fireside-chat-with-rick-holliday

When should you start thinking about Medicare? Retirement?

Transcript of the conversation with with Thermon Rick Holliday I Medicare Broker

Alyssa Butler
Hello, everyone. Thank you for watching this live. We have are doing another Fireside Chat. Today with us is Thurman, Rick Holliday, a Medicare broker? Hello, Rick, how are you?

Thermon Rick Holliday
I am very well. So thank you so much. It’s me having me on. I appreciate it. And looking forward to our little chat.

Alyssa Butler
Yeah, we’re so happy to have you with us. So would you let’s start off by what do you do? kind of gave it away your title? And what are you working on today? Specifically?

Thermon Rick Holliday
Oh, wow. That’s a That’s a loaded question. So technically speaking, I’m a life and health licensed agent. With that allows me to carve out little specialty areas. And for me, there that I’ve carved out in the niche that I support is Medicare.

Thermon Rick Holliday
Medicare is obviously a federal program that’s derived from the Centers for Medicare and Medi Cal TV medical aid. It’s Medicare in California. And really what we do is we just help people with education, advice and enrollment into the Medicare plan. All right, I like to refer to it as retirement healthcare.

Thermon Rick Holliday
And a great example of that is today I was speaking with a woman earlier, and she had had some concerns and issues over her plan and what it was supposed to do and how the benefits work. And so I was giving her advice in that respect to kind of educate her on what was going on inside of her plan, so she can best maximize it.

Thermon Rick Holliday
And listen, honestly, it’s the most interesting thing, because last night, again, I was talking to another potential client. And his reference was, you know, I’ve been a medical doctor for 20 plus years, I’m retiring. I don’t have a first idea clue about Medicare, or what to do or how to do it, I was referred to you. So run me through this whole process. And that’s really where the game begins for me with almost every client that I had.

Alyssa Butler
Oh, that’s great. That sounds so interesting. So how did you how did you get here? How did you end up in this position?

Thermon Rick Holliday
Well, that’s another great spot. And actually, it’s kind of apropos, because six years ago, my mother passed today. And it’s kind of a joyous event for me, because, you know, obviously, she was able to go transition in her life, and she had a great life. She dealt with some battles of cancer and whatnot at the end of her life. But prior to that, you know, when we discovered this, you’d have that event, half of the cancer came about, you know, my sister and I were just trying to figure out how we need to help her well, we need to do the things we need to adjust for and plan for him the cost factors of finances, the Medicare, the the health care, whatever it needed to be.

Thermon Rick Holliday
And we were kind of scrambling, but knowing our my, our mothers, we should have realized she had all that lined up. She was a very meticulous person, she planned in advance, she did a lot of pre planning. And so I look to her as the outlier for most people do. You know, she’s the, you know, the yin to the Yang, she, she does it, most people don’t even think about it.

Thermon Rick Holliday
And so when she did pass, and we celebrated her life, at that point, I really was motivated to try to find an opportunity to give back and her name. And so I focused myself in the Medicare because I knew so many more people, even in her small group of friends had no idea about how to plan for this, you know, and watching her, they were like, oh, you know, it must be easy, and actually is a little more complicated than he would like it to be. It’s the government, obviously.

Thermon Rick Holliday
So, with that in mind, we were really able to educate people and advise people and from there, I just said, Okay, I’m all in and just ran with it and been doing it ever since. So this is my sixth year business, if you will, and going into what we usually call AP or annual enrollment period will be my seventh annual enrollment period. So excited for the year.

Alyssa Butler
Well, that’s great. That’s a really beautiful story. I’m glad that you can honor your mom in such a way like that. It sounds like she’d be very proud of you. So thank you, I you know, yeah, my parents are older and my grandmother is still alive. And luckily, they’re kind of outliers as well. So I’m very grateful they have that setup, but I know that like you said, that’s not the case. So the fact that you’re helping that part of our population is very near and dear to me as well. So thank you.

Alyssa Butler
No, and then I let’s take it way back way back then further than six years ago. What was your first job?

Thermon Rick Holliday
Oh, yeah, my first. It’s funny, um, I kind of grew up in and around Pasadena, California. Born in LA Compton area, my parents moved out to out to dnm when we were four or five years old, right around kindergarten age. And so you know, all my memories are Pasadena.

Thermon Rick Holliday
And Pasadena open the mall when malls were popular, you know, back in the mid to late 70s. And my first job was actually working at the May Company in the past in the mall. And my first position inside of make company I actually was one The gentleman who helped put together the mannequins, so I was putting together mannequins and stick them in the right spots.

