Article date: 17 March 2003
Norwich Union Healthcare is planning an expansion of itsSolutions private medical insurance product for companies, whichwas launched last year.
From May, the product will be made available to companies withbetween 50 and 249 employees – previously it was justtargeted to those with 50 to 99 – and will also come withNorwich Union Healthcare’s online Personal Health Managerservice.
Personal Health Manager allows people to assess their ownmedical symptoms and devise personalised health plans. It alsoprovides 24- hour access to GPs via the GP Helpline, plus aone-stop library of the latest medical information.
Solutions made a significant impact on launch last year.Customers welcomed it as a cost-effective way to buy group PMIbecause of the option to add modules to a comprehensive corepackage of benefits.
In this way, Solutions combined the pricing stability associatedwith small group products with the benefit flexibility of largegroup schemes.
Carolyn Derrington, head of business development for NorwichUnion Healthcare, believes the product will appeal to its newcustomer base. She said: “The success of Solutions convincedus that a comprehensive core product with the option to pick andchoose extras is what the corporate market demands.
“Now we’re responding to that clamour by broadeningits availability to larger companies. We’re confidentintermediaries will welcome the chance to use their expertise tohelp design the right package for their clients.”
As well as comprehensive cover for outpatient, day patient andinpatient diagnosis and treatment, the Core Cover benefits ofSolutions include:
- Home nursing (following eligible inpatient or day patienttreatment)
- Psychiatric outpatient treatment up to £1000
- GP Helpline – unlimited GP telephone consultations,available 24-hours-a-day
- Maternity cash benefit
- Stress Counselling Helpline
- Personal Health Manager
The Core Cover package can be added to by up to four AdditionalCover Options, providing a range of benefit enhancements. Theseare:
- Psychiatric cover (up to 28 or 45 days) for inpatient and daypatient treatment
- GP-referred services – including GP-referredradiology/pathology; GP-referred chiropody, podiatry andhomeopathy; complementary/alternative treatments includingosteopathy and acupuncture; specialist consultations and tests fornon-acute conditions
- Extended hospital list and a specific hospital list forScotland
- Optical and dental option – helps towards the cost ofoptical and routine dental expenses
For companies wishing to reduce costs by restricting cover,there are four cost containment options:
- Six week option – private inpatient or day patienttreatment if NHS waiting list is longer than six weeks
- Member excess – excess of either £50, £100 or £200(payable once per person per policy year)
- Selected benefit reduction – removes cover for lessessential extras
- Reduced outpatient cover
Companies with 250 employees or more can still benefit fromNorwich Union Healthcare’s Optimum Scheme, which is speciallydesigned to meet the needs of larger businesses. Optimum will alsobenefit from having Personal Health Manager added into its packageof core benefits.
Following today’s announcement, those in the 100-249 rangecurrently on Optimum will be offered terms to migrate to Solutionsas well as renewal terms on Optimum.
Meanwhile Norwich Union Healthcare will continue to offercompany PMI schemes for groups with 3 to 49 employees, and plan toinclude Personal Health Manager on all of these products within thenext few months.
For groups with 50-99 employees, the commission for Solutions is10% initial and 5% renewal, or 7% for both initial and renewal. Forgroups with 100-249 employees, the commission is 7% initial and 5%renewal, or 6% for both initial and renewal. The net commissionoptions are also available for both group sizes. Agency terms andapplication forms are available on request.
- Full details of standard cover and exclusions are given in thePolicy Wording, a specimen copy of which is available on request.These documents, for both Solutions and Optimum, have now beenwritten to include Common Definitions.
- Access to Personal Health Manager
- Norwich Union Healthcare has set up a one-month free trial*for intermediaries. If they want to try Personal Health Manager inApril, they can go to www.personalhealthmanager.co.uk, and registerwith the trial code 41F5E8521. (see Notes to Editors for Journalistaccess.)
For more information on Solutions, or for a free one-monthtrial* of Personal Health Manager intermediaries can call:
0845 300 1530 (intermediary sales north) or 02380 372277(intermediary sales south / national accounts)
For security and administration, calls to and from Norwich Unionmaybe monitored and, or recorded.
att Buchanan at QBO Bell Pottinger on 020 7861 2424
Notes to editors
- *The GP Helpline is not available as part of the trial.Personal Health Manager is strictly available for use in and byresidents of the UK, Isle of Man and Channel Islands only.
- Norwich Union Healthcare was founded in 1990 as the healthcarearm of Norwich Union and now provides a range of income protectionand private medical insurance products to around 750,000customers. It is one of the largest providers of income protectionand private medical insurance in the UK.
- Norwich Union Healthcare is a member of the General InsuranceStandards Council.
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