iPMI Magazine Is Proudly Sponsored By:
For a healthier journey.

iPMI Magazine Has Moved

iPMI Magazine successfully rebranded to iPMI Global in 2023 and has moved to a new home on the internet. To visit the brand new international private medical insurance business intelligence platform, please go to

Charles Taylor Acquires Medical Assistance Provider CEGA Group

Charles Taylor plc has announced that it has acquired CEGA Group (CEGA), a specialist provider of technical medical assistance and travel claims management services.  The acquisition will enable Charles Taylor to offer new services to its clients and to establish deeper relationships with global insurers.  It will strengthen CEGA's position in the UK market and enable CEGA to realise its ambitions to grow in international markets.

CEGA is a market-leading provider of medical assistance and travel claims management services to insurers.  It provides a high-quality, seamlessly integrated end-to-end service, which combines medical assistance with claims and case management, pre-travel advice, medical screening and corporate travel contingency planning.

CEGA is an excellent fit with Charles Taylor.  It brings additional technical, high value-add services to the Group which complement Charles Taylor's existing capabilities.  CEGA has long-standing relationships with large, high profile insurers, some of which are new to Charles Taylor, and these offer the opportunity to cross-sell the Group's other professional services.  In addition, Charles Taylor's businesses and its major clients regularly use medical assistance services.  This means the Group is well-positioned to support CEGA's long-term growth.

CEGA will continue to be run by its current management team.  Alistair Hardie, CEGA's CEO, will report to David Marock, Charles Taylor's Group CEO and will join the Group's Executive Committee.  CEGA's clients will continue to be served by their existing teams, and will benefit from Charles Taylor's financial strength, its operational and technological capabilities, the breadth and depth of its client relationships and its global reach.

The transaction marks an important step forward in Charles Taylor's business strategy to grow by developing new professional services lines, which are closely-related to its core business, through targeted acquisitions.  It forms part of the Group's overall business strategy of delivering growth organically and through investments.

Liberum advised Charles Taylor on the transaction.  CEGA was advised by Meridian Corporate Finance.

David Marock, Group Chief Executive Officer, Charles Taylor said, "The acquisition of CEGA opens another exciting chapter in the growth and development of Charles Taylor.  CEGA is one of the UK's leading providers of travel assistance services and works closely with major insurers which form an important part of our client base.  The acquisition will enable us to further deepen and develop these important relationships.

The services of our two businesses are highly complementary and the acquisition adds to the wide range of technical insurance services offered by Charles Taylor.  We can see significant opportunities for profitable joint-working.  We have client relationships across the global insurance and industrial markets, which mean that we will be able to support CEGA's continued growth.  We will also be able to offer new high-value medical assistance and claims management services to our existing clients."

Alistair Hardie, Chief Executive Officer, CEGA Group, said, "I am delighted that CEGA has become a member of the Charles Taylor Group.  CEGA has built a market-leading range of services including international assistance, medical transfers, claims management and pre-travel consultancy.  As part of the Charles Taylor Group we will have access to resources, expertise and global networks to realise our ambitions to drive growth and develop new markets for our services, and importantly further improve the competitiveness of our core proposition for our existing insurer and corporate clients."

CEGA Uses BBC To Promote Fight Against Travel Insurance Fraud

Over a million BBC viewers are, again, to be warned against the severity of travel insurance fraud, thanks to CEGA's Head of Special Investigations, Simon Cook.

Simon, who starts filming this week for a new series of BBC One's successful Claimed and Shamed programme, is to talk viewers through several travel insurance scams, in a bid to raise public awareness of the industry's zero tolerance towards fraud.

 "It's essential to keep educating the public about insurance fraud and warning that exaggeration is as bad as fabrication when it comes to dishonest claims," says Simon, who has appeared in three previous series of Claimed and Shamed. "Travel insurance fraudsters need to know that their claims will be subject to close scrutiny - even if the evidence lies thousands of miles away."

