Reply
Periodic Contributor

AARP and their benefits

I think that with such a large population as we are, AARP could do much better with health benefits.  The prescription card is a joke!  I went to use the card and the script was denied for they were looking for a PA.  Really a PA from a discount prescription card.  The dental program is also a joke!  High cost for premiums and horrible benefits.  Why are you not offering an actual health insurance program for your members?  You used to provide this benefit and you took it away.  

 

I am rethinking being a member of AARP for seems my money is going into nonsense and nothing of tangle value.  

 

Best

C

0 Kudos
3,777 Views
10
Report
Periodic Contributor

Hello,
I appreciate, to some extent, the work AARP does to advocate for seniors and healthcare.  Even though this new legislation only applies to a few drugs; some progress is better than none.
 
I am VERY unhappy with the huge increase in the cost of AARP United Healthcare Supplemental insurance.  I chose this insurance because it carries the AARP name.  In fact, providers do NOT recognize the insurance I have if I refer to it as United Healthcare Supplemental.  AARP is the name this coverage is known by.  In 2016 I paid just under $149 per month.  In 2022 I am paying over $228 per month.  The difference represents a huge increase in cost.  My fixed income has definitely NOT increased by the same percentage.
 
I have written to AARP a number of times about this and have never received a reply.  Why doesn't AARP advocate on behalf of seniors who chose this insurance coverage because of the AARP branding and are experiencing unreasonable and basically ridiculous increases in the cost of that coverage?  What arrangement does AARP have with United Healthcare?  If AARP as an organization is benefitting from its connection with United Healthcare, why aren't AARP members who have an AARP Supplemental policy sharing in those benefits? 
 
I hope, this time, a representative from AARP responds to my serious questions and concerns.  
 
Marthanne
Marthanne
3,579 Views
7
Report
Regular Contributor

Hi @marthanneandmarc , AARP does not have access to look into your policy to review your coverage concerns, but we would be glad to help by reaching out to UnitedHealthcare's Executive-Level Resolutions Team on your behalf to thoroughly investigate. Please use this link (https://m.me/aarp) to submit a web help form and include the following information:

  • Your AARP Membership and AARP UnitedHealthcare member identification numbers
  • Description of your issue
  • Please mention that you are requesting an escalation

We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate you informing us of your concern. We look forward to hearing from you soon!

0 Kudos
3,360 Views
0
Report
Periodic Contributor

I forgot to mention that presciption card was a waste of time for me and of no help.  They requested a PA from my doctor's office.  As she said that is unheard of those cards and she was not going to waste her time.  I went with another card and no issues whatsoever. 

0 Kudos
3,488 Views
0
Report
Honored Social Butterfly


@marthanneandmarc wrote:
I am VERY unhappy with the huge increase in the cost of AARP United Healthcare Supplemental insurance.  I chose this insurance because it carries the AARP name.  In fact, providers do NOT recognize the insurance I have if I refer to it as United Healthcare Supplemental.  AARP is the name this coverage is known by.  In 2016 I paid just under $149 per month.  In 2022 I am paying over $228 per month.  The difference represents a huge increase in cost.  My fixed income has definitely NOT increased by the same percentage.
 
I have written to AARP a number of times about this and have never received a reply.  Why doesn't AARP advocate on behalf of seniors who chose this insurance coverage because of the AARP branding and are experiencing unreasonable and basically ridiculous increases in the cost of that coverage?  What arrangement does AARP have with United Healthcare?  If AARP as an organization is benefitting from its connection with United Healthcare, why aren't AARP members who have an AARP Supplemental policy sharing in those benefits? 
 

I am not a representative of AARP.org but I can give you some info with links to answer your questions.

 

The disclosure on the AARP UHC Supplemental Insurance

As you can read - AARP.org has nothing to do with the design or pricing of any insurance product that bears their logo.

It use to be that you had to be a member of AARP to have access to the AARP UHC Supplemental plan.  I assume that is still the case but don't know for sure.

 

AARP actually has nothing to do with the actual design or cost of their branded Medicare  Supplemental plan (Medigap) - It is up to the Feds and the States to determine plan design and rating / premium setting for all Medigap plans.

