The most important decision you make this year may be what health care plan to purchase. Yet it can be challenging to understand insurance jargon, available options and even how to use a health care plan.


To help consumers better understand and get the most out of their health insurance, Assurant Health is undertaking a major effort to provide a more positive customer experience. One way they're accomplishing this is by completely updating the materials customers receive once they buy a plan.

Assurant Health now provides its Assurant Health AccessSM customers with a Quick Start Guide that uses everyday language and is sent within 48 hours of acceptance. It's designed to give customers the information they need to start using their plan, including newly designed ID cards. There's also a new welcome packet that provides a simple, personalized overview of their plan.

"We started with our customer's perspective and realized we were making simple steps difficult to understand. We knew we needed to create easy-to-understand materials to help us keep customer care at the heart of everything we do," said Heidi Hanstein, vice president of Assurant Health Access. "We want consumers to feel confident about Assurant Health and their health care plan. We want them to know what they bought, and we want them to know how to get the most out of their benefits."

Hanstein explained that after analyzing the end-to-end customer experience, Assurant Health learned the amount and type of information customers need at specific times. For instance, immediately after purchasing a health care plan, many new customers want to find a doctor and fill a prescription. Assurant Health's Welcome Kit helps them do that. And Assurant Health customer service representatives take the extra step of calling customers to follow up after the first claim is filed to discuss billing details and covered expenses.

"From our welcome letter to our follow-up calls, we are reaching out to our customers to let them know we are here for them and provide them with the best customer experience possible," she said. "It is exciting to see how this approach is helping our customers."

A winning combination

Assurant Health's efforts to adopt plain language and present information in an easy-to-understand format recently earned two ClearMark Awards from The Center for Plain Language. The center recognized Assurant Health for their Assurant Health Access "customer-centric" communications materials. Since 2010, The Center for Plain Language has been recognizing government and business with ClearMark Awards - an award given to organizations that exemplify the best use of clear and concise communications in documents and websites.