In Fidelity Life's May Update on Apollo they released the following information:
Key changes made in this update include:
- Trauma Cover, Trauma Multi Cover and the Trauma component of Survivor's Income Cover rates increase effective 1st July 2016 for PlatinumPlus YRT and Mortgage Protector Plans.
- TPD extension rate reduction effective 1st July for PlatinumPlus YRT and Mortgage Protector for new and existing business.
- TPD extension rate reduction effective 1st July for PlatinumPlus Level Term plan for new business.
- Self-Employed and Established Proprietor employment status options have been renamed.
- Updated product documents, including updated application forms.
- Other bug fixes.
We will advise you of the scale of the rate changes when they have been reviewed.
Janine Starks writing in stuff.co.nz has this piece on exclusions. Starks advocates that consumers use advisers to pick their way through the policies. The article uses Quality Product Research resources to focus on the differences in exclusions between providers and to take particular aim at policies sold direct to customers. The general public often has difficulty comparing policy documents and understanding whether an exclusion is better or worse than another - even assuming that they take the time to read more than one policy document. Some good points are made - even if some of them may be uncomfortable for some insurers.
Susan Edmunds writes in goodreturns quoting research by NZIER based on Sovereign data that suggests a very high skew to top producing advisers in the industry and aims to estimate the impact of a possible cut in commission (by a quarter) on premiums at 6%. That is worth closer review as well. Link. Edmunds, also on, goodreturns tells us that Triplejump is restructuring. Link.
In case you missed it you can view the latest Quotemonster newsletter at this link.
Quality Product Research Limited has rated Southern Cross Life Insurance (underwritten by CIGNA) subscribers will be able to review the rating onwww.quotemonster.co.nz from the middle of next week. The product rates 91.6% in most situations (it depends on the sum insured) and has slightly more limited special events increase in cover provisions and slightly tougher exclusions than the highest rated products.
Life insurance remains the biggest selling in spite of the fact that relatively few people die during a working lifetime - although sales of living covers: income protection, health, and trauma have risen considerably. We expect that trend to continue, as social beliefs about prevalence and impact of the risk of early death change, and the real experience of non-fatal serious illness becomes accepted.
Another big area likely to change is motor vehicle insurance. It is possible that driving could be made a lot safer. What if there were 90% fewer car accidents? How would that affect vehicle insurance markets? Warren Buffett thinks that - although it is a long way in the future - it would logically reduce the need for insurance a lot. Although frequency is only one factor to consider in holding cover. Like life insurance, if there remains on a small frequency of catastrophic risk, then lots of people will still hold cover. It will be interesting to see.
The government is giving Pharmac an extra $39 million allowing funding for the melanoma drug Opdivo. We don’t know enough to say whether the specific drugs being selected by Pharmac are a better deal for patients compared to others. The strength of an independent drug buying agency is that we put experts in place to make those decisions. Of course, the strength of private medical insurance is that if you have it, and you disagree, you can still fund other treatments agreed between you and your medical advisers. Click here to watch a video from One News.
HFANZ's latest media release:
Ministry figures confirm waiting list pressure
District Health Board data released today has confirmed more and more people are waiting for elective surgery.
The Health Funds Association of New Zealand (HFANZ) says the latest specialist referral figures from the Ministry of Health confirm two key trends:
- The level of unmet need is increasing;
- The considerable additional investment in health is only keeping pace with the growth in demand.
HFANZ chief executive Roger Styles said the figures were consistent with the association’s own research, which showed up to 280,000 people were waiting for surgery.
“The numbers reported by DHBs are in line with our research,” he said. “More and more people need surgery, but our public system is stretching just to keep pace with growing demand, while less urgent cases have to wait longer and longer.
“What the DHB figures don’t show is the gap between referrals and surgery. The gap between needing and getting surgery is unmet need, and that’s growing.”
Mr Styles said the ministry’s assessment of unmet need was lower than HFANZ’s, but the trend was unmistakeable.
“More people are waiting for surgery and they are waiting longer,” he said.
Sovereign has launched a new loyalty programme, Health by Sovereign, which rewards people who are living a healthy lifestyle. Fitness tracking tools such as Fitbits, and Garmins are being used to track steps and other activities.
"The programme has been designed to motivate and support Kiwis on their health journey and help create a healthier nation as a whole. You don't have to make big changes to start earning Healthy Points. Just make a few healthy choices and watch your points grow. How far you go and how much you earn is up to you," says Sovereign's chief marketing and strategy officer Chris Lamers.
Click here to read more.
This infographic from easylifestyle.co.nz shows by gender where Kiwi's spend most of their time.
This article from Jon-Paul Hale at Willowgrove Consulting discusses some recent research conducted in Australia specifically about insurance literacy.
Click here to read the findings.