By highlighting insurance fraud, Claimed and Shamed has already helped to increase reports of suspected fraud to the Insurance Fraud Bureau's (IFB) Cheatline.

The new series will be broadcast later this year.



Rise In Demand For Integrated Medical And Security Assistance Overseas

There has been a rise in the number of organisations requesting integrated medical and security assistance to support employees abroad, according to CEGA Group.

Iraq, Somalia and Pakistan are among the many countries from which demand for integrated medical and security assistance is coming, says the provider. Specific requests have included security risk assessments for emergency medical evacuations, security management for journeys to employees' medical appointments and employee search services in hospitals that are in areas of conflict.

"In recent years, several once-safe employee destinations have been relegated to the Foreign Office list of high-risk places to visit, thanks to political instability, terrorism and other threats," says CEGA's Commercial Director, Jody Baker. "As this travel risk landscape changes, employers are becoming increasingly aware of their duty of care obligations and seeking more comprehensive assistance services to support their mobile workforces in all four corners of the world."

Organisations calling for joined-up medical and security assistance include the media, energy industries and translation agencies, says CEGA, which launched its integrated medical and security assistance service, INtrinsic, earlier this year, with security specialists Solace Global.

"Initial feedback from clients suggests that, by unifying the management of medical and security travel risk and emergency response, INtrinsic is reducing the cost, trauma and delays often associated with a fragmented supply chain of medical and security providers," says Mr Baker.

The INtrinsic programme comprises staff training, travel risk mitigation measures, usable technology, 24/7 response capabilities and post-event evaluation. It gives organisations a single, ongoing view of medical and security travel risk management: ensuring they can reduce exposure to risk before and during staff deployments overseas and manage medical and security emergencies centrally.


Chris Knight Joins CEGA To Extend Its Integrated Medical And Security Assistance Provision For Insured Corporate Travellers

CEGA Group has appointed a Head of Corporate Services: extending its risk management and assistance capabilities for insured corporate travellers and supporting the recent launch of its integrated medical and security service, INtrinsic.

Chris Knight, who takes on the new role, brings extensive experience from senior positions in the British Army and security services industry. He has undergone numerous tactical and strategic deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan and has specialised in operational planning and intelligence analysis.

Chris, who has also operated dynamic medical, security and natural disaster evacuations from complex and challenging environments (including Gaza and Kurdistan) will manage relationships with CEGA's key corporate clients in the context of combined security and medical risk. This will see him ensuring that the highest quality of service is provided and that process and procedure is constantly reviewed within the corporate team. He will also hold a business development role.

"In today's climate of increasing travel risk, Chris offers invaluable expertise to our corporate travel insurance clients," says Neil Heasman, CEGA's operations director. "His appointment supports our strategic growth and development plans in the corporate arena and further differentiates our integrated medical and security services in the marketplace."

"With the ever closer union of medical and security needs for corporate travellers, this is an exciting time to join CEGA," adds Chris. "The new role offers an opportunity to help shape and deliver an innovative strategic vision for the benefit of travel insurance policyholders in a changing risk landscape."


BBC Highlights Travel Insurance Fraud With CEGA

Thousands of BBC viewers will find out about the folly of travel insurance fraud in February, when Head of Special Investigations for CEGA, Simon Cook, takes to the screen to explain that no stone is left unturned in the industry's quest to expose fraudsters - wherever they are in the world.

BBC One's Claimed and Shamed will see Simon talking viewers through a supposed car break-in near Mumbai, a fictitious death in Nigeria and cosmetic surgery posing as emergency medical treatment in Lebanon - all exposed with the help of CEGA's investigators "on the ground" overseas. Meanwhile, Simon and his team also get to the bottom of a suspicious mobile phone theft in Spain, after desktop investigations back in the UK.

"The message to travel insurance fraudsters is clear," says Simon. "We will go to great lengths to investigate suspicious claims all over the world  - however complex and distant they may seem."

