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AARP to Offer Expanded Health Coverage
Old 04-17-2007, 04:45 PM   #1
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AARP to Offer Expanded Health Coverage

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The group also struck a new partnership with Aetna Inc. to design, underwrite and administer a range of health plans for the under-65 set.
AARP says its move is an effort to improve the health and to bring more affordable and stable health care coverage to a population that increasingly finds it out of reach. Unless they're covered by an employer, many Americans between the ages of 50 and 64 find individual insurance either too expensive or simply unavailable from health insurers eager to avoid customers in declining health.

Although Aetna would still underwrite, or price premiums individually based on a customer's health and demographics, it would be required to take a more flexible approach than many commercial insurers currently do. Members who bought the plans also would have access to disease management programs and other tools designed to monitor and improve chronic conditions such as diabetes—and which are typically only available through an employer group plan.
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Re: AARP to Offer Expanded Health Coverage
Old 04-18-2007, 03:02 PM   #2
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Re: AARP to Offer Expanded Health Coverage

I'm not 100% positive but I think I read that this coverage would only go through 2015. In my case, I'd be 60 then and it would be impossible to find another insurance policy to cover me until Medicare (if and when) kicks in...
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Re: AARP to Offer Expanded Health Coverage
Old 04-18-2007, 04:59 PM   #3
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Re: AARP to Offer Expanded Health Coverage

Plans offered by AARP are really not underwritten any differently than any other healthplan. Insurance carriers pair up with AARP because they know it's smart marketing for them....makes them look better and helps diffuse the "evil" insurance company reputation. You fell for the marketing scheme! Wait till you see the guess is that they will pair high deductibles (2500 and up) with an additional coinsurance, and limited benefits for Rx and office visit coverage. That is the only way that they are going to be able to be more "lenient" with the underwriting, and offer competitive pricing. If you don't believe me, order a brochure/quote regarding AARP's existing plans that they offer through United Healthcare. Price/Quality is no different than what you can already find out there in the market. In some cases, price may be even higher than what you could get from another product out in the marketplace for the same or better quality!

It's ironic to me that an organization that spends so much time advocating universal care would pair up with insurance carriers, broker and collect commissions on private insurance for financial gain. I wonder if they give those commissions back to their members in the form of free services?

A good broker can prescreen your current health status and help you find a plan that will work well for you. Humana, for example is much more lenient with underwriting on certain conditions than some other carriers are. Other carriers may be more lenient in other areas. It really is just a matter of calling around in advance and finding a carrier that will work best.

I just found out from my sales rep that Humana of Colorado recently approved a breast cancer survivor for individual insurance with a clean bill of health from her doctor! (I think she was about five years out). It took a little bit of work between the broker, the sales rep, and the underwriter, but they did it....hard to believe...

Also, most other carriers already offer disease management programs and other "stay healthy" tools, discount programs and incentives along with their healthplans.
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