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Increase in Australian mental health disability claims, and more daily news

The Australian FSC reported that the number of mental health disability claims made in Australia has increased by over 50% in the past five years. A KPMG report showed that from 2013 to 2018 mental health disability claims increased by 53%, placing it in the top three disability claims.

“Mental health disability claims have soared more than 50 per cent over the past five years, putting strain on an industry that struggled to make any money at all in 2019, a new report commissioned by the Financial Services Council shows.

The report, compiled by KPMG, finds that over the five years to 2018, mental health claims costs rose 53 per cent, making it the third most common category of disability claim, behind accident and musculoskeletal, and ahead of cancer. For men, mental health-related claims were 125 per cent higher than the 2013 figure.”

Regardless of mental health exclusions being in place, mental health claims have increased. KPMG actuarial partner Briallen Cummings has highlighted that the increase is actually just the same people claiming for longer periods of time. Cummings has suggested that the increased number and duration of mental health claims could be a result of the shift in societal perceptions of mental health illnesses.

“The meteoric rise in mental health claims comes despite a years-long effort by major life insurers to introduce preventative mental health measures and programs aimed at getting people back into work.

KPMG actuarial partner Briallen Cummings said there was not actually an increase in the number of claims. Rather, the surging mental health claims bill was a result of the same number of people claiming for longer.

She said this could reflect a profound shift in public attitudes that had seen the stigma around mental health disappear. She said this had caused a "a real change in behaviour".” Click here to read more

In other news:

FSC: Confirmed speakers for Generations Conference are:

  • Rob Everett, FMA CEO
  • Glenys Talivai, Public Trust CEO
  • Mike Woodbury, Chapman Tripp partner
  • Jane Wrightson, CFFC Retirement Commissioner
  • Ryan Bessemer, Trustees Executors CEO
  • Alexia Hilbertidou, GirlBoss founder

Katrina Shanks: a financial adviser gets a taste of her own medicine

FSC: three weeks left for FSC 2020 Awards nominations

Christchurch dad's tumour surgery struggle after arrival of newborn twins

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