can see any doctor and any hospital that accepts Medicare (and the vast majority do) from anywhere in the United States.
How Can a Medicare Agent or Broker Assist With Medicare Options?
A Medicare agent or broker can assist in narrowing down selections and selecting the most appropriate one.
They learn about their client’s health objectives as well as their financial situation in order to accomplish this.
They give solutions that allow one to achieve objectives while staying within their budget.
They can assist with enrollment into the health coverage and plan of choice.
If the plan a client is currently enrolled in changes coverage or does not fit their needs, a quick look at the contact information of an agent or broker can help intensely.
Medicaid is a state and federal program in the United States that furnishes financial assistance with healthcare expenditures for some persons with limited resources and income.
Eligibility for Medicaid Benefits
Medicaid recipients are required to be legal residents of the state in which they are receiving Medicaid benefits in most cases.
To be eligible to participate, they must be either citizens of the United States or certain qualifying non-citizens, such as lawful permanent residents, who meet certain requirements.
In addition, some qualifying categories are restricted based on their age, their pregnant status, or their parental status.
Affordable Care Act (ACA)
Obamacare, also understood as the Affordable Care Act is a United States statute from the federal government signed into law by the former United States president, Barack Obama.
This law was signed into law, became effective from March 23, 2010, and passed by the 111th United States Congress to make affordable health insurance open to more people.
Unlike what may have been said in the past by individuals that delved into brokerage in the insurance niche without substantial research, you need a good level of self-confidence, excellent communication skills, and most importantly, a license to be a medical insurance agent.
First, you need a GED certificate or a high school diploma.
A bachelor’s degree can boost your work prospects, although it is not always essential.
Next, you need to get your certification.
It has been established that health insurance agents have their own licensure requirements separate from licensing for property or casualty insurance brokers.