The evolution of rehabilitation in group insurance

AIA Australia

By

02/10/2018

Customer research is providing group insurers with new opportunities to support their members in their time of need. But can insurers help in the way customers want us to?

 

With members’ needs constantly changing, insurers need to be more adaptable and responsive than ever before. While this is challenging, it does provide new opportunities to evolve and improve.

Over the past few years group insurers have embarked on a journey into occupational rehabilitation to provide even greater support for members.

At AIA Australia, we started small. In 2011 we focused predominantly on training and rehabilitation consultant support. Fast forward to 2018 and we now have one of the largest occupational rehabilitation teams in the industry offering tailored rehabilitation programs to support claims customers individual circumstances.

We have developed a suite of bespoke wellness and work readiness programs specifically targeted at the main disability claim causes that affect members like cancer and mental health.

These programs include:

RESTORE – assisting people with anxiety and depression.

RESTORE CaRe – helping individuals recovering from cancer to address the specific challenges these members are facing.

CaRe Movement – helping individuals recovering from cancer by developing fitness for everyday activities and preparation for returning to work.

How can we do better?

We continue to be informed by feedback from our claims customers and our rehabilitation offering reflects the growing demand for more than just financial support when times are tough.

Each year in April and October we conduct claims customer research with The Beddoes Institute to identify areas for improvement. This years’ results produced interesting feedback:

“I would find home help useful and also help paying for medical appointments and prescriptions.  I can’t afford to pay for these services by myself.”

“I was very happy to receive help from AIA in finding a new workplace who were willing to start me on just a few hours a week. Gradually returning to work made all the difference in building up my confidence in being able to slowly take on more in my life after the accident. This is something I really struggled with and couldn’t have done it without them.” 

“A personal fitness coach once a week would help a great deal. Most people need to be motivated by someone and some of us just need a little bit more help with recovery. I would have found some chiropractic sessions or massage physio to assist with mental and body fatigue after rehabilitation training very helpful. People who feel good about themselves are always more motivated and think about positive outcomes.”

While our rehabilitation team provides members with the extra support they need to return to life, wellbeing and work, there is more our customers want us to do for them.

What’s next?

We’re proud of how far we have come and look forward to continuing to help Australians live healthier, longer, better lives. However, more change is necessary and while our results are good, our claims customers have told us they want more help from us. Our results could be further improved if the current legislative framework were changed to allow insurers the opportunity to provide early rehabilitation and medical expenses.

The industry and its peak body, the Financial Services Council (FSC), have presented a compelling case for allowing insurers the ability to provide early rehabilitation and medical expenses, with the beneficiaries being the customer and their families, the industry, government and the wider community.

If these legislative restrictions were removed, insurers would be able to use more effective early claim intervention practices that would increase the customers’ chances of successful rehabilitation to assist in a speedy recovery, and all the benefits that flow from that outcome.

For more information on AIA Australia’s rehabilitation programs visit aia.com.au