Thermon Rick Holliday
And I guess most people would look at a mannequin mannequin is this just a cheap piece of plastic? These mannequins were so expensive, they actually imported them from Germany. They cost like $800 like a mannequin. At the time, you know, that’s probably equivalent to $2000-$3,000. And I was like, it’s just amazing. And they and they package them so tightly that when you open the box, this German air came out of there and sometimes would be too strong. And you’d be like, Oh, my God would choke.

Thermon Rick Holliday
But it was amazing. It was a great entry into you know, what would then obviously be my work life for forever, but first job was crazy.

Alyssa Butler
That sounds interesting. And not you know, since that job is long gone. Did you ever break a mannequin?

Thermon Rick Holliday
No, heck no, no, I think my time because you didn’t want to do that, because that could cost you your job. So it was really interesting.

Sammy Basu
Norman, your LinkedIn profile should say from mannequins to Medicare.

Thermon Rick Holliday
That’s great. No, that’s it’s time to rebrand a little bit. I’m actually interestingly enough doing some marketing up upgrades. Right now. I’m using a great marketing organization right now because chrysalis marketing, so she’s helping me Cindy, that is who runs it’s helping me set up and rebrand everything. So all my stuff will be brand new shortly. Keep an eye out for that probably in the next 30-40 days.

Alyssa Butler
Great. Congrats. That’s exciting.

Sammy Basu
Thurman, you mentioned like you educate people? A lot. So what’s like a quick, two minute summary of the education that you provide?

Thermon Rick Holliday
Kind of the, the initial pieces, there’s two things I really like to explain.

Thermon Rick Holliday
One is the relationship between Medicare and Social Security, because most people say, okay, Medicare, well, how do you get Medicare doesn’t come free in the mail? What do you do?

Thermon Rick Holliday
The answer is that Social Security and Medicare, I like to call them sister companies or sister departments, their sister departments under the Health and Human Services, as the parent. So Health and Human Services, one of the larger branches of the government in a departmental sense, and they have two children, Social Security and Medicare.

Thermon Rick Holliday
And so you have to speak to the Elvis, which is still security first, before you talk to Medicare.

Thermon Rick Holliday
Entry into Medicare comes from enrollment in a part “A”, “B” in Social Security. So you have to do that through Social Security links, you have to set up a social account. And then you just verify everything that you’re even eligible to enter into Medicare by way of payroll taxes, and all the things we have done historically, by working for at least 10 plus years, and being a citizen or registered legal resident here in the US.

Thermon Rick Holliday
Now, once that’s done, then now you get into all the minutiae and all the alphabet soup of it, because it’s Part A or B, Part D, or C is Medigap, Medicare Supplements, then there’s plans, “A”, “C”, in “K”, “L”, “G”, “F”, just to kind of get you started. From that, you put it all together like a big puzzle, and it comes out with a plan for you.

Thermon Rick Holliday
So I tell people, you know, to simplify it, all of us have either spent some time at McDonald’s, hopefully at least went through the the drive in or walked in there one time in your life, got a burger fries and a shake. I said, so think of it this way. Medicare has basic components. Part A is your hamburger. Part B are your fries, and Part D isn’t drugs or David is the shake. You have to have those things to have a meal. But you also have to have those things that have what is known as Original Medicare.

Thermon Rick Holliday
Now, Medicare, like McDonald’s one day said, You know what, there’s got to be an easier way. And so they came up with an idea called Part C. People also know it as Medicare Advantage. I say if you’ve ever been to McDonald’s, you bought a Happy Meal. What comes in a happy meal, burger, fries drink, and then they throw in a bunch of toys, right? That’s bad Medicare Advantage. That’s Part C. It’s your Part A, your Part B, your Part D and a bunch of toys thrown in on top. Typically, the toys can run the gamut. They are vision, dental, hearing. You also have things like transportation.

Thermon Rick Holliday
People often talk about how do you get a gym membership with this?

Thermon Rick Holliday
Yes, they have gym memberships in there. Some are amazing, you know, with what you can do within the places you can go. But all those varietals benefits are all thrown into that one bag and that’s Medicare Advantage.

Sammy Basu
And a couple of questions. One is McDonald’s drive thru and I don’t know what the time limit is, but like maybe a minute and you have your burger is that how fast it works with Medicare too.

Sammy Basu
Yeah. Yeah. So that and then the other question is like who is eligible for Medicare? Okay,

Thermon Rick Holliday
That’s a great question too. So Medicare primarily is eligibility rings in when you’re 65 years old. So once you hit the 65 year mark, you start but I often try to tell people, you want to plan for Medicare and your 64th year, if you wait to 65, some things happen. And you can kind of run into some issues.

Thermon Rick Holliday
And particularly if you’re working a job and trying to consider whether to retire, take benefits, or continue work and go on, you need to make some decisions on how you’re going to, and how it affects Medicare as you move through 65 years old, with Social Security, because there’s other age requirements there that you have to be concerned with; you know, you can work in Social Security, and affect your, your, your benefit by working through a 70. So oftentimes, people are being taught and coached now to try to work as long as they can, so they can maximize their Social Security benefit upon retirement.

