Aegon has introduced a new health and wellbeing service for its protection customers, through partner organisation Health Assured. The service is available to all protection customers and their families and provides:
* 24/7 access to Health Assured’s qualified and experienced counsellors.
* Support and guidance on a wide range of issues, including:
– loss of a family member or friend
– diagnosis of a medical condition
– emotional issues
– marital and relationship concerns
– family concerns, for example childcare
– work-related concerns
– consumer rights, legal and debt issues.
* Access to Health Assured’s innovative Online Health Assessment tool, providing health and fitness assessments along with nutritional, fitness and lifestyle information.
The service is available throughout the lifetime of the policy and can be accessed at any time(s), not just when a claim is made.
What They Say
Protection director Dougy Grant said: “While financial payouts are essential to help families make ends meet, they're often only part of the story. The need for practical and emotional support can be a more immediate priority. The service comes into its own when a client is diagnosed with a critical illness or they’re dealing with the loss of a loved one, but is equally valuable with more day-to-day issues that create undue stress. Having someone outside the normal circle of friends or family to turn to is a great option in helping release a pressure valve. The range of support offered by Health Assured adds value for clients and having access to it throughout the lifetime of the policy is a real bonus.”
What We Say
"EAPs are common for group business and have becoming increasingly popular in the individual market in recent years too.
"Aegon’s approach is to use a one stop shop to deliver the support package, and this is available 24/7 to customers and their families (through, presumably, the customer). The service is free, applies throughout the policy life and can be used regardless of whether there has been a claim.
"Such services are hugely valued when needed, although it’s also fair to say that few people choose which policy to buy (or recommend) based on the support services available. However, as the Seven Families initiative has shown, support can be even more helpful than cash and certainly, I can see no reason why every protection insurer shouldn’t offer some form of support service.
"The service is essentially passive, in that it relies on the customer to access the service, but that is common to most similar services. There is also no inbuilt system to encourage a healthier lifestyle.
"On the underlying products, Aegon offers a wide range of benefits and a multi-benefit discount, and says that last year it was able to offer terms to 96% of applicants. When choosing insurers, that can be an important factor too."