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Randi Morse Joins Allen Insurance and Financial

Randi Morse

Randi Morse

Randi Morse has joined Allen Insurance and Financial as an account manager in the company’s benefits division.

Randi  is a graduate of Everest University with a degree in accounting. Before joining Allen, with her first insurance job, she worked for a decade in the  information technology field in accounting and administrative support.

She received her accident & health producer license in Maine shortly after her arrival at Allen and she is looking forward to supporting the agency’s benefits clients with top-notch service for their accounts.

Outside of work, she volunteers with the American Legion, helping those veterans in need because her husband is a military veteran. She also enjoys spending time with family.

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Do You Need Health Insurance for Your Trip Abroad?

Whether you’re traveling for business or pleasure, a trip abroad takes a lot of research and planning before the fun (or work) begins. In addition to looking up flights, hotels, attractions, eateries, and how to ask, “Where’s the restroom?,” in a new language, there’s another important topic you should explore before you go: health insurance. There is always a risk of experiencing an unexpected illness or an injury on a trip. And, if you need medical care in another country, you don’t want to be on the hook for the full expense if you can avoid it.

You’ve likely done careful budgeting to figure out how to finance your vacation, so the last thing you want (besides a health-related setback!) is an unexpected medical bill. Travel health insurance can help provide financial protection if you need medical care while abroad. This not only can provide peace of mind, but it can help you avoid potentially devastating financial losses if you become sick or hurt.

What Is Travel Health Insurance?
Travel health insurance can provide coverage for expenses, including hospital stays, emergency medical care, and transportation costs when you’re away from home. The specific coverage and benefits of each policy vary depending on the plan and the insurance provider, so it’s important to understand what’s covered and what isn’t before choosing. Of course, you’ll want to keep your costs reasonable, but you’ll also want to be covered for the most likely scenarios.

Do I Really Need It?
Your first step in figuring out the answer to this question should be to check with your regular health insurance provider to determine whether your policy provides coverage for medical expenses incurred while abroad. If it’s covered and you feel the coverage is sufficient, you may not need to look any further. Keep in mind, even if your regular policy offers some coverage, it may be limited or may not cover certain types of medical care, so ask about specifics. And it’s important to note that Medicare isn’t accepted abroad. Some credit cards offer travel insurance that may cover medical care, so that can be another option to explore. The cost of medical care can be much higher in other countries, especially if you need emergency care, so if your regular policy doesn’t cover that, look into additional coverage.

It’s also worth noting that some countries actually require proof of health insurance before they’ll allow entry, including Cuba, Antarctica, and the United Arab Emirates.

What Types Are Available?
The kinds of policies you can choose from include:

• Short-term travel health insurance. This provides coverage for a specific trip or period of time, usually up to six months. It can be a good option if you’ll be abroad for a short trip.
• Long-term travel health insurance. If you’re planning to travel for several months or even a year, a long-term travel health insurance policy may be a better choice for you. These policies typically offer more comprehensive coverage and may be more cost effective over an extended period.
• Medical evacuation insurance. This covers the cost of emergency medical transportation, such as an air ambulance, if you become seriously ill or injured while traveling. Although this might not be necessary for a standard trip out of the country, you’ll want to consider it if you’re traveling to a remote location or a country with limited medical facilities.

How Should I Choose a Policy?
When making this decision, consider:

• Coverage. Look for a policy that provides comprehensive coverage for medical expenses, emergency care, and medical evacuation. If you have preexisting conditions, your policy should cover those (some don’t, in which case having a preexisting condition would exclude you from coverage). Be sure to read the policy carefully so you know what’s covered and what isn’t.
• Cost. Travel health insurance can vary widely in price, so shop around and compare rates from different providers. The cheapest policy may not provide the best coverage, so consider the cost-benefit analysis when making your choice.
• Provider network. Check to see if the insurance provider has a network of medical providers in the countries you’ll be visiting. An affordable policy that offers comprehensive coverage is of no use to you if it doesn’t cover doctors in your destination.
• Policy limitations. Some policies may have limitations on coverage for preexisting conditions, adventure sports such as sky diving, or certain types of medical care.
• Customer service. Look for an insurance provider with good customer service and a 24/7 helpline you can contact if you need assistance while traveling (especially if there is a time difference to consider).

Once you’ve purchased insurance, be sure to carry your insurance card and/or a copy of your policy with you during your trip. If you do find yourself in need of medical care while abroad, the U.S. Embassy will be able to provide information about local doctors and hospitals. Even if you don’t expect to run into medical issues, a sudden illness or accident can cause a huge financial loss. It’s best to be prepared.

