Anthem and its affiliated well being plans are placing a deal with increasing its slate of packages concentrating on the social determinants of well being to achieve members in additional geographies for the 2021 plan yr.
Martin Esquivel, vice chairman of Medicare product administration at Anthem, informed Fierce Healthcare that over the previous yr the insurer has grown the variety of plans providing such advantages by 50%.
“That was an vital part for us,” Esquivel mentioned.
Anthem can be growing the variety of counties by which it provides a Medicare Benefit plan by 20% and can enter Iowa for the primary time. It’s going to additionally cowl all counties in Tennessee and Kentucky for 2021.
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The COVID-19 pandemic opened the door for brand spanking new flexibilities round these supplemental advantages, Esquivel mentioned. For instance, if a member had chosen an grownup day-care profit, they got the prospect to change to one thing that will be extra invaluable to them amid social distancing.
Transportation was one other profit that members got the chance to change from beneath the pandemic, as they weren’t as prone to be touring out of their properties to keep away from spreading or catching the virus, he mentioned.
“The excellent news is that we had been fairly properly ready for the pandemic by way of the sorts of advantages that we provide,” Esquivel mentioned. “What we did is throughout the social determinants profit we made certain that entry to a specific profit wasn’t hampered by the pandemic.”
The pandemic additionally put a highlight on the insurer’s group useful resource groups, each by way of the work they did in educating members about their profit choices and in addition the way in which they may establish different social wants that may very well be addressed, he mentioned.
Esquivel mentioned there are a slew of examples of those groups figuring out essential points throughout Anthem’s MA membership, reminiscent of a state of affairs the place the insurer was in a position to intervene for a member residing in a house infested with black mildew.
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Anthem additionally already supplied telehealth advantages for its Medicare members, however the pandemic emphasised the necessity to guarantee beneficiaries are conscious of those choices and reap the benefits of them, he mentioned.
Anthem will supply telehealth visits for in-network suppliers at $zero via the tip of the yr.
“What the pandemic did was actually fast-track how the world adopted this know-how and ensuring or making certain that our members had entry to telehealth providers primarily via their PCP or medical group was the easiest way that we may guarantee continuity within the providers being supplied,” Esquivel mentioned.
With open enrollment on the horizon, Esquivel mentioned he’s seeing the profit choices in Medicare Benefit proceed to develop throughout the business. This market line is rising enterprise for quite a few insurers each on the nationwide and regional ranges, significantly as child boomers proceed to age into Medicare.
Esquivel mentioned the competitors is finally good for seniors, who’ve loads of selections to make sure they’re choosing the Medicare protection that finest meets their wants.
“The business has saved up,” he mentioned. “I feel that’s solely a very good factor for the patron.”
Medicare open enrollment begins on Oct. 15.