Thermon Rick Holliday
And that also allows you to affect some of the benefits that come with Medicare, because it can increase some of the base costs, if you will, or if you have a need for some healthcare. Maybe Medicare is a better option than the health care plan you have with your employer group. But those things have to kind of be addressed as you look at it.

Thermon Rick Holliday
So you know, as you’re saying, I educate and I advise; the advisory role really comes into play when people are beyond 65. either have it or making considerations of it, because it can be challenging, understand what you need to do. And then if you’re supporting a family spouse, partner, or whatnot, you know, leaving an employer plan may not be the right option, because you may lose that benefit too.

Thermon Rick Holliday
So we have to really kind of, you know, measure and then cut, you know, measure twice, cut once type of scenario so as to not make any mistakes.

Sammy Basu
Awesome, awesome. Yeah, at least you have more questions right now

Alyssa Butler
Working with… I just have a couple more questions working with the older population. Do you have any cybersecurity concerns? Or how has that changed with so much tech being added into even the federal government?

Thermon Rick Holliday
Man, you know, and that’s why I wanted to do this with Sammy, when we met the first time I was like, oh, cybersecurity, we need top.

Thermon Rick Holliday
Medicare as a rule, in one reason I even got into it, as opposed to some of the other insurance vehicles that are out there is because there’s so many rules, and I kind of liked that for the protection aspect of it.

Thermon Rick Holliday
You know, Medicare will never ask you for information, personal information, because they have, they shouldn’t need to ask. So if you’re getting these phone calls, and people try to grift you what not to say, oh, you know, give us your Medicare information or whatnot, we can get to this plan information. I coach everyone I speak to, they’ll do it. There’s no need to they should have your information. If they don’t, it’s a scam.

Thermon Rick Holliday
The one of my clients is the hackers and the scammer. So the hackers in the scammers got into my program, again, the hackers in the scammers. She’s very much afraid of anything with respect to that activity happening.

Thermon Rick Holliday
And we see you know, the breach opportunities that can happen with some of the medical groups some of the carriers.

Thermon Rick Holliday
So there are huge concerns in the cybersecurity space with respect to Medicare because it’s healthcare. HIPAA rules, you know, Health Information Protection Act is are in place to give people just that protection against the loss of information, the passing of information.

Thermon Rick Holliday
I use secure emails and secure servers to gain information from people, because I’m asking them typically to provide me with their Medicare number, maybe their social security number, birthdate. All these personal you know, PII and pH I information that so delicate that you know, once aggregated together, boom…

Thermon Rick Holliday
The rules of Medicare also mandate that I don’t keep everything in one location. So if I have Medicare information, let’s say I have their Medicare number and their name, I’m to keep their birthdate maybe Social Security and another file location another spot.

Thermon Rick Holliday
So having firewalls, having a you know; do verifications having this more ways to protect, they run these tests. This is a scary thing.

Thermon Rick Holliday
Luckily, I’ve taken advice from you people like you, Sammy.

Thermon Rick Holliday
They run tests where they’ll the Centers for Medicare Medicaid will call you and asked to do an audit of your, your security. You have to have three click protection before you get to any files about your client base. Or you have it stored in a separate storage, you know, electronic storage. If it’s cloud based, you have to have multi tier protection, dual verification to get into it.

Thermon Rick Holliday
There’s just all these rules and they will literally access your computer, you know, through the you know, the technology is extensible to do that. And they’ll say Okay, let’s see where’s fast, and they’ll see if they can, you know, defeat your security within three clicks. And if they can, it’s not like you’re gonna get a fine, but it’s just a warning that you need to upgrade your security.

Thermon Rick Holliday
So cyber is for us is huge and the pandemic, double down and triple down, if you will, because in the past, there was a lot of paperwork where we would scan and report. But you know, being that we didn’t want to get that close to people in 2020 and 21 or 22, it became more evident that we could do things online. And so being able to transact business online became much more in vogue. And along with that, obviously, the risk factor just jumped through the roof. You know, people were just, you know, sending emails all over the place and doing all kinds of craziness.

Thermon Rick Holliday
So, yeah, it’s cyber is a huge concern for anyone that’s in the Medicare space or healthcare in general for that reason.

Sammy Basu
Yeah, I know, there was some breaches, even like, as recently, just last week that people were not able to get prescription medication.

Thermon Rick Holliday
Yeah, scary. Yeah. Cool.

Thermon Rick Holliday
What’s your feeling about like, the recent issues? I mean, you know, we’re talking like the big companies, a Walgreens CVS is multifaceted protections, and still being attacked constantly, you know, because there’s so much rich data.

