Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, technology has been utilized in situations we had rarely utilized it before. One example of this was telemedience, which for a short time, allowed doctors to see patients via video chat rather than face to face meetings. For a while, this was a major convenience for patients who were doing simple checkups to get prescription refills.
While this adjustment was well appreciated by most, many in the industry feel that it led to an increase in opioid addiction as prescriptions became easier to get. Now, is that an actual fact or something that was used as an excuse to get insurance companies to drop coverage of this service faster? It depends on your perception of the service. However, what we do know is that the service was a hit among patients and will eventually be back, especially as technology advances and makes it even easier to have these types of consultations.
The ability for doctors to charge, even directly without insurance, for routine visits and checkups and see more patients throughout the day, is too much to ignore. Those with experience in the industry feel that we are within 10 years of telemedience being a regular feature of healthcare. The irony is that this service may have been 20 years or more away if not for our need of it during the pandemic.
As our personal and medical lives push us to less physical interaction with medical care professionals, insurance policies must keep up. Online pharmacies are the latest trend that is hitting society as patients are now able to order their medication online and have it shipped to their home, usually for less than they are used to paying or the same amount as the pharmacy charges.
With continued transition to a more digital means of care, the industry has to be ahead of the game. That’s part of the reason why a new rule has just been put in for health insurance advisors. This rule focuses on advisors recording their phone conversations with clients. CMS call recording is now mandatory but there are plenty of reasons this change has been added so suddenly as well as several ways it can assist you.
Why The Change?
The reason for the drastic change is to make sure that advisors are aware of the change and new policy prior to open enrollment. It is expected that a record number of people will sign up for Medicare and health insurance over the phone. This is not as much due to covid as it is a matter of convenience. Because these people have become more comfortable with phone and internet deals and transactions, they prefer this method because it is more efficient and convenient with their schedule. However, with health insurance, most people prefer at least speaking with a live person, especially during initial enrollment. That’s why calls for improving secuirty were needed, especially as millions of more people will be signing up for care given recent layoffs.
How Can CMS Call Recording Help?
For advisors, the key thing to understand is that this will only be a temporary burder as far as getting used to the process. Much like learning to use the computer for the job, once you get the new system down, you will start to see benefits of using it over not having it originally. Some of these advantages include:
- Better organization: With an increased number of calls and clients, open enrollment certainly is a hectic time and there are plenty of challenges when it comes to staying organized. What was the last name of that client or their date of birth? What was the one doctor they wanted to make sure was going to be able to take this insurance? If you are not sure of something, you can always return to the call recording and reference it so that you can better serve your clients.
- Improved security of personal information: Many clients still prefer not to transfer their information digitally such as email. That’s understandable given the information they are giving away. A phone call could make them feel more safer and recording the information allows you to make sure that you are the only one who can access it and that the information is not digital accept for your files which are secure.
- Faster service: A common mistake made by agents during open enrollment is that they struggle with maintaining communication with individual clients. Dealing with so many people at once can make things much more difficult. Therefore, having call recording ensures that you do not need to worry about having to have clients repeat themselves or for you to take detailed notes. Instead, you can focus on the information you need to initially, and then return to the call records later to get the details you need to customize the coverage each client gets which means great service.
- Customized training: Another key advantage to adding the CMS call recording feature to your day to day routines is that you can now get customized training. This means that you are able to hear exactly what your strengths are and also work on any areas that need specific attention. For example, perhaps you have an issue getting meetings done under an hour with clients. While you do not want to rush them, you have a lot of work to do. Listening to old calls allows you to see places you can cut time and improve efficiency.
The health insurance filed has to continue to adapt and implement new options or rules that will benefit and protect agents and patients all around. This is one of those changes but it also can offer a variety of benefits to an advisor. The key is to understand these advantages and learn how they can help you get better at your job and improve efficiency.
How CMS Call Recording Will Impact Open Enrollement For Advisors
Make no mistake, the rule for adding CMS call recording will have a significant impact on advisors, especially during this upcoming open enrollment. You have to learn new technology and a new way of having your phone meetings with clients. While it will take time to get used to, it is still something that needs to be worked into your routine, especially if you are not familiar with the systems.
Aside from the many benefits that these systems will offer you when it comes to communication and organization, there will be added work needed this year as far as getting comfortable with handling the system and making sure that it does not interfere with the service your clients are receiving.
Important Things To Learn Quickly
With new technology comes a learning curve. Based on the system you prefer to use or are able to access, you may want to give yourself some additional time to train. Be sure that you can easily access your account, begin the recording, stop it and save it as needed. Most systems will have an automatic way to save but it’s important to check that feature before getting started.