In what is understood to be an industry first, the $1 billion Prime Super has begun providing trauma insurance to members as an additional product alongside default group cover.

Lachlan Baird, chief executive officer of Prime, said trauma was an appropriate product to be sold by superannuation funds given that improved medical treatments had increased the prospects of recovery for people who experience severe accidents, injuries or disease.

“Now, often, when we become really sick, we recover,” Baird said. “There’s that part of recovery where trauma cover comes in.”

“You often need modifications to your house to make it suitable for your condition.”

Prime began offering the product, which is not part of its default offering, through MetLife in April.

The fund selected a segment of its membership that it judged would benefit from trauma cover, and contacted the members directly by mail and telephone to introduce the offering.

These members were typically higher income earners, and were within an age range in which people usually raise a family and have large financial commitments, such as mortgage and other debts.

Eligible members in Victoria and

Queensland were excluded due to the bushfires and floods that devastated parts of both state earlier in the year.

Of the 9,000 people contacted, 612 signed up to trauma cover.

The majority of Prime Super members work in the primary industries and allied trades, such as horticulture and hardware.