Thermon Rick Holliday
So yeah, and we interact with them constantly. I mean, I’m always on the phone, you know, doing business with a client on the line trying to protect or gain access to information for them. And it’s always a huge concern, and having some ways to protect and really defend against that is so huge and important. It’s amazing.

Sammy Basu
Awesome. So you’re carrying a lot of social security in your pocketbook? Yes. You’re a prime target.

Sammy Basu
I went to an old age retirement home and to talk about elderly scams, because that’s like $3 billion plus, just last year. And there was a lady who was 107 years old, and she was the most cyber secure minded. She was like, anytime I get a call, I just hang up. Like, that’s the best don’t engage more, you are on the form more, you know, they have control over it.

Alyssa Butler
Every day. Exactly. Yeah, I think I feel like this, this older generation is so much more savvy than kind of what we think of as the older generation, because they grew up with, they’ve had computers for a long time, like my parents, you know, know all of that stuff. And yet still, I’m hyper vigilant with them. And I have to keep reminding them, there’s this new thing or that thing. So it’s difficult, but it’s great. You educate your clients, I think that’s so important. Yeah. I feel I’m sorry, I just wanted to end with, I’m sure you have so many for us, but if you would tell us a little nugget of wisdom that you have learned throughout your job talking to clients or just working in this system.

Thermon Rick Holliday
Yeah, you know, and I thought about that when we were putting together you know, what, what my advise and one thing that did come is that regardless of where you are in your life, regardless of you know how successful or or potentially successful you are, will be, the thing you want to do is you want to start as soon as you get your first job planning for your retirement. And with that in retirement health care, because once you get close, it’s literally too late. And people always ask me, Well, how early should I start thinking about Medicare? I’m like, your first job. You know, you can establish a health savings account. The cost of being in retirement are two, one you typically don’t have income, you have resources that you’re pulling and drawing down from, but then you also have your health and your physical health, unfortunately, starts to deteriorate, even the health needs of people, you know, start to deteriorate over time, which can lead to an issue and the only common denominator but between, you know, in those two situations is income or money, you know, means if you will, and not having the resources access to the resources is detrimental, you have to have that Medicare is a governmental program which you pay into, but it only can do so much having money. Having means can protect you even beyond that security wise to protection with your security, because if you have the means you can have better security. You know, it’s just another thing that we need to consider as early as humanly possible. Thank you.

Sammy Basu
Sorry, for the follow up question. Does Medicare provide any identity protection for the elderly? Is there some tie ups with?

Thermon Rick Holliday
So as a great question, there’s only there’s been one seed change, if you will, in Medicare, and from inception to now that was 1965. And that is that they used to put your full social security number on your Medicare card, and then have an identifier, alphabet, alphanumeric identifier, a one G two or something like that. So your full social security, your name, and then there’s a little identifier was on the Medicare card. At some point, they realize, you know, that’s not that good of an idea, you know, so let’s change that. So they’ve gone to what they call a Medicare beneficiary ID. And that is just a bunch of random numbers. So it’s irrelevant as to who can use it, but it still has your name on it. So we always tell people you want to guard your Medicare card, like you know, like you would a credit card. It still is valuable as some information on that you can glean from it. But that’s probably the biggest change that has happened. Technology or even a security wise in Medicare as a rule. All the other things are just standard, you know, don’t give information away. We’re not going to call you and ask you for anything because we already know it. You know, all those type of standard things. It’s you again, like you said Alyssa with with think you’re top of mind, but sometimes we forget because oh, I’m from Medicare, I need to know this, okay. Sure. You know, as a normal response, trying to be trustworthy, and, and and feeling like, Oh, he’s someone who’s concerned about me, because they sound all concerning. Oh, how are you? Sweetie? How can I help you today? You know, oh, I’m just calling up data information in your file. It makes it sound very homey. And people appreciate that homeliness but quite honestly, those are the ones you need to watch

Alyssa Butler
out for. Yeah, that’s sad, but it’s true. Yeah.

Thermon Rick Holliday
But it’s a great Medicare. I want to end with this Medicare is the best insurance you ever had. period in history. That is not even a fallacy of No, again, no hyperbole that is the Absolute Truth is the best insurance you’ll ever have. So for the 3500 more years, you need to go listen and did more use you said. When did you been able to take for yourself but yes, is the best insurance you can ever have. Well, I’m

Alyssa Butler
glad it’s on my mind now. Thank you so much, Rick, for sharing so much amazing information with us. I hope this has been helpful to everyone watching for themselves as well as maybe their parents. Thank you so much. Thank you, Sammy, as well to you for all the cybersecurity insights. Thank you guys for watching. All right, thank

Sammy Basu
you. Thank you. From mannequin to Medicare.

Alyssa Butler
Get T shirts made!