Medicare.gov The Cost of Medigap policies

The (3) ways of rating Medigap plans affect people in different way - as you can see from the link above - (2) types are age related and the other (community rated) has to do with the overall cost of healthcare and who is in the pool.

 

I believe most, maybe all, of the AARP UHC Medicare Supplemental plans are community rated type.  Some of these AARP UHC Supplemental plans, maybe all, have a declining discount  built into the premium at the start.  So early on your premium maybe lower but then as the discount declines the premium gets higher + there is also medical inflation that is also added in too as any other plan.   So, after several years depending upon how these conditions affect you and your plan - your premiums will escalate - of course, some years more than others.

 

All basic benefit designs of Medigap plans ALL look the same - they are set at the Federal level - same benefits depending upon the "alphabet" one which one chooses.

Example:   insurance company #1 has the SAME Medigap plan design of Insurance company # 2 for a Medigap Plan G - so the ONLY difference is the premiums which each charge based on their rating methodology and their covered pool.

 

The declining discount which UHC offers on some, maybe all, of their AARP branded supplemental plans is something that is specific to them on their rate setting.  There may also be other benefits that could be offered by specific insurance companies which try to entice one to "buy me"  but unless these are set in contract, they could easily disappear from a Medigap plan as many seniors saw years ago with the Silver Sneakers program was severed from their Medigap plan.

 

ALL Supplemental plan premiums will get higher and higher as time goes by - how much and how fast - is basically like any other insurance - based on medical use & inflation.  Traditional Medicare is also influenced by this too - Your Part B premium is based on usage of the program.  A beneficiary's Part B premiums represent 25% of the cost of the whole Part B program - the other 75% comes from our government's General Fund.  

 

Each [senior] person has to decide on their own the best route for their healthcare coverage - many people choose a Medicare Advantage plan instead of Traditional Medicare with a Medigap plan.  Others may have Traditional Medicare WITHOUT a Medigap but that does leave them open to financial liabiliy for their out-of-pocket cost.

Others have such low income that they are dual eligible and have joint coverage with Medicare and Medicaid.

 

As far as providers recognizing a Medigap plan - they don't actually have to because if a doc takes Medicare assignment, your claim is automatically sent to your Medigap insurer by CMS when your claim is processed.  The provider has little, if any,  contact at all with a Medigap insurer.  Tha's probably why they don't recognize their specific names.

 

It's Always Something . . . . Roseanna Roseannadanna
0 Kudos
3,511 Views
2
Report
Periodic Contributor

Thank you your reply.  I understand and knew already nearly all of what you wrote.  Since AARP has, as you suggest, no actual involvement with the United Healthcare Supplemental insurance benefits or cost WHY is the AARP brand on my insurance card, on the AARP website, and WHY is AARP the term used by every medical provider from primary care to hospitals that I have been to in the last 6 years?  Wondering how many people, like me, when they researched their Medicare supplement options were influenced by the AARP brand on this particular insurance??  IF AARP puts its brand on this particular company as its recommended provider of Medicare supplemental plans, why shouldn't consumers expect AARP to advocate on behalf of those who followed AARP's recommendation and branding?

Marthanne
3,491 Views
1
Report
Honored Social Butterfly

Because UHC has contracted with AARP to use their brand name and pays them royalties for the use of this registered name.  They have disclosures to this effect on all of them.   You assumed that it was "recommended" - recommended only because they make money off of it in royalties.  Recommended because their Ad, benefit development arm - AARP SERVICES, INC.  has helped in building the marketability of it to this selected population.  BTW, you don't even have to be a member of AARP to partake of the AARP UHC Medicare Advantage plan - or the AARP UHC Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage Plan.  But you do have to be a member for the branded Medigap plan - or use to.  Think this is still the case.

 

UHC has other Medicare Supplemental Plans that aren't AARP branded - I Believe?? !! - wonder what difference there is?

 

Not sure what you mean by "advocate"  for members - in the case of a Medigap, there is little AARP could advocate as I described earlier - their advocacy for anything is only to influence policy and programs at the government level - be that federal, state or local.

Read the Disclosure:

AARP commercial member benefits are provided by third parties, not by AARP or its affiliates. Providers pay a royalty fee to AARP for the use of its intellectual property. These fees are used for the general purposes of AARP. Some provider offers are subject to change and may have restrictions.