As always, we’re happy to answer any questions you might have about this topic as you figure out your insurance needs. And we wish you happy and healthy travels!

© 2023 Commonwealth Financial Network®

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Anna Moorman Recognized by Anthem for Medicare Sales

Anna Moorman

Anna Moorman

Anna Moorman of Allen Insurance and Financial has been recognized with a gold level award for Medicare supplement sales in 2022 by Anthem, one of the largest Medicare supplement carriers in the state of Maine.

Moorman is one of three agents at Allen Insurance and Financial who specialize in the complex market of Medicare insurance, working with a number of insurance carriers to give customers a range of choices to suit their needs. Moorman has been with Allen Insurance and Financial since 2012.

This is the eighth consecutive year that Moorman has received an award from Anthem for Medicare sales; she is consistently ranked in the top three of Anthem’s sales leaders in Maine.

Moorman and her colleagues Jo-Ann Neal and Lee Cabana have a goal of simplifying the process of enrolling in a Medicare plan, by providing dedicated, one-on-one attention to their customers, assessing each person’s needs and finding options that will align with their budget and healthcare goals.

Anna Moorman of Allen Insurance and Financial, and Angela Sanborn, Anthem agency service representative for Maine and New Hampshire.
Anna Moorman of Allen Insurance and Financial, and Angela Sanborn, Anthem agency service representative for Maine and New Hampshire.
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End of Public Health Emergency Means Changes in Health Insurance Coverage (MaineCare)

In December 2022 Congress passed a law regarding the COVID-19 public health emergency that will cause the State of Maine to conduct a review of every member on MaineCare to determine their ongoing eligibility for coverage. The process will start in April 2023 and a full review must be completed by May of 2024. By the end of the process it is expected that 65,000 to 90,000 individuals will lose MaineCare.

If you are someone impacted by the loss of MaineCare, you will have a 90-day special enrollment period (SEP) before or after your MaineCare ends to purchase a health plan in the private market. If you need assistance with this process, we have specialists in our office who can assist you with this process. Call 236-4311 and ask for a member of our benefits team to help you with individual health insurance.

Here are some additional notes for those who want to read more:

What is the Medicaid Continuous Coverage requirement?

  1. Public health emergency declared in Jan 2020 because of COVID19
  2. Received increase from the feds to help offset the cost of Medicaid- to receive those resources states had to agree to provide continuous coverage and not terminate Medicaid coverage
  3. This means even if someone should lose MaineCare because of a change in income, they continued to be enrolled in Medicaid
  4. In December 2022 Congress passed a law that separates the continuous coverage provided from the COVID-19 public health emergency and in April 2023 every state has to begin review Medicaid eligibility

Implications for MaineCare members?

  1. In April 2023 states need to start review of every MaineCare member’s eligibility
  2. States have 12 months to initiate the process
  3. May 2024 is the last month for the state’s Office for Family Independence to complete all renewals/terminations
  4. About 1 in 3 Mainers are covered by MaineCare
  5. By the end of the redetermination process an estimated 65,000 to 90,000 members will lose MaineCare
  6. Renewals start April 2023 and for example if a member is typically reviewed in July of 2021, they would be reviewed in July 2023
  7. Current members will lose MaineCare if they do not fill out renewal paperwork or respond to requests for income verification or if they are determined to no longer be eligible because of their income

Preventing coverage loss?

  1. Renewal letter will go out one month prior to scheduled renewal
  2. OFI will mail members a pre-populated renewal form in an envelope with a blue box
  3. OFI will also text and email members with a reminder
  4. Renewals can be submitted online at www.mymaineconnection.gov
  5. On May 11, 2023, MaineCare will stop waiving copays, premiums for CubCare, etc

CoverME.gov

  1. Loss of MaineCare will create a qualifying event for individuals to apply for coverage through the Marketplace
  2. Applying for MaineCare and being uninsured then denied MainecCare no longer creates a qualifying life event to enroll in a Marketplace plan
  3. With a loss of MaineCare, there’s a 60-day Special Enrollment Period for Marketplace enrollment

Additional information: www.mainecare.gov/unwinding

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Greg Karlik Joins Our Benefits Team

Greg KarlikGreg Karlik has joined the benefits division at Allen Insurance and Financial to work with individual and group health insurance clients.

Following a three decades-long career in the television broadcasting industry, Karlik has spent the past three years as a licensed insurance professional in the individual health insurance market place, helping customers manage and better understand, what, for many, is a stressful decision-making process.

