Covered Cal Likes Football

Did you watch the NFC Championship game Rams v 49ers? Sorry if  you were trying to escape from work, but you may have noticed  Covered Cal ads.  That was the final push to get Californians enrolled.  In case you missed it: the commercial was titled “Portraits,” and was part of Covered California’s “This Way to Health Insurance” campaign.

MENTAL HEALTH

Take Part in Cal Broker’s Mental Health Benefits Survey

California Broker magazine added a new survey to our lineup last year: mental health benefits. If you represent a company that works in the mental health benefits space, please reach out. Our goddess of surveys/views from the top is Thora Madden. Email Thora at thora@calbrokermag.com. Mental health benefits are so important right now and we want to help you get in touch with the folks that need to know about what you do.

HEALTH

DMHC Announces Health Equity and Quality Committee Members, First Meeting

The Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) announced the establishment of a Health Equity and Quality Committee to help eliminate health care disparities for Californians in accordance with Assembly Bill (AB) 133. The Committee will make recommendations for standard health equity and quality measures, including annual benchmark standards for health plans to assess equity and quality in health care delivery. DMHC Director Mary Watanabe said establishing the Health Equity and Quality Committee is the first step toward creating actionable and measured outcomes to hold health plans to a higher standard on equity and quality.

The Committee’s first meeting will be virtual on Thursday, February 24, 2022. The Committee will provide its recommendations to the DMHC Director by September 30, 2022. Following the recommendations and after the DMHC adopts standard health equity and quality measures, health plans will be required to annually report equity and quality data and information to the Department. Starting in 2025, the DMHC will publish a Health Equity and Quality Compliance Report on the data and information reported by health plans.

The Committee members and additional information about meetings can be found on the Health Equity and Quality Committee page of the DMHC’s website. All meetings are open to the public.

CRITICAL ILLNESS

Assurity Launches Consumer-direct Criticalillness.com

Not so sure agent’s will love this, but we’ll tell you anyhow…Assurity Life Insurance Company has launched criticalillness.com, a self-service platform for buying critical illness insurance. The website, which is available now, allows consumer to directly buy coverage for serious diseases by offering a streamlined product with a short application. Criticalillness.com is Assurity’s first consumer-direct offering and focuses on coverage for four of the most common serious diseases: Heart attack, stroke, cancer and advanced Alzheimer’s Disease. The company says it was built for speed and ease of use, with most coverage decisions made after an application of only five health questions. The insurance policy pays a cash benefit for the diagnosis of covered diseases and conditions that customers can use for whatever they want.

SELF INSURANCE

Calling All Future Leaders

The Self-Insurance Institute of America, Inc. (SIIA) announced the formation of its Future Leaders Forum, scheduled for April 11-12, 2022 in Indianapolis.

This new in-person event has been developed by the association’s Future Leaders Committee, specifically for under-40 self-insurance/captive insurance industry professionals. Consistent with this mission, it combines highly targeted educational content combined with both structured and unstructured networking opportunities.

SIIA says that if you are younger professional and plan to build your career within the self-insurance/captive insurance industry, this a must-attend event. SIIA also hopes that companies make the conference available to their “rising stars”.

Early event sponsors include Hi-Tech Health.  If your company would also like to support this initiative, contact Justin Miller for sponsorship information at jmiller@siia.org.

For additional event information and to register, click here.

LIFE

LIMRA: Black Americans Own More Life Insurance Than Average, Still There’s An Opportunity

According to the 2021 Insurance Barometer study, conducted by LIMRA and Life Happens, 56% of Black Americans own life insurance, which is higher than the national average (52%). Yet 46% of Black Americans — representing 20 million adults — say they need (or need more) life insurance coverage, which LIMRA says indicates a substantial opportunity for life agents.

According to LIMRA research, 58% of Black Americans said they intend to purchase life insurance within the year — significantly higher than the general population’s purchase intent (36%).  Read the full industry trend report here.

MEDICARE

It’s All About An Alzheimer’s Drug? Wow

Several leading advocacy groups are urging the federal government to lower Medicare premiums that were hiked now that use of a new Alzheimer’s drug — the primary driver of the record hike in the 2022 premium — is under review. It’s really hard to believe that it boils down to one drug, but you can read more about it at InvestmentNews.

ANNUITIES

Good News for Annuity Sales

According to the Secure Retirement Institute, total U.S. annuity sales were $254.8 billion in 2021, up 16% from 2020. This represents the highest annual annuity sales since 2008, and the third highest sales recorded in history, according to preliminary results from the Secure Retirement Institute’s U.S. Individual Annuity Sales Survey.

EVENTS

  • You Powered Benefits Symposium, in person, Feb 6-9, Phoenix. Info here.
  • NAAIA, National Black History Month Program, Feb 18, 8-10am PT. Info here.
  • NAIFA-LA & FSP-Pasadena Will G. Farrell Awards Event, online, Feb 24, Info here.
  • LIMRA’s 2022 Distribution Conference, in-person, March 1-3, Miami, FL, Info here.
  • CAHU Women’s Leadership Summit, in person, March 14-16, 2022, Green Valley Ranch, Las Vegas, Info and registration here.
  • LAAHU Annual Symposium, in person, April 26, Pasadena Convention Center. Info here.
  • BenefitsPro Broker Expo, in person, May 23-25, 2022, Austin, TX. Request more info here. Register here.