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Legal and regulatory update for the life and health insurance sector

30 March 2022 – The third reading was completed in Parliament for the Commerce Amendment Bill.

https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/bills-and-laws/bills-proposed-laws/document/BILL_108304/commerce-amendment-bill

https://www.mbie.govt.nz/about/news/stronger-regulation-to-promote-competition-passes-third-reading/

31 March 2022 – RBNZ released a three-part analytical note that analyses the past experiences of different ethnicities, age groups, sexes, and regions during past recessions in New Zealand. https://www.rbnz.govt.nz/news/2022/03/maori-pasifika-young-people-and-small-regions-hardest-hit-in-job-downturns

31 March 2022 – NZ Police Financial Intelligence Unit released its February 2022 “Suspicious Activity Report”. https://www.police.govt.nz/advice-services/businesses-and-organisations/nz-financial-intelligence-unit-fiu/fiu-reports


nib's new non-PHARMAC new Plus add-on, and more daily news

nib has announced that members will be able to add the non-PHARMAC new Plus add-on when buying nib Hospital cover. This means members will have access to Medsafe-approved drugs not funded by PHARMAC. The add-on will also cover the cost of administering the drugs.

"Do you know the true cost of non-PHARMAC drugs?

Drugs are expensive. There’s nearly 1,000 of them that get funded by the government in New Zealand, which is great. But the reality is we have the worst access to funded modern drugs out of 20 OECD countries. 

This is because PHARMAC, the government agency who decide what drugs are funded, can only approve a selection of new treatment options each year. That means some effective drugs for some really serious conditions just don’t make the list.

For people with a range of diseases, from bowel cancer to Crohn’s disease, there are effective treatment options available that they can’t access. Because when they’re not subsidised, they can be simply too expensive for some people.

 

Introducing our non-PHARMAC Plus add-on

To ease the burden, we’ve launched our new non-PHARMAC Plus add-on option which you can add when you buy nib Hospital cover.

non-PHARMAC Plus gives you access to many Medsafe-approved drugs not funded by PHARMAC. It also covers the costs of administering the drugs. That makes treatment for cancer and other serious conditions more accessible, in either a private hospital or at home.

Add non-PHARMAC cover from $1.24 per week

Our Hospital plans start from $11.07 (3) weekly and are designed to help cover the big health costs like surgery or cancer treatment, giving you fast access to private healthcare. You can add non-PHARMAC Plus to our Hospital plans from just $1.24 per week (2).

You can choose the level of cover that’s right for you. The cover level is the maximum amount we’ll pay towards your eligible claims each policy year for each member covered."

In other news

Russell’s piece on Goodreturns: Govt's proposed income insurance scheme may hurt insurers

From Stuff: Seven things you can do in your 60s to enjoy a better life for longer

FMA: Manager, Financial Advice role being advertised


Partners Life explain new MUM feature, and more daily news

Recently Partners Life held webinars explaining the features of the new Client Access to Personal Statement feature on the online underwriting platform MUM. For future reference, Partners Life has published a video explaining the new functionality and demonstrating how it works.

“Thank you to everyone who gave up their valuable time to attend the webinars introducing our new Client Access to Personal Statement (CAPS) feature for our Online Application - MUM (My Underwriting Manager).

This new functionality allows you to send your clients a unique, secure link to complete their personal statement in their own time, on their own device. The ability for your clients to pre-complete their underwriting disclosures prior to your meeting can save time at the kitchen table and may reduce the need for multiple client visits.

For advisers who are dealing with clients in a different geographical location, this assists you in providing clients access so that they can complete their own personal statement, enabling a smoother end-to-end advice and application process.

During the process you can view how your clients are progressing with completing their personal statements, and you can also jump in at any stage should they need assistance.

If you were unable to attend the Webinar session and would like more information and a demonstration on how it works, please click on the link

In other news

Fidelity Life: Tahi policy migration happened on the weekend of 26/27 March 2022

Fidelity Life: International Women’s Day 2022

International Women's Day 2022 from Fidelity Life on Vimeo.


Quality Product Research: Medical - when the selected excess doesn't match the plan excess

Recently we have been challenged by several advisers on how we can rate a benefit where an insurer applies an excess, which is lower than the plans selected excess. 

For example, we refer to the Major Diagnostic wording in Partners Life Private Medical Cover. A client may decide to select a $2,000 excess to reduce cost or ensure coverage for high-cost treatments. However, the excess applied for claims under this benefit will either be nil (if the client has selected a nil excess) or $250. In comparison, the client may not even be eligible to make this claim in this scenario with a competing insurer or in some cases be surprised that an excess is required for a claim to be accepted. This is a significant and valuable difference that we are interested in showing in our Research.  

We would love to hear your insights and how you think we could incorporate this into our Research rating. A while ago we added a sub-item “Diagnostics excess is not limited but matches plan excess” which you are able to see in your Detailed Head-to-Head comparison, but we do need a new and innovative way to show the value of this so welcome any feedback you are willing to offer.

Please email your ideas to researcher@qpresearch.co.nz


Legal and regulatory update for the life and health insurance sector

25 March 2022 – Commission for Financial Capability announced that Sorted in Schools had launched a new learning taxation module in partnership with the Inland Revenue. https://retirement.govt.nz/news/latest-news/building-financial-capacity-for-students-understanding-tax/

25 March 2022 – Financial Services Council released a Financial Advice Law Guide 2022 for Financial Advisers. https://blog.fsc.org.nz/financial-advice-law-guide?hsLang=en


You're invited to our next Advicemonster demonstration!

Great news! 

Our highly anticipated Advicemonster training session has been scheduled for Wednesday, 30 March 2022 11:30 am-12:30 pm

Come join us to learn more about about how Advicemonster can help you give great advice to your clients! 

If you're interested in joining this session please feel free to email us on info@quotemonster.co.nz and we will send through further details. 

Happy Crunching!


Our YouTube channel is now live!

Our YouTube channel is now live and contains the entire series of Advicemonster training sessions. 

Click the button below to check it out and don’t forget to share the love by subscribing, sharing and liking our content as we will be adding more videos once our new website is live. 

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If you have a specific video you’d like us to record or any general feedback please feel free to email us on info@quotemonster.co.nz 


Legal and regulatory review for the life and health insurance industry

 

22 March 2022 - The International Organisation of Pension Supervisors launched its guide titled, 'Good Practices for designing, presenting and supervising pension projections'. http://www.iopsweb.org/iops-good-practices-for-designing-presenting-and-supervising-pension-projections-2022.htm

24 March 2022 – RBNZ advised of the launch of a public material breach register to aid transparency of compliance with key bank prudential requirements. https://www.rbnz.govt.nz/news/2022/03/rbnz-launches-material-breach-register


Health services failures criticised

The mental health foundation has criticised the health service for failures which in cases related to five homicides. Link. Tara Shaskey of the New Zealand Herald reports:

"Heartbreaking" and "absolutely avoidable".

Those are the words an unmistakably frustrated Shaun Robinson, Mental Health Foundation chief executive, used to describe five unconnected but equally tragic homicides by five mentally-ill people.

"What makes me most angry is that this is total system failure in terms of responding to people's mental health needs," Robinson told Open Justice.

For more, read the whole article.