He is a graduate of the University of Vermont and the University of San Francisco, where he earned a Master of Business Administration.

Karlik and his family live in Northport. Outside of work, he enjoys spending time with his wife, their children and two dogs as well as gardening and exploring the Maine outdoors.

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Schedule of Medicare 101 Workshops – September 2022

Allen Insurance and Financial is offering a series of  Medicare 101 workshops in September. We hope you can join us.

All workshops are free and open to everyone, though registration is required. All will be offered via Zoom and run from 5 to 6:30 p.m.  Zoom information will be send upon registration. Here is the schedule, which is  also available online at AllenIF.com/Medicare.

  • Tuesday, Sept. 13: Register via email with  Hope Library at email hidden; JavaScript is required.
  • Wednesday, Sept. 14: Register with Medomak Valley Adult Education; register at msad40.coursestorm.com.
  • Thursday, Sept. 15: Register with Belfast Adult Education; belfast.maineadulted.org.
  • Wednesday, Sept. 21: Register with Five-Town Adult Education (Camden Hills): fivetowns.maineadulted.org
  • Wednesday, Sept. 28: Register with Medomak Valley Adult Education; register at msad40.coursestorm.com

During these workshop, Jo-Ann Neal and Anna Moorman of Allen Insurance and Financial’s Benefits Division will help answer questions, including:

  • What does Medicare cover?
  • What does Medicare NOT cover?
  • When can I enroll in Medicare?
  • What is a Medicare Advantage Plan?
  • What is a Medicare Supplement Plan?
  • What plan is best for me?

Anna Moorman and Jo-Ann Neal specialize in Medicare and will be available for a question and answer session following the presentation.  Meet Anna and Jo-Ann in this YouTube video.

 

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Anna Moorman Now Licensed as an Insurance Consultant in Maine

Anna Moorman

Anna Moorman, a member of the benefits team at Allen Insurance and Financial specializing in individual health insurance and Medicare,  is now a licensed life & health insurance consultant in Maine.

“Anna’s efforts demonstrate her deep commitment to continuing professional development,” said Mike Pierce, company president. “This commitment is important to all of our insurance divisions but it is especially so in the always-changing field of employee benefits.”

Moorman has been with Allen Insurance and Financial since 2012. She lives in Thomaston with her family.

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The Value of Disability Insurance to Employers and their Employees

By Sherree Craig, CEBS

Sherree L. Craig, CEBS

Sherree L. Craig, CEBS

Companies in Maine and across the country face the challenge of rewarding employees and this struggle rose to the surface significantly during the pandemic. Striking the balance between a workable company budget and the satisfaction of the company’s human capital is critical.

One of the most affordable and valuable forms of financial protection for employees is disability insurance. Offering a disability plan emphasizes a company’s commitment to the health and financial well-being of its workforce, providing employees with an income when recovering from an accident or an illness. An employee can recover peacefully without the burden of worrying where the next paycheck might be and allows them to place their focus on immediate medical needs.

In addition to being a deductible business expense, this offer could have an impact on the company’s workers’ compensation status. Once an employer sponsored disability plan is purchased, conversations with business insurance and accounting partners should take place.

Disability insurance is designed as short-term and/or long-term policies.

The short-term disability benefit is paid weekly. Pricing for the group plan is determined by the design of the contract and the group demographics (age, wages, industry). The following are some plan design considerations:

  • How many days will the employee be disabled before the payments begin? One frequent plan design option is the first day following an accident and the eighth day following an illness. We see these go as high as two weeks, which would keep the costs exceptionally low, but could come at the expense of the employee’s satisfaction.
  • How long will the payments last? Options typically are 13 weeks or 26 weeks.
  • What percentage of earnings will be replaced? Disability insurance does not normally cover full replacement. Insurance theory dictates that full replacement might encourage malingering – an incentive to remain disabled and not return to active capacity as soon as they are able.

Like the short-term disability, long-term disability policies are priced on the demographics of the company and design of the plan. The long-term disability benefit is paid monthly rather than weekly, and the elimination period (the length of time from the start of the disability until payment begins) can be dovetailed to start at the end of the short-term disability benefit. The benefit period may depend on the company size but should be designed to last a minimum of five years or all the way to the normal social security retirement age.

A group disability package has the added advantages of group pricing and are free from medical underwriting, making the plan simple to establish and administer.

Curious to see how your benefits stack up against other employers in your industry and community? Principal insurance has a great benchmarking tool. https://www.principal.com/businesses/compare-benefits

Principal Benefit Design Tool | Principal