Now that the Supreme Court has ruled the Health Reform Bill as constitutional, it appears to be moving full speed ahead into 2013. State, association, and commercial health exchanges, premium tax on Medicare Health Plans, and dramatically increased access for previously uninsurable individuals across the country are all on the horizon. Oh yeah, and the requirement to carry health insurance, unless you are willing to incur a penalty for continuing to go without.
So what does it all mean to us as insurance sales professionals? Well, after reading several articles and participating in a recent webinar on the topic, I’m convinced that very few answers are currently available. After consulting with Larry, and reflecting on our experiences with a similarly-mandated change to health care requirements and options, known as the Medicare Modernization Act, the private sector will continue to play a massive role, and we may be introduced to new opportunities never before imagined.
Flash back to 2004. Did anyone truly recognize the industry changing, history in the making events we all experienced over the last several years? I recall people saying that post MMA, the need for agents would diminish dramatically, that earning’s potential would plummet, and that the industry would no longer offer the opportunities to private industry that it once had. In a recent conversation with Larry, he provided me with an even bigger history lesson: “Lance, I’ve been hearing from people that the sky is falling all the way back to 1965, when Lyndon Johnson enacted new Medicare legislation, that many believed would wipe out the big carriers serving in the space. Instead, they’ve been amongst the most successful organizations in the business world, capitalizing on opportunity after opportunity, brought about by our government’s attempt to offer new programs that address the needs of Americans.”
This change will be no different. How it also impacts the Medicare space is also an unknown. Maybe we finally get a viable alternative for covering the 63 year old spouse. Maybe the changes bring about a dramatic return to the old seminar model, when 40-50 attendees would show up with the most basic promotional ad. Of course, we will continue to monitor the implementation and execution of this new health reform bill and seek to keep you as current and engaged as we can. Likewise, we’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas on the bill, and its impact on our great industry. You can comment on this blog post below. We look forward to continuing this dialogue with you.