senioreducatorslogo I found out about SeniorEducators during a trip to the bay area last year. They are a startup trying to help seniors make the most out of their medicare benefits.

Quick Medicare tutorial: It consists of Part A, B, C and D. None pays for all of a covered person’s medical costs. The program contains premiums, deductibles and coinsurance, which the covered individual must pay out-of-pocket. After 1997, beneficiaries were given the option to receive benefits through private health insurance plans, instead of original Medicare plan (Parts A and B). That’s why today Medicare insurance market is a complex landscape, filled with lots of insurance companies offering thousands of plan options.

It’s hard to understand it all, let alone find one that fits your health need as well as budget. There is competition, for sure-small (ehealthinsurance, healthinsurancefinders, medigap ) and big (United, Aetna, Cigna..). But I didn’t find many that were only focused on Medicare- most seemed like one-stop shops for all health insurance needs, trying to target everyone.

Notably, this consumer segment is predictably technology-averse with significant communication need. Which is probably why all SeniorEducator online content is in simple language with easy navigation, and they use toll-free numbers to connect with the customers. It’s a good strategy, and it’ll be interesting to see how much traction they can get in a mature market with big entrenched players.

March 2010 Update: Senior Educators is acquired by Hewitt Associates, a publicly-traded global human resources consulting and outsourcing company. Read press release here.