agilon health Implements Successful Initiative for Engaging Independent Licensed Sales Agents
Surveys indicate that trusted insurance agents are the most important resource when Medicare-eligible patients are making their Medicare coverage decisions. A third of patients in our partner markets surveyed this year said they enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan using a local independent agent. Because of this, Dawn Paduganan, VP of New Market Growth & Implementation for agilon health, developed a comprehensive approach to educating local agents on the benefits of our Medicare Advantage service line in Akron, Austin and Columbus. The sales agent engagement campaign reflects tactics that create deep collaborations with each market’s highest-performing sales agents, while at the same time ensuring that all sales agents serving the community understand the benefits of Senior Care Advantage and the excellence in care provided by each of our partner practices.
The campaign is divided into three phases:
- Research to determine the highest performing sales agents in the market agilon health team members work with health plan partners and other industry stakeholders to identify the highest performing sales agents for Medicare Advantage products in the market. A selection criteria was established to determine the sales agents that are the best fit for growing the Senior Care Advantage program (“Collaborating Brokers”). A significant commitment is requested from Collaborating Brokers, including the execution of legal documents to ensure all data exchange is done in a compliant manner, and that all patient outreach and education is performed using the highest ethical standards and in accordance with the Medicare Marketing Guidelines. In addition, each of our Collaborating Brokers agrees to track attendance at patient educational events and also report back the frequency in which patients complete business reply cards and consents for further contact; ultimately reporting what Medicare coverage options are most popular with our patients.
- Understanding the interests and needs of market sales agents. At the outset of each calendar year, a sales agent survey will identify areas of interest and concern in the community. Initial feedback from agents surveyed in 2019, suggested they want to better understand the services and care offered through Senior Care Advantage programs and requested a list of primary care physicians who are accepting new patients. They also asked for tools allowing them to easily indicate PCP selection on a member’s Medicare Advantage plan enrollment form.
- Special events. Sales agent events will take place throughout the year. In April and May 2019, sales agent education events were hosted in Akron, Austin and Columbus. Over 150 sales agents attended the events, which featured presentations from the local market physician leadership and care management and growth teams. The value proposition for the Senior Care Advantage program came alive through patient stories and a description of services. Additional opportunities to foster sales agent relationships, including educational sessions on Medicare Advantage for PCPs; review of plan benefits just prior to the Annual Enrollment Period; and informal social gatherings for agents and physicians are being scheduled.
“The initial sales agent education programs have resulted in a better understanding of the Senior Care Advantage program and proved the additional value these programs will provide Medicare Advantage patients in Austin, Akron and Columbus,” Paduganan admits. “They also set the stage for continued relationship building between our partner practices and the local broker community. I’m optimistic about the growth we can expect to see from this sales channel as we progress throughout the year and especially during the Annual Election Period beginning in October.”