Investing & Money
piece written on the 13th October 2015 by  

If you know me, you’ll know that I love statistics and I’ve come across some new ones. The Association for Savings and Investments South Africa (ASISA) announced that during 2014, only 5 million new individual risk policies to cover the likes of death, disability and critical illness were taken out. During 2013, 5.3 million were taken out showing a decrease of 6%. Did you know that the gap between existing risk cover and actual insurance needs is R24 trillion. Considering that less people are taking out policies is therefore quite a concern as this gap is increasing. What’s scarier is that it’s estimated that 1 in 10 people will suffer from cancer before the age of 65 and 1 in 2 before the age of 85. The statistics just don’t line up – less people are taking out policies yet more people are suffering from an illness that said policies could potentially assist.

Why is this the case? The 2014 FinScope Consumer South Africa survey said that the number one reason for less policies being taken out is unaffordability. That really is quite concerning!

Stephen van Niekerk, who is the Head of Retail Life Insurance Products at Momentum said, “Myriad has always offered clients the most comprehensive and holistic risk cover in the market that makes provision for all stages of clients’ lives”. However, they always design innovative risk products that are based on the following principles:

Building block flexibility

We do not believe in a “one size fits all” approach therefore every Momentum Myriad benefit is a separate building block with its own benefit rules and features. This exceptional flexibility allows clients to package appropriate and unique solutions for their specific needs.

Best of breed solutions

We are in the business of paying clients’ valid claims and spare no effort to ensure that the definitions of our benefits are as comprehensive and objective as possible.

Contemporary solutions

We keep existing clients’ benefits, where possible, up-to-date with the latest enhancements, either automatically and free or charge or through easy policy alterations. This ensures that clients’ solutions remain contemporary.

Referring to the earlier concern of affordability of risk cover, Momentum also innovate in this area by offering clients tiered benefits. The idea behind benefit tiering is to ensure affordable risk solutions that suit our specific needs at a specific time in our lives and this was also incorporated into some of Momentum’s new critical illness benefits

This means that pay-out levels might be less upon diagnosis of a critical illness and increase in line with the condition’s progression. For example, early detection of breast cancer might only require a single non-invasive surgical procedure at an affordable cost. However, should this advance to a more serious level, the critical illness benefit pay-out will make provision for a more substantial pay-out that is aligned to the medical definition of the condition.

The product range takes our needs into account and does what’s possible to ensure that they’re affordable but not at the expense of our health. I like to think of it as a “meet in the middle” type approach.