MCUSA Consulting in Bellingham identified a unique niche market in a hot-topic sector (Medicare) that became an immediate hit.
The company’s mission calls for helping healthcare providers reach out to Medicare beneficiaries while staying compliant with government regulations – and ultimately preserving all important doctor and hospital relationships with patients.
“One of our biggest challenges, because no one else is doing what we do, is we help the hospitals and doctors communicate with their Medicare patients,” Kerri Lenderman said. She’s one of two co-founders, along with Paul Gauthier, and she serves locally as the managing partner.
Lenderman and Paul Gauthier launched in 2013, putting together their backgrounds in the health insurance industry. Gauthier also has experience in hospital administration. MCUSA – with the MC standing for Medicare and operating nationally as a sister company to MedicareCompareUSA – works largely by telephone with a staff of seven in Bellingham and two workers outside of Whatcom County.
The employees design communication programs, and develop turnkey, targeted-marketing campaigns that specialize in people aging into Medicare benefits. MCUSA also provides data analytics to healthcare providers. The services grossed more than $200,000 in 2015.
These organizations “are starting to realize how our influence can really help them fine-tune their Medicare strategy and communicating with their Medicare patients,” Lenderman said, describing how
healthcare providers need a business partner who protects the patient/provider relationship. “We help doctors and hospitals communicate what insurance plans they accept and do not accept.”
Both the MCUSA Consulting and MedicareCompare grew out of the rapidly-changing healthcare industry by serving Medicare patients within a system where the pay providers received, but didn’t cover the operating costs of a new Medicare patient.
Medicare federal and state regulations prohibit healthcare providers from advising or steering patients toward insurance. In the process Lenderman and Gauthier discovered that many providers need help with fine-tuning their Medicare strategies. “Because insurance agencies are highly regulated and limited in the types of services offered, we started MCUSA Consulting to give strategic support to provider clients,” Lenderman said.
The company’s markets align with their providers’ service areas in western Washington; Austin and San Antonio, Texas; Chicago, and parts of Kansas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Georgia, North Carolina, Florida, Michigan, and Missouri.
Lenderman predicted that the need for their services will continue to increase as healthcare providers and insurers “…cope to survive in an ever-limited resource of healthcare dollars…. MCUSA Consulting will serve as a bridge for patients and their healthcare providers wherever and whenever possible.”
Story by Mary Louise Van Dyke