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Three ways healthcare can affect clients’ finances

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How financial advisors can help

According to a 2017 Gallup poll, the cost of healthcare is the top financial concern for Americans. While many Americans have limited savings and would struggle to pay their deductibles or other medical bills, rapidly increasing insurance costs affect the financial well being of consumers with higher incomes, too.

For financial advisors, there are three particular areas that may affect your clients’ finances and wealth management—Medicare, under-65 insurance costs, and medical billing for high severity healthcare experiences.

This is why more financial advisors are integrating healthcare and health insurance advising into their practices, either in-house or through partnerships with noncommissioned advisors like Bernard Health.

Here’s what financial advisors should know.

How healthcare affects your clients’ finances

Medicare

We estimate there are 18 Medicare strategies, and the overwhelming number of options typically means most consumers don’t have the most cost-effective strategy. Medicare is a reoccurring and long-term expense for your clients, so finding the right combination of plans and products is key. Further, the timing of signing up for Medicare is very important and can have a significant impact on your clients’ retirement plans. If your client works past 65, should they stay on the employer plan, or move to Medicare? Bernard Health can assist clients in making this and other decisions.

Individual family members

In the event that your client does drop his or her employer-sponsored family plan, the spouse and any dependents will be affected. Alternatively, for clients not yet eligible for Medicare, finding the right family strategy is a major financial concern. Most consumers have more options than they realize, including workplace plans, marketplace plans, off-exchange plans, short-term options, and more. In many cases, it makes more financial sense to have different family members on different health plans. It is difficult for most consumers to compare these options, which is where the help of an experienced advisor is extremely beneficial.

Bill audit

Industry groups estimate up to 80 percent of medical bills contain errors. For most wealth management clients, a small upcharge may not make a significant impact on financial well being. But for high acuity, severe medical experiences—cancer treatment, a stroke or heart attack, life-threatening injuries—medical bills can become exorbitant. Most consumers benefit from having a liaison to advocate on their behalf between the provider and insurance companies. Bernard Health can audit medical bills, ensure charges are accurate, dispute any issues, and help your clients find the most cost-effective way to pay.

Learn more about the Healthcare Extension through Bernard Health by clicking below.

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