As a life insurance agent, properly preparing potential clients for paramedical exams is extremely important to your bottom line. To the average consumer it may seem like a simple physical but the fact is, the results of a paramedical exam will directly impact their out-of-pocket cost for life insurance coverage. This is why it’s so important for you to educate your customers, help them understand how to best prepare for the paramedical exam and explain how the results can affect their policy.
Your first step is helping your potential customer understand what their paramedical exam will entail and how the results will affect their life insurance options. This is critical as many consumers are weary of medical exams and/or doctor’s office visits. By taking the time to educate your clients, you can help them relax and increase the likelihood that they will continue with the application process and complete an exam.
Explaining what a paramedical exam will include:
Walk them through the basics; explain that their exam will consist of a medical interview and a physical exam. During the interview they will be asked a series of health related questions. The personal history interview may be completed over the phone or at the time of the exam appointment. During the physical exam height, weight, blood pressure and pulse measurements will be collected. Take the time to review the underwriting guidelines, for the life insurance product(s) they’ve selected, and explain any other screenings that may be required such as: blood, urine and oral fluid analysis and/or an EKG.
Explaining how the results of a paramedical exam impact premiums and coverage:
Once you’ve explained what your client can expect, it’s time to explain how their test results will affect premiums and coverage. Help them to understand the implications of high blood pressure, nicotine use, high cholesterol, etc. By explaining each you’ll be setting the stage for the next topic, paramedical exam preparation.
Finally, preparing your potential customer for a paramedical exam is extremely important. Walk them through the following to ensure accurate results:
For the Medical Interview:
- Be prepared to provide a list of names and dosages of current medications
- Be prepared to provide a list of all doctors and clinics visited in the last five years, including addresses and phone numbers
- Be prepared to provide a list of all medical conditions or diagnoses, date of diagnoses, treatments, results of treatments and treating physician(s)
For the Physical Exam:
- Be prepared to provide a picture ID
- Have any required application information available and ready for the examiner
- Provide any history of problems associated with collecting a blood sample
- Avoid salty or high-cholesterol foods for 24 hours prior to exam
- Avoid strenuous exercise 12 hours prior to exam
- Avoid alcohol consumption for at least 12 hours prior to exam
- Fast for 4-8 hours prior to exam (or as advised)
- Get a solid night of sleep prior to exam day
- Avoid caffeine and nicotine consumption for at least 1 hour prior to exam
- Drink at least one glass of water one hour prior to exam
As a seasoned insurance professional, you may feel that much of this information is common knowledge. It is however important to keep in mind that many consumers will need some education around paramedical exams and the importance of accuracy. By walking your prospective clients through this tutorial you can help ease anxiety and improve the quality of test results.
Interested in more tips and tricks to help your customers through the life insurance examination process? Check out our applicant prep video on YouTube at http://youtu.be/sQXYoaxzbLY. We also encourage you to follow the ExamOne blog. Please share your comments and experiences below.