Thursday, January 2, 2014

Changes and Answered Prayers

It has been much too long since my last blog post and with the New Year already here, I thought it would be a good time to catch you up on news in my business.      

So many changes happened within the healthcare industry in these last few months.    Every August, I complete Medicare certifications for each insurance carrier that I work with.     In total, that equals about three hours for each carrier and this year, I chose to work with five insurance carriers.     Next, came certifications and classes regarding all the changes in the healthcare industry.     Between classes and certifications, the total time spent was about fifteen hours.      Learning is always something that is challenging and interesting to me so I am not complaining at all.     It is actually enjoyable to me.    

Once my certifications were completed, I was told that I would receive an e-mail with a special number for the healthcare website.     When the e-mail never came, I made a call to my insurance contact and she shared with me how behind they were and not to worry.      Everything was done as according to what they needed and there was plenty of time before October 1st.   

October 1st came and all heck broke loose.     Clients were calling interested in insurance, my clients were calling because there current policies were being cancelled, the hospital in my home town would not be a part of the new network for the healthcare exchange, and if you haven't heard of this by now, the new website was experiencing delays, glitches, and just frustrating everyone.     

During this time frame (between October 1st - December 7th), I was asked to stand at a booth by an insurance carrier in a local store in our town to answer questions regarding not only Medicare, but help people with their options on the new website.     Each year, I do this for Medicare and because the enrollment period for healthcare was at the same time, the insurance carrier asked me to do both.     The first two weeks doing this went pretty well.     Then, I walked in one day to find another agent sitting at the booth.     There was a mix up in the scheduling and now there were two agents working at the same booth.    We worked out the details to make sure that both of us had the opportunity to work there on different days and everything seemed to be going well.     Then, my insurance carrier called and told me that agents across the country were getting threatened because they were so angry about the new healthcare website not working.      They decided to pull out of the store.     I'm a firm believer that everything happens for a reason and with clients calling continually with questions, I felt that this was for the best.     And it was.   

Late in October, agents received notification that the healthcare website should be up and running more smoothly by the end of November.     I was able to do everything such as get quotes on my own directly from the insurance carrier and calculate what subsidies would be available for clients.    This helped clients take a look at plans, figure out what their premiums would be, and ask questions while they waited for things at to work smoothly.    

November 30th came and the website did work.     It was a sigh of relief as clients were anxious and so was I.     Clients were getting covered, however, there was another hiccup.     There was no way for clients to pay at the end of signing up.    When I would call to help clients out, the insurance agency had no way for them to see if I had actually helped the client or if they had put my agent code in even though I would do this right in front of clients.    As a broker, there has to be proof that you are the broker of record in order for the insurance carrier to give you any information on effective dates, payment information, etc.    

With one frustration after the next, I was wondering if I would be able to make it in this business.     I can't even begin to tell you how many times I would pray about this.     I was worried all the time about clients not being covered, anxious, and overwhelmed.    

Then, my prayers were answered.     I met with a client that needed help with Medicare plans.     With Medicare, an agent must give a presentation so that clients can have a better understanding of what they are getting.     In the middle of the presentation, the client stopped me and said, " I have been praying to find someone to explain this to me in a way that I can understand.   You are my answered prayer."    It was such a blessing to me.     Just shortly after that, I was working with a client that needed help with his health insurance.    He did qualify for a subsidy so we worked together on the application for his insurance.     It took awhile, but he needed the coverage and together, we got it done.      When I was getting ready to leave, he thanked me for having the patience of a saint and shared how relieved he was that he had me to help him through the process.     He stated that he couldn't have done it without me and he would always be grateful.      Another blessing.    

In closing, I will continue on.     I know that there are challenges ahead, but we will prevail.      This business has been a blessing to my family and I pray that it will be a continued blessing to my clients.    They can tell my they are grateful and it certainly is appreciated.      The real blessing is the people that I have the opportunity to help each day and I am grateful for everyone of them.    It is my prayer that they always know it.    


  1. Very nice! This will separate you from the 'other agents' in the world.

    1. Thank you so much, Trudy. I really appreciate you. So glad I "met" you on Facebook.