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Insurance

Published on: July 27, 2020, 12:07 a.m.
Critical connect
  • Asthana: expecting good response

By Lancelot Joseph. Executive Editor, Business India

With rising healthcare costs and the growing vulnerability to critical illnesses, having a comprehensive insurance protection is a necessity today. The cost of treating life-threatening diseases is much higher compared to the cost of treating common ailments,” says Roopam Asthana, CEO & whole time director, Liberty General Insurance Ltd (LGIL), a joint venture between Liberty Citystate Holdings PTE Ltd – a group company of Liberty Mutual Insurance group, a diversified global insurer with over 900 offices across the world, headquartered in the US, Enam Securities, and DP Jindal group.

“Keeping this in mind, we have launched ‘Critical Connect’ health insurance policy which is another step towards our endeavour to contribute to the financial well-being of our customers. The policy provides financial support and wealth protection to our customers by offering a lump-sum amount on the diagnosis of a critical illness which may require specialised treatment for an extended period of time,” adds Asthana. He was the founding employee of the company and has played a pivotal role in the formation of the joint venture, along with the licensing of the company. With an experience that spans over 25 years, he has worked as CEO, SBI Cards and Payment Services Pvt. Ltd. and GE Capital Business Process Management Services Pvt. Ltd.

LGIL commenced operations in 2013 with the aim to provide comprehensive retail, commercial and industrial insurance solutions. Today, the company has an employee strength of 1,100 plus with presence across over 100 locations in India. Its partner network consists of about 5,100 hospitals and more than 4,300 auto service centres. The company offers health and personal accident insurance, car and two-wheeler insurance, employee compensation insurance, commercial insurance, fire and engineering insurance, marine insurance and other miscellaneous insurance products in India.

In a bid to expand its health insurance product portfolio and provide insurance cover for up to 60 critical illnesses (CIs) such as heart or major organ transplant, kidney failure, cancer, brain surgery, CIs related to HIV/AIDS, head trauma, blindness, and multiple sclerosis among others, LGIL launched ‘Critical Connect’ at a virtual product launch ceremony.

“This health insurance policy will enable customers to manage most of the expenses arising due to critical illnesses. Unlike a regular health insurance policy, where the customer makes a claim based on the actual expenses incurred on hospitalisation, the Critical Connect health insurance policy will pay a lump-sum amount to the customer on the diagnosis of listed critical illness covered under this policy,” says Asthana.

The product pays a lump-sum amount to the policyholder instead of actual expenses spent on treatment, and the liberty or discretion of utilising that amount lies completely with the policyholder such as, opting for treatment within India or abroad, appropriately plan for his increased daily living expenses, utilities, child education, loss of income etc. “The wide range of sum insured from Rs1 lakh to Rs1 crore in multiples of Rs1 lakh and up to a tenure of three years offers a better deal to the customer. It offers in-house claims settlement without any third party involvement. Further, the Health 3600 Wellness programme motivates for healthy lifestyle and rewards the customers too.

The Wellness programme is an eternal part of CIs and comes as an inbuilt feature. The optional cover ‘30 days survival period waiver’ and ‘Loan Protector’ completes the entire package for the customer taking care his comprehensive insurance needs. Moreover, the important differentiator of the product is that, it offers ‘continuation of the policy even after payment of 100 per cent of the sum insured’ unlike the usual benefit based policies. Lastly, it offers disease specific bundles to select any or all such as heart, brain, cancer and renoliv protect.”

The other benefits under the Critical Connect policy include a second medical opinion where Liberty will arrange and pay for a second opinion through its panel of doctors. Secondly, the customer will be entitled to a health check-up every two years. “Lastly, under Health 3600, while the customers would be able to avail discounts on outpatient consultations, pharmaceuticals, and diagnostic tests through Liberty’s empanelled, network providers, they would also be able to get integrated healthcare services such as health risk assessment, disease management, dedicated health coach, and wellness rewards under wellness programmes without any additional charges,” sums up Asthana.

The product is just launched and considering the initial feedback from the market, “we are anticipating a good response in its first year itself. While Covid-19 has disrupted the physical distribution channels to some extent, we expect to see good traction due to the uniqueness of the product features and a reasonable premium rate which can be paid in instalments,” he claims.

Finally, it’s an exclusive product offering coverage for CIs only. “While this product doesn’t cover Covid, we have other products that provide coverage for Covid-19 related hospitalisations”.

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