Guy Carpenter is actively developing and refining our view of how COVID-19 may impact the health and medical (re)insurance markets.
The COVID-19 pandemic is evolving quickly, with dramatic increases in cases and deaths across the vast majority of markets. Governments around the world are applying increasingly stringent contingency measures in an attempt to manage the inevitable pressure on the health system created by a perfect storm of reducing capacity of front-line staff, high global demand for equipment and materials and an exponential increase in patients, according to Oliver Wyman Insurance Partner Fady Khayatt and Health and Life Sciences Principal Sourav Choudhury. Guy Carpenter is an affiliate of Oliver Wyman.
While the primary front-line response with regards to both testing and treatment in almost all markets has been led and coordinated by the public health systems, the scale of the challenges is increasingly leading to the private sector being asked to provide capacity. In the more affected markets this has led to governments mandating that all elective surgery (both public and private) be canceled in order to free up beds for the ongoing emergency.
There is a great deal of uncertainty for the exact near-term and long-term implications for the health insurance sector and insurers are today facing immediate challenges to ensure positive outcomes for their customers, their communities and their staff. Despite these pressures and uncertainties, inaction and a lack of preparation is the worst response. Oliver Wyman has outlined four key responses that health insurers should engage with as the crisis evolves to get out in front of the market:
1. Proactively engage with policyholders – don’t hide, do effectively communicate and create new positive experiences
2. Consider the potential for longer-term shifts in customer behavior
3. Leverage big data to get insights on claims management post crisis
4. Prepare for the second order implications on your provider network relationships
Guy Carpenter’s Healthcare & Life Specialty Practice brings knowledge and advanced analytics together, allowing clients to stretch their risk dollars as far as possible and present their strategy in an auditable framework to internal governance and stakeholders.