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Disability risk underwriting

Safeguarding employers and disability schemes

Healthcare costs are rising – and so are staff members’ demands for healthcare benefits. But the reality is that having a healthy workforce is just as important to an employer as having healthcare benefits are to an employee. The Soma Initiative’s disability risk underwriting and consulting service is there to safeguard the interests of both employers and disability schemes, by determining disability risk in the period between employment and admission to the fund.

In most industries at present, across the South African economy, organisations insure their staff against death and disability. In respect of disability, the problem that arises is the increasing number of claims related to “non-objective” medical conditions such as Psychiatric conditions and Back ailments with associated pain. In respect of death claims, HiV/Aids represents significant risk to any Fund.

Pre-rating the risk for the fund’s trustees

The issue is this: when companies insure employees, they either have to pick up the risk of pre-existing conditions or have to quantify the risk so as to adjust either premium or benefit levels. While traditional insurers apply a ‘scheme-free limit’ and only underwrite above a certain salary band, companies are starting to secure increased retirement benefits by self-insuring and managing death and disability risk more accurately. In the context of self-insured funds Soma ascertains insurable risk determining appropriate premium contributions, or alternatively, benefit limitations and/or exclusions. To this end Soma designs specific health risk assessment protocols thereby profiling death and disability risk, enabling accurate premium determination and maximum employee benefits, while striving to maximize retirement benefits. Pro-active risk determination is far more cost effective than retrospective claims evaluation in safe-guarding retirement assets.

“It is best to contact Soma before you’re vulnerable. It is never too late to seek out risk benefit consulting or disability underwriting.” – Dr Doug Baard, MD

 

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