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Showing posts from 2015

Open Enrollment Healthcare Washington State: Week 3

1. Well, I found a first trap because of excessive exchange funding. This effects all clients that have had apple health. Clients are now able to get extensions automatically on their apple health up to a year at a time. I have a family that is now at 200%+ of the poverty level that was granted this extension. Their healthcare is paid by tax dollars and as their broker I receive zero commission. Would you like to make $60,000+ a year and have medicaid for the entire family? Previous to the ACA brokers were paid $100 per enrollment with an average of 10% of people a year coming off medicaid during any given year. 2. If you have been following this was an excerpt from a Health Care Authority recent audit sent Oct 23rd. HCA regularly conducts audits of Washington Apple Health eligibility. Recent audits by HCA found numerous cases of inaccurate income reported on Washington Apple Health (Medicaid) applications in Healthplanfinder. Clients found to have discrepancies in their reporte

Suzie Health Solutions does good.

The Director for the Wenatchee Senior Center dopped in and gave Suzie McColm her plaque. It was the first one that she achieved. She has been helping for years people fill their prescriptions at the local pharmacies struggle. The struggle could have been from not having insurance to having a bad plan. When she had enough, she rolled up her sleeves, got her insurance license and started helping with the affordable care act. After her first year helping, she wanted to help more with Seniors so Medicare was a natural for her. She still helps as a pharmacy tech these days but her passion is helping people on the front in with insurance. Stop in and say hi to a proud member of our team .

Health Insurance Washington 2016

The first week of open enrollment has been exciting. We have had some new customers and some old. When we first started and I looked at the system, I let everyone know; the first rule is always use a broker. This year is truer than ever before. Here are the challenges: 1. There are 143 plans for individuals. 30 plans for Small business and 8 dental for kid s. These are plans that myself and many brokers have been training for months. This is a monstrous variety to choose from. 2. There are some plans that are only available on the exchange that are great even if you don’t have subsidy. The first year, we only had one company and now we have three that are going this route. 3. There are still some errors with the system. I was able to catch one early that no tax subsidy was being applied. It was $30 a month that the gentleman could use for other expenses. 4. I am still seeing businesses offering group plans that are either unaffordable or more expensive than some of the plans on

Open Enrolllment for Healthcare 2016

We believe that healthcare should be affordable and usable. There are 136+ plans on the Washington Health Benefits Exchange and it can be a little confusing to who covers what, for how much. For 2014 we helped so many people in Eastern Washington that Matt McColm was named a Top Producer by the Washington Health Benefits Exchange . Open Enrollment is just around the corner. It doesn’t matter if you are a new or a repeat customer as we take the time to explain how plans work so that our clients can make informed decisions. This is a tremendous time for Health Insurance because it allows customers to shop and select new plans that start in 2016. Some important things to consider: 1. Open Enrollment runs from November 1st to Jan 31st. This is when Health Insurance is the most Flexible. 2. There are Special Enrollments outside for a variety of reasons including moving careers to one that does not provide Health Insurance. 3. Households of 2 qualify for reduced prices for Health Insur

No Health Insurance Penalty

Who likes paying something for nothing? When the ACA went into effect almost three years ago, the maximum a household would pay was $285. This is on top of any fees or expenses if you got sick or injured. Most people wouldn’t ever see the penalty because it was taken when they filed their taxes. We started helping people that year because we saw where the penalty was going to lead. The average client under 30 paid less than $150 a month for insurance or nothing at all if they qualified for Washington Apple Health. For 2016 the tax penalty will be up to $2085 per household. This is significantly more than more people enrolling would pay for insurance. 80% enrolled were either free or qualified for a subsidy. There are 136 plans on the exchange which can lead to some confusion, which is why we recommend working with a broker. A broker receives training on how different plans function and are licensed and regulated by the Washington Insurance Commissioner. Ask a broker up front if the

What Health Insurance plan do I pick in Washington State?

2016 is shaping up to be a big year for health insurance in Washington State. We are now looking at: • 180 approved plans on the Washington Health Benefits Exchange . • A 4.2 percent Increase approved by the Office of the Insurance Commissioner. • Regence Blue Shield’s Innova plan is the state’s essential health benefit (EHB) benchmark plan so the tax credits are changing. Our office has been training a few months on the different plans. There are some big differences with new carriers entering the exchange market such as Health Alliance Northwest Plan Inc, Regence BlueShield and United Healthcare of Washington. There have been significant changes in plan structures of Lifewise, Moda and Coordinated Care. We regularly reach out to carriers to find out how they function from customer feedback and with utilizing the products ourselves. Our brokers do the best to distill the information down to a usable format so that our clients can make the best possible choice in carriers. Y

Single Payer

Before I started working with Healthcare, I was a big fan of a single payer system. The more involved and the more understanding led me to a position that I do not believe single payer is possible in the United States. I can say this due to the continuous exploitation of sick people and tax dollars by unethical individuals. Here are some examples: 1. I am a veteran that does not like the VA. I remember the hanging fluorescent tubes from the ‘70s. It has been rocked by countless scandals throughout the years. Whether it is document shredding the applications of Veterans ; to bonuses paid to poorly behaving employees ; to waiting lists for waiting lists . They may do some good treatments however it needs to be overhauled at the least or dismantled at the best. 2. Medicare is another American System that people talk about expanding because of low administrative costs. We see abuses in Fraud and False Billing . It is a team event of ineffective management on the government level and un

2015 Spring Symposium

Washington Association of Health Underwriters held their 2015 Spring Symposium in Spokane. I was able to carve out the time and be able to attend as it was amazing. There were at least 30 vendors organized around the room. We had speakers that had serious content about Healthcare in the State of Washington. The Affordable Care Act and how it is interacting was a major topic. I wish that more of my agency was available to go. I wish a big thanks to Premera , Asuris and the other Sponsors of this event. Events are not cheap. I got signed in early and ran around talking with every one that I could to see who was doing what with Insurance. There were familiar faces such as Group Health, Connext , Moda, etc. I also encountered new Venders, ones that were able to provide multiple group quotes, private health exchanges or inexpensive plans for large groups that are 100% ACA compliant. This was an excellent way to start collecting information and put together some dynamic solutions for
Health Insurance doesn’t have to be intimidating. I got involved because I saw for the first time; it could be affordable to normal people. That they didn’t have to go bankrupt. A lot has changed during the last couple of years to make it better for people. There is a simple principal that I started early with to help people who do not want to dedicate their lives to get better health insurance. I got involved in 2012 when a client walked into my office in Wenatchee and asked me, ‘how does Obamacare affect me?’ If you do nothing then you will have a fine and let’s take a look at it next year. When the summer of 2013 came around, we priced it and found that she could get insurance for around $50 a month. For the first time in her life Health Insurance was affordable. I priced more of my friends to discover that it would have a large impact in the Wenatchee Valley. I talked with my primary insurance company and they were not participating. I was left to find companies become affiliat