Take A Look At Yourself

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alert-button-print-965-x-917By: Roy Berger, MedjetAssist President/CEO

We host the strangest seminars at MedjetAssist.

When you organize a seminar, I thought you were supposed to be the teacher and the attendees the students. Not around here.

Late last month the second annual TAAP was held in our Birmingham, AL offices. TAAP (Travel Agent Advisory Panel), was comprised of six travel leaders from across the country. Our 2013 foray was our initial session and it worked so well that Yvonne Owen and Kemper Sarrett, who oversee the Medjet travel agency partner portfolio, decided to do it again.

This group was very strong on the Betsy’s: (pictured above l-r) Betsy Lind of Allure Travel in Denver, CO; Betsy Patton from Hurley Travel in Naples, FL; John Burgess from Preferred Travel also of Naples, FL; Kathy Bernstein from ProTravel International in Chicago, IL; Kristen Holt Burkhartt from Travel 100 Group in Northbrook, IL and Betsy Donley from Camelback Odyssey Travel in Phoenix, AZ. This is a strong and industry-seasoned group.

Of course, the initial goal was to educate the group on the Medjet product and process, to help them protect their clients when they travel. We were successful, but more importantly, we learned about their business model and how we can best ease some of the confusion between our air medical transport membership program and conventional travel insurance.

In the minds of our experts, what travel insurance promises and what Medjet actually does, blurs the lines. Our program is simple: we are membership, not insurance. The primary benefit of a Medjet membership is if you are sick or injured and hospitalized anywhere in the world (as long as you are over 150 miles from home) and will be admitted as an in-patient on the receiving end, then your transport benefit back to the hospital of your choice in your home country is in play. No claim forms, no deductibles, no paperwork to process. Simple and clean.

Travel insurance, especially when they are selling directly against Medjet, looks to murk up the water a bit. Some of them say they will get you home but usually that’s only after you have successfully completed a hospital stay in some foreign or far-away hospital and are discharged. Indeed, they may then help you make arrangements to come back home. Or, some claim they are a ‘hospital of choice’ program. Normally the problem with that catch-phrase is they give you a list of hospitals they’ll transport you to and you make the ‘choice’ where you want to complete your stay. Almost never is it your home hospital with doctors, family and friends at your side as the Medjet program provides. When we say choice, we mean your choice, not one off a buffet list!

Our agents also reported how good their business has been with clients jetting to every corner of the world. Based on our volume of distress calls, we were acutely aware.

The seminar could have gone on for a couple of days but by the time the eight hours had ended, our panel was better for the information we shared, and the many clarifications on what the Medjet program is and actually provides.

The flip side was more important to us. Many times you wind up in your little comfort zone and the true perception of who and what you actually may be becomes blinded. Sessions such as TAAP and the great array of experts peppering us with questions and comments turned the teacher into quasi-student.

It was a look at ourselves that money just can’t buy!

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It’s always tough to say adios to a friend, especially one who has been so very instrumental in business success.

We are going to miss Kay Hallman around these hallways. Kay, Medjet’s Director of Operations, may be a name you are familiar with from the signature on your membership packet letter or phoning to ask us a question.

Kay decided after over 40 years in the workforce, 30-plus in the telecommunications industry, and the last nine with Medjet, that enough was enough and it was time to pay Jerry some long overdue attention. She spoiled us; she was our day-to-day rock; if you didn’t know the answer to a question, Kay would find it out.  Most organizations need multiple Kay Hallman’s to succeed – we only needed one!

Thanks, Kay from all of us and all our members. One retirement tip: if you truly want to get away from it all, don’t answer the phone. It will be us, with just one more question!