Ignoring OTC Benefits? You Could Be Missing Out on Sales

Promoting OTC and other Medicare benefits are powerful sales tools. Here’s why you should be talking to your beneficiaries about OTC benefits.
otc benefits
1 May 2021

Ignoring OTC Benefits? You Could Be Missing Out on Sales

Are you using all the sales tools you have? You may think you are, but what about the unique benefits in the Medicare Advantage plans you sell? As a Medicare insurance professional, knowing the features of every plan can be hard to keep up with. But features like OTC benefits can also be incredibly valuable.

Very often, the plans you sell provide benefits beyond doctor visits and procedural coverage. For example, some Medicare Advantage plans cover the costs of over-the-counter (OTC) medications and other out-of-pocket medical expenses. This is a great feature, but we’ve found that few agents use this excellent extra as a selling point.

What are OTC benefits?

Medicare Advantage plans have specific goals including improved preventive care, fewer medical complications and lower costs. To help them meet this goal, they have more flexibility in the benefits they’re allowed to offer. OTC benefits are an integral part of reaching those goals. More than 50% of Medicare Advantage beneficiaries had OTC benefits in 2019 covering

  • transportation for non-emergencies,
  • caregiver support,
  • aging-in-place home remodeling,
  • certain home-based palliative care,
  • meal delivery at home,
  • pain relievers and fever reducers,
  • allergy sprays and gels,
  • cold and flu products,
  • first aid supplies, and
  • skin and sun care products.

Those are just a few examples of what OTC benefits can cover. OTC benefits can even partially cover motorized scooters, chairlifts and more. If your clients aren’t using these benefits, they should be. And you should be using OTC benefits to sell more Medicare Advantage plans! Here’s why.

Sales Tool #1: Educating your clients

So many Medicare beneficiaries have OTC benefits but don’t use them. Some don’t know the benefits exist. And some don’t realize that plans with OTC coverage will help them save money. Others simply aren’t sure how to use them. It’s a matter of education… or lack thereof. Helping your clients fully understand this feature of their Medicare Advantage plan ensures they’ll get the full use of this money-saving benefit.

When you educate, you empower. So take the time to talk to your clients about OTC benefits. They should know if these benefits are part of their plan, the rules and restrictions, and how to use them.

Sales Tool #2: Boost customer confidence

Education translates directly to improved confidence in your ability to sell clients the best-fit Medicare product for them. When you provide details about OTC benefits, most beneficiaries aren’t just impressed by your product knowledge. They’ll also see you as someone who cares enough to make sure they’re getting the most out of their plan.

Making sure your clients understand every plan benefit, especially OTC benefits, is an integral part of building their confidence in you.

Sales Tool #3: Help clients save money

You want your clients to have confidence in you, and you want them to trust you. Taking specific action to save your clients money inherently builds that trust. Your clients know you understand their needs and have their best interests at heart. By specifically targeting OTC benefits, you’re helping them keep their monthly expenses down. They’ll certainly recognize the care you take to help them save money on their healthcare needs.

Sales Tool #4: Increase your sales

Clients who appreciate your product knowledge and trust you will be more likely to buy from you. Sharing added benefit information like OTC coverage builds the rapport that makes that trust possible. You give them confidence in the product and in you which almost always results in a sale.

Granted, they may consider the information you’ve provided and decide there’s a better plan out there. But that doesn’t mean you’re losing out! In most cases, beneficiaries who find a Medicare broker they trust will continue to work with them until they’re matched with a Medicare coverage option they like.

And the benefit won’t stop with just one satisfied client. Clients who are happy with their service tell their friends and family. And, as you know, referrals are by far the easiest way to gain clients. So go the extra mile helping your clients, get those referrals and increase your sales!

Promoting OTC benefits is a powerful sales tool that benefits both you and your clients. Don’t miss out on this easy opportunity to improve your current customer relationships and to increase your sales. To learn more about OTC benefits, contact us today for assistance.


image credit: shutterstock/Kathryn Roach