This is CEGA's third appearance on the successful Claimed and Shamed series, which attracts over a million morning viewers. By shining a spotlight on fraud, the series has acted as a catalyst to increase the volume of reports of suspected insurance fraud submitted to the Insurance Fraud Bureau's (IFB) Cheatline.

You can watch CEGA in Claimed and Shamed on Thursday 18th, Friday 19th, Monday 22nd and Wednesday 24th February: BBC One at 11am.


Travel Insurance Warning For Gap Year Travellers

As thousands of young Brits leave the UK this month for adventurous gap years, the chief medical officer of leading independent assistance and travel claims company, CEGA, has warned of the perils of setting off without travel insurance – not just because an accident or injury overseas may be cripplingly expensive, but also because travelling without cover can make it difficult to reach the right medical care in an emergency.

Dr Tim Hammond's warning comes after recent ABTA research shows that an increasing number of young people are shunning travel insurance when they go overseas.  The organisation revealed that one in three (33%) of 16-24 year olds currently travels without insurance: up from 22% in 2014.

"Without travel insurance, a sick or injured gap year student would be taken to the nearest public hospital for treatment," advised Dr Hammond "and, in popular gap year countries like Thailand and India, there is a huge discrepancy between public and private medical care." He added "Travel insurance doesn't just cover the cost of medical treatment, it also guarantees access to the best care  - wherever a traveller may be in the world.

"Whilst a country like Canada - also popular amongst gap year travellers - does offer a consistently high quality of medical care, its hospitals are particularly expensive if there's no insurer to pick up the bill," continued Dr Hammond in his warning.

Those travelling to Australia and New Zealand, which top the list of ABTA's most popular gap year destinations this year, similarly need to take out travel insurance, advised Dr Hammond - even though the UK's reciprocal agreements with the countries entitle Britons to (largely) free medical care. "Although UK residents generally won't have to pay for medical care in New Zealand and Australia they may need to be repatriated at great expense."

Dr Hammond applied a similar caution to those travelling in Europe during their gap years – and advised them to take out travel insurance as well as a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). He said: "An EHIC will entitle you to basic state medical treatment in Europe, but it won't cover you for treatment in a private hospital or for emergency medical repatriation back to the UK, if you need it."

​Top 10 gap year destinations (source: ABTA)​

  1.         Australia
  2.         New Zealand
  3.         USA 
  4.         Peru
  5.         Vietnam
  6.         Thailand  
  7.         Canada  
  8.         Brazil
  9.         Argentina
  10.       India

Medical Insurance Plan Launched For International Contractors

Specialist global insurance intermediary Bellwood Prestbury have, in partnership with APRIL international, launched a new international medical expenses plan specifically designed for the international contractor sector.

The plan has been designed to fill an important void for the many self-employed and small groups of employees who are often faced with a combination of high premiums and insufficient cover when trying to arrange cover.

Whether onshore or offshore, the International Contractors Health Plan offers a range of tailored medical insurance solutions for people working in the Oil & Gas, Energy, Telecommunications, Technology and Associated sectors

Offering a choice of three levels of cover available for periods of 3, 6, 9 or 12 months, every policy includes as standard 24/7 Emergency Medical Evacuation (CEGA Assistance), 24/7 Crisis Management Assistance (Red24) and Global Blood Transfusion support (Blood Care Foundation), making it particularly ideal for anyone working in difficult or remote areas where medical treatment may be limited or hard to access.

Andrew Apps, Head of Global Healthcare at Bellwood Prestbury International commented “By bringing together a choice of comprehensive cover benefits and affordable premiums, this unique programme recognises the demands and requirements of the global contractor by packaging each element under a single proposition.”

The International Contractors Plan is ideal for anyone looking for either short or long-term cover, and has the advantage of providing cover between assignments, so removing the need to reapply for cover and facing potential underwriting issues every time a new job comes along”.

