With MA open enrollment on the horizon, Walmart formally launches insurance brokerage

Walmart is formally launching its new insurance brokerage ahead of Medicare open enrollment kicking off next week.

Walmart Insurance Services is licensed in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, according to a blog post from the retail giant, and will offer Part D, Medicare Advantage and Medicare supplement plans from a slew of insurers including UnitedHealthcare, Humana, Anthem and WellCare Health Plans, which is now a subsidiary of Centene Corporation.

It will also include plans from Amerigroup, Simply Health, Clover Health and Arkansas Blue Cross and Blue Shield. Walmart will also be teaming up with Clover to offer its own co-branded MA plans.

Licensed Walmart insurance agents will be available to assist members in selecting Medicare coverage beginning with the upcoming open enrollment period for the 2021 plan year, which starts on Oct. 15.

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“We want customers to feel confident in selecting a Medicare plan that best fits their needs, budget and lifestyle,” David Sullivan, general manager of Walmart Insurance Services, said in a statement. “And we want to be a trusted partner on their health care journey. Helping customers select the right Medicare insurance plan to meet their needs aligns with Walmart’s mission of helping people save money and live better.”

Just one in 10 Medicare beneficiaries have signed up for the plan that will save them the most on out-of-pocket costs, Sullivan said. Walmart is aiming to simplify the often confusing and cumbersome process of enrollment, according to the blog post.

Walmart quietly unveiled the insurance brokerage earlier this year when it posted job listings for insurance agents based in the Dallas-Fort Worth market.

These steps into the insurance market are part of retailer's larger push into the healthcare market, which centers around its growing number of Walmart Health clinics. These clinics, which are attached to traditional Walmart stores, offer a slew of health services for a flat fee to both insured and uninsured patients.

Walmart intends to have at least 22 clinics across Georgia, Florida, Arkansas and Illinois open by the end of 2021.