Until now, many of the UK’s four million plus diabetes suffers have found obtaining affordable individual life insurance difficult. So, Royal London has launched a simple life insurance product designed to offer speedy decisions rather than meaningless quotes that the customer only finds out they can’t get after weeks of ‘underwriting’. The key elements of the product are:
A quick and simple application process for people with Type I or Type II diabetes.
Immediate cover if accepted.
Cover is available even to those with high HbA1c (glycated haemoglobin) levels.
If the diabetes is well managed and Royal London is sent the results of an annual HbA1c blood test results, premiums can go down in future years. Even if it doesn’t, the premium will not go up, although discounts can be lost.
Customers get access to the Helping Hand service, with access to a specialist diabetes nurse for support and advice.
Royal London uses the Kalibre insurtech platform, applying an innovative risk assessment approach, supported by continuous underwriting. Royal London says the platform revolutionises buying life insurance for people with diabetes by improving the time taken to accept an application from weeks to less than an hour. The product is initially only available from a small number of adviser firms but there are plans to launch to the wider market later this year.
Over time, customers can earn a premium discount up to 40% if they are able to manage their diabetes by simply sharing an annual HbA1c test result (the test effectively provides an average rather than ‘snapshot’ figure and so can’t be manipulated easily). Premiums are guaranteed never to rise higher than the starting premium to give customers certainty that they will be able to maintain their cover.
Comment: Royal London has become a pioneer of the dynamic underwriting approach and its new plan targets diabetics, whether Type I or the more common (and often lifestyle driven) Type II diabetes.
The upsides are considerable – a fast underwriting decision, cover even for those with high HbA1c levels and the prospect of reduced premiums in future years if the HbA1c figure can be kept within target. Even for those who can’t achieve that, the premium is guaranteed not to rise above the starting point.
Diabetics have been discriminated against in the past by insurers, so it is good to see an insurer that is actively targeting a large and rising population. From a societal as well as individual viewpoint, it must be a good thing to incentivise people to manage their diabetes as well as possible too.
If your client is diabetic, this plan is well worth considering.
Plus points: Simple life cover for diabetics that offers a much better process than standard; Over 4m people have diabetes so the market is significant; Opportunity to pay lower premiums in future just by sharing HbA1c results; Premium guaranteed not to rise above initial starting premium.
Not so plus points: Not all diabetics will be able to get affordable cover; Some may not be able to manage their HbA1c levels well.
Rating (max 10): Innovation: 9. Overall: 8.5. Gold
Tags: Term; Royal London