With a dedicated web site at, instant quotes available online and fast moratorium underwriting acceptance, the International Contractors Plan has been designed to be easy to understand, straight forward to buy and simple to use.


CEGA Intensifies Fight Against Insurance Fraud In BBC Series

Assistance and claims provider CEGA is again preparing to feature in a BBC series to intensify the fight against insurance fraud - after its last appearance on the programme attracted over a million morning viewers and recorded unusually positive audience impression data. 

CEGA starts filming this week for the autumn series of BBC1's Claimed and Shamed  - just days after the ABI announced record savings on detected insurance fraud. The programme will see CEGA's Head of Special Investigations Simon Cook warning hundreds of thousands of expected viewers against the perils of making dishonest travel insurance claims.

"Complementing our fraud investigation skills with BBC coverage of our work enables us not just to detect dishonest claims, but also to deter potential fraudsters: maximising support for insurers," says Simon. "This holistic approach to insurance fraud is essential to its effective reduction," he adds. "Our collaboration with insurers, trade bodies and the police has already yielded great results in this respect, with half of the travel insurance fraudsters investigated in IFED*'s 2014 day of action referred by CEGA's Special Investigations Unit."

Simon will run Claimed and Shamed viewers through detected travel insurance scams all over the world, making it clear that fraudsters just can't get away with it - however distant or complex their scams may be.

New ABI research reveals that insurers uncover 350 insurance frauds worth £3.6 million every day, that the value of detected insurance fraud is at a record high and that the insurance frauds uncovered in 2014 doubled the value of retail crime.  Commenting on the figures, the ABI'sDirector of General Insurance Policy, James Dalton said:  "Insurance cheats are now more likely to get caught than ever before...and face long-lasting and serious consequences."

*Insurance Fraud Enforcement Department


CEGA'S Special Investigations Unit Gains Industry Awards

Claims and assistance provider CEGA reports that every member of its Special Investigations Unit (SIU) has achieved the Level 3 Award for Professional Investigators.

"The awards demonstrate our commitment to deliver the very best investigative service to insurers," says Simon Cook, Head of CEGA's Special Investigations. "They allow us to meet future Home Office licensing regulations in advance of their enforcement ​ ​in April and enable clients to feel confident that they are using fully certified professional investigators."

CEGA's SIU underwent nearly forty hours of training to achieve the awards. This covered every area of personal investigations, from surveillance to confidentiality: taking in, among other subjects, ethical standards, human rights, and vulnerable witness protocol. From April 6th 2015, under the Private Security Industry Act, the undertaking of investigative activity by an unlicensed person will be an offence. The new regulations have been created in the wake of the Leveson Inquiry.


Barclays Pingit Partners With Cega To Send Claims Payments Via Mobile Phone Numbers

Barclays Pingit has partnered with CEGA Group in the first commercial arrangement to send payments to customers using only their mobile phone numbers.

The ground-breaking new ‘send a payment’ service is a faster alternative to BACS and will allow any customers who download the free Barclays Pingit app to receive claims payments within as little as an hour of their claim being approved.

“CEGA has been working closely with Barclays during the development of send a payment and we are delighted to be the first business to be signed up to use the facility,” says Warwick Hoddy, CEGA’s Financial Director. “Send a payment exemplifies CEGA’s innovative and progressive approach to customer service and supports our commitment to fast track claims payments.”

Mike Walters, Head of UK Corporate Payments at Barclays said: “Consumers today want quick and convenient ways to receive value, and this is something CEGA themselves have been quick to realise. Mobile payment provides a fast and secure way to do this without the need for consumers to disclose their account number. By partnering with CEGA, we’re able to support them in providing their clients with a best in class customer experience for settling travel claims.”

CEGA’s partnership with Barclays Pingit follows its significant investment in state of the art claims handling software; similarly demonstrating its desire to constantly improve the customer experience.

Subscribe to this RSS feed