Next year looms with a host of innovations and important developments for the protection sector on the horizon, according to the marketing director of Squared Health.
Steve Casey - whose firm uses technology to help life and health insurers offer services from medical screening to GP consultations - is optimistic for 2017, despite 2016 reporting flat sales growth for protection polices.
Product innovation is one area 2017 will better this year, he said, marking the first time products will be launched specifically aimed at those with medical conditions such as obesity and diabetes.
According to Diabetes UK, more than four million people have the condition, and it is estimated over half a million people in the UK have undiagnosed type II diabetes.
Disease specific products are an “exciting development meeting real customer needs,” Mr Casey said.
“These products may very well be assisted with a managed care programme so that controlling the condition will mean a reduction in their insurance premiums.”
Mr Casey said he saw technology playing an ever increasing role to help monitor people’s conditions, with ‘nearables’ rather than ‘wearables’ the new buzzword, as the industry looks to understand how smart phones can monitor physiological movements.
“How this will impact life and health insurance is still unknown but marrying the technology with the customer will build long term mutually beneficial relationships,” he said.
He pointed to technology in the form of intelligent quotations (utlising additional information such as height and weight) being further developed following their introduction by Iress.
Also Solution Builder offered by iPipeline will give the intermediary greater choice as well as helping them meet their customers’ needs in a cost effective manner, he said.
“This is also true as new providers come to the market as well as existing providers redefining their strategies and broadening their propositions – watch this space.”