New Delhi: ICICI Lombard General Insurance, India’s leading private sector non-life insurance company has partnered with Plum, India’s fastest growing employee health insurance startup, to re-imagine and co-create India’s first technologically backed group health insurance products. With the use of latest technologies, ICICI Lombard and Plum intend to solve four major areas of group health insurance – real time pricing, onboarding, policy management and claims.
The penetration of health insurance across India is abysmally low, with 0.29% of GDP being spent on the health sector. Not surprisingly, India witnesses one of the highest out-of-pocket expenditures. There is an enormous unmet demand for healthcare, with only 2% of the total healthcare expenditure being currently covered by insurance providers. Several initiatives introduced by the Indian government like Ayushman Bharat, IRDAI’s Sandbox and National Health Stack are initiatives in the right direction. When it comes to the group health insurance market, which covers about 15% of the overall insured population and witnesses 25% year over year growth, it has been largely following the status quo. In light of this, this partnership between ICICI Lombard and Plum is aimed at benefiting the group insurance market thereby increasing insurance coverage in this sphere.
The partnership between the two companies will help in the following ways.
Real time pricing
It currently takes anywhere between five days to a couple of weeks for a company to receive a price estimate for a group health insurance policy. This happens due to a largely manual process of going through the data set and assessing the risk. ICICI Lombard and Plum in close collaboration, have built automated processes around data cleaning, validation, fraud detection, and underwriting thereby reducing the time taken to receive price estimates to a few minutes.
Companies can now visit www.plumhq.com, answer a few simple questions about their team, and get a price estimate in real time. From thereon, the company can upload the data on the portal, make the payment, and activate the policy instantly.
This will reduce the overall time from an average of a month to less than an hour.
Another challenge when it comes to employee health insurance is that most employees largely remain unaware of the policy and the benefits that it entails. A company invests a substantial budget on wellness of their employees, however, if the employees aren’t able to use it, the efforts go in vain. ICICI Lombard and Plum have worked together to ensure that employees are onboarded instantly as soon as the group policy is purchased. Employees are taken through a digital onboarding process wherein they understand their insurance benefits in simple English (rather than a long legal document).
The third big challenge that organizations face is managing the employees that are part of the insurance. In fast growing organizations, employees are recruited almost on a daily basis. ICICI Lombard and Plum have built a real-time endorsement product that allows organizations to activate the health insurance of employees as soon as they join the company. Employees don’t have to wait for weeks to get a health ID card anymore.
Lastly, providing a seamless claims experience is one of the most crucial elements of any insurance. The two companies are now building an online claims submission tool for employees along with a real time tracking system.
Each of the above four products are industry-first for corporates. The goal is to offer employers and employees flexibility, transparent pricing, and exceptional healthcare experience.
ICICI Lombard and Plum together have been able to onboard more than 100 companies within the first six months of launch. These companies include startups like Fampay, StayAbode, Posist, Jiny, Revv, Swiflearn, The Label Life, and GrowFit. In addition to that, MNCs like Twilio, Instawork and Livongo, and companies like Lambda Group, Sunidhi Group, Rosmerta Group have also been onboarded.
On the partnership, Alok Agarwal, Executive Director, ICICI Lombard General Insurance stated, “Group Health Insurance is a pivotal part of any organization’s employee benefits framework. In these unprecedented times, with the pandemic far from over, this initiative will not only help us safeguard our group insurance clients but will also ensure that each and every covered individual is prepared to restart the new normal, the right way. Additionally, this program will act as a facilitator towards the government’s efforts to increase the overall health insurance penetration in the country.”
Abhishek Poddar, co-founder & CEO of Plum added, “The group insurance health market in India is projected to grow to INR 100,000 crores by 2025, and will see the rise of innovative insurance products not available in advanced markets. With partners like ICICI Lombard, we hope to provide 700 million people with employer-sponsored insurance and become the de facto health insurance platform for one million corporates in India,”. ICICI Lombard has always been a pioneer in introducing revolutionary technologically inclined product solutions for its customers. This strategic partnership strengthens this commitment of the insurer to its people and its commitment to individual well-being above all.