 

Of course, you and a lot of other people are influenced by the brand name.  But they ae just branded - AARP has a lot of branded products - the choice to get one of whatever type - from a credit card to insurance of all different types -  should always be in your best interest just like picking one that bears another name.  Before joining any group for some benefit, one needs to understand what their membership actually is and does - and ask themselves if this is what they want or need?

AARP benefits which bear their registered name is a revenue stream for the organization.    See that little (R) beside their name - "Registered"  - they own it and call sell it for royalties.

 

AARP SERVICES, INC - is the arm that develops the benefits for AARP - branded or otherwise.  From the AARP Services, Inc.  link:

Our Services

BRAND & DATA LICENSING

Helping companies lead the marketplace and reach valuable customers with a trusted brand and access to over 37M AARP members.

MARKETING SERVICES

We know the 50+ consumer best. Our marketing capabilities focus on consulting, creative development and campaign planning.

AUDIENCE SERVICES

Meet the 50+ where they are with our world-class data mining, advanced analytics and targeting capabilities.

INNOVATION SERVICES

Through uncovering the needs of aging consumers, we leverage our unique insights to help companies develop innovative product strategies and accelerate concept development.

 

 

 

It's Always Something . . . . Roseanna Roseannadanna
0 Kudos
3,470 Views
0
Report
Periodic Contributor

I am totally with you and I feel AARP could be doing so much more for us than they presently do wth all aspects.  I am curious as to their monthly contributions vs overhead including salaries!

3,553 Views
1
Report
Honored Social Butterfly


@ch8604 wrote:

  I am curious as to their monthly contributions vs overhead including salaries!


Can't give this info to you by month but here is their most resent FORM 990 that gives all this info - 

 

AARP.org - IRS Form 990 [2020] - they are a 501(c)(4) organization (membership organization) - it is all on the form -

  • the employees - think there are about 11-12;
  • a volunteer BOD to which expenses are covered and are listed on the form,
  • membership revenues, revenues from royalties, revenues from fund raising, revenues from various programs like safe drivers.
  • contributions to and donations to specific non-profit organization who are all listed
  • how much they give to the various state AARP chapters and for what
  • how much they pay lobbyist for assistance in Washington supporting various pieces of legislation usually in combination with other groups who are also support specific legislation.
  • how much it cost to do various surveys and fact finding to support their causes - like affordable housing.

This is the most recent one on file.

 

It's Always Something . . . . Roseanna Roseannadanna
0 Kudos
3,523 Views
0
Report
Periodic Contributor

The dental insurance from Delta is not such a great deal.  The lowest price plan in CA is ~$46/mo for a 1 year plan for two people while on the Delta site they offer a ~$17/mo for 1 year plan for two people.  The cost for fillings, crowns, etc is a little more in the $17/mo plan but not such that I pay $348 more a year.

0 Kudos
3,749 Views
1
Report
Honored Social Butterfly

From the disclosure on the following AARP benefit:

https://www.aarp.org/membership/benefits/insurance/delta-dental/ 

AARP® DENTAL INSURANCE PLAN ADMINISTERED BY DELTA DENTAL INSURANCE COMPANY

DISCLOSURES

AARP commercial member benefits are provided by third parties, not by AARP or its affiliates. Providers pay a royalty fee to AARP for the use of its intellectual property. These fees are used for the general purposes of AARP. Some provider offers are subject to change and may have restrictions.

 

State Availability

Not available in American Samoa, Guam and the Mariana Islands.

 

The AARP Services, Inc. is the arm of AARP that come up with these benefit combinations with commercial companies and sell the royalty rights.  AARP.org has little to do with any of the plans or benefits or their design/pricing - they aren't an insurance company.  When you want to know about many of these commercial benefits bearing the AARP logo you actually leave the AARP.org site and go to the specific commercial site to actually understand the detail of the specific branded plan. 

 

 

 

It's Always Something . . . . Roseanna Roseannadanna
0 Kudos
3,532 Views
0
Report
cancel
Showing results for 
Show  only  | Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Users
Need to Know

NEW: AARP Games Tournament Tuesdays! Achieve a top score in Right Again! Trivia and you could win up to $300 in prizes! Learn More.

AARP Games Tournament Tuesdays

More From AARP