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iPMI Magazine Speaks with Gitte Bach, CEO and President, New Frontier Group

Please introduce yourself and background in the international medical and travel insurance market:

My name is Gitte Bach, and I am the President and CEO of New Frontier Group.

I started my career in 1990 with International Health Insurance, Denmark. I led the company’s entry into Latin America, helped introduce our new 24/7/365 Alarm Centre and was then asked to help build a new department with a cost containment focus to handle the company’s large medical insurance claims.

In 2002 I left Denmark and went to California, where I founded New Frontier Group. I wanted to create an innovative, solution-oriented company offering multiple, customizable services. We now work with some of the biggest names in the industry.

New Frontier Group provides award winning international medical cost containment. What does award winning cost containment look like?

We never, ever, just sit back and look at the business day to day, but we continuously think about ways we can improve. What is going to be next, how can we develop so that we are always evolving?

We have been doing that both from a technology and a product offering standpoint and we have also developed our employees to live up to that same philosophy in everything they do.

April 2020 and New Frontier Group launched an extremely valuable Telemedicine solution. Can you walk us through the new service and how you see it developing?

We launched NFGtelecare just as the pandemic hit and the world went into lockdown. It was a godsend for many of our clients when access to traditional healthcare was neither safe, nor in many cases, available at all.

Now however, telemedicine is truly established and here to stay. It enhances the service proposition, encourages traveler interaction and ultimately reduces costs.

As well as routine healthcare consultations, we can arrange appointments with a specialist to discuss existing conditions or to get a second medical opinion. We can prescribe and deliver medication via our in-house pharmacy program, Onyx™Rx and if the physician feels that the patient would benefit from further tests or treatment, we can help direct them to a suitable facility nearby.

We need to realize that in this industry telecare is here to stay. Access to healthcare will never revert to how it was before. Telemedicine is now accepted by all our clients.

November 2020, and New Frontier Group wins Industry Supplier of the year at the ITIC Awards. Why did you win this coveted industry award?

Whilst somewhat overshadowed by the current pandemic, we were still extremely proud to have been recognized again at the International Travel Insurance Journal Awards – this time in the new, expanded category of Industry Supplier of the Year.

The award is testament to the continued efforts of our teams in California, South Florida and the UK, in always putting our patients, clients and partners first. From a service perspective, we think that the innovation that most likely impressed the judges was our integrated medical triage, telemedicine and pharmacy concierge service that sits ‘in front’ of our array of cost containment and network solutions. This combination of immediate and low cost access to medical advice and prescription medication, backed up by market leading cost control, is both extremely current and as far as we know, unique in the market.

For international medical payors managing the risks and healthcare of expatriates and people living overseas, what can New Frontier Group provide?

We offer our clients real time, ‘on-the-ground’ expertise and are involved on a daily basis in providing assistance with access to healthcare for expats, students and international travelers. We ensure that the services are appropriate, convenient and of course, part of our extensive network to ensure favourable rates for the payor. This is all part of our service offering and we are also available 24/7 to answer questions or address urgent issues as they arise, irrespective of what time zone our client may be in.

COVID-19 has crashed the travel market as we know it. Travel insurers are washing their hands of COVID-19 risks. Airlines are asking for bail outs. IATA say 25 million jobs are at risk in the airlines and aviation sector. What does the future hold for the travel market?

It has been devastating, both for the travel industry and associated sectors such as travel insurance and assistance. Everyone has had to dig deep and try to ride it out somehow – and we will!

People love to travel and businesses need to travel. There are already some encouraging signs and if these vaccines are rolled out quickly and prove successful, then I think we’ll see a surge from huge, pent-up demand for flights and holidays, with the positive knock-on impact to our industries. Roll-on 2021 is what I say!

Last, but not least, if you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

I have been extremely fortunate to live in many different countries and have visited even more! I find every single one unique and I don’t have a particular favourite although I do love the Spanish/Latin American language and culture so that would probably have a strong bearing!

I do know one thing for certain, no matter where I am, I have always made it my clear mission to live every single day and get the best out of it, no matter where you are in the world!

 

 

 

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TRIP Group Named As ITIJ Awards Finalists

The Travel Risk and Incident Prevention Group (TRIP) are honoured to have been announced as finalists for the prestigious ITIJ Awards in the Industry Supplier of the Year category.

It's been the most challenging year in the history of the travel industry, yet amid the chaos, the Travel Risk & Incident Prevention (TRIP) Group has provided a beacon of light for those struggling to keep their people travelling. Since lockdown measures were introduced the TRIP Group has been at the forefront of finding solutions for safe travel.

Sarah Watson, editor of ITIJ said in a statement, "This year has been challenging in ways that none of us could have foreseen, and each finalist has certainly gone above and beyond in their dedication to excellence within the industry."

The TRIP Group has over 500 organisations listed as members and those members have been quick to respond to last week's announcement. Simon Harris who is Executive Director, Security, Safety & Sustainability at Sony Pictures Entertainment said, "This is a well deserved recognition. Of all the associations, groups and industry collectives I belong to, the TRIP Group provide the most diverse, interesting and topical points for discussions and presentations. There is an impressive and expanding range of members from both within and outside my own industry which consistently adds value to me and my own organisation."

Since the start of the year the TRIP Group has delivered training, consultation and workshops on subjects such as pandemic planning, leading through crisis, managing remote teams, as well as a masterclass on travel risk management. Managing Director, Christine Shacklady explains, "We have assessed the current environment, listened to our members and delivered what they need to keep their businesses working."

This is certainly backed up by those affected by the pandemic. Danni Parks is Director of the Whitely Fund for Nature, who have HRH Princess Ann as their patron and Sir David Attenborough as an ardent supporter said, "This is well deserved recognition of the TRIP Group and a reflection of an excellent team working hard to keep travellers safe during very challenging times. WFN are proud to be members of the TRIP Group, who are always helping keep our staff safe when they travel."

Christine Shacklady goes on to explain, "We have an extensive network of subject matter experts within our community and this allows us to find solutions to just about any challenge. Through our partnerships we have been able to provide discounted rates on Covid-19 tests and fit to fly certificates as well a Covid-19 tracking map."

Government departments are also recognising the value the TRIP Group has brought to the travel risk management arena. Lynne Main, Head of Safety, Health & Wellbeing at Defra said on hearing the announcement, "No matter how complex the challenge, it's comforting to know that via the TRIP Group we always have access to genuine and credible travel risk management expertise."

Summarising the achievement, Lloyd Figgins, CEO & Chairman of the TRIP Group said, "The announcement that we are finalists in the ITIJ Awards is tremendous news for our incredibly hardworking team and also testament to the value of our travel risk management community, we are absolutely delighted."

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Air Alliance Joins International Assistance Group As Accredited Service Provider

Reflecting the needs of travel insurers and their medical assistance providers, with three strategically placed European bases in Germany, the UK and Austria, Air Alliance provide technically supported platforms for their impressive fleet of 11 pre-configured air ambulances.

A variety of Learjets forms a core which quickly covers Europe, North Africa and the Middle East. An experienced planning team and availability of pilots will extend the range to North and South America, the Caribbean, southern Africa and Asia.

Rarely found in Europe are two dedicated Challenger 604s air ambulance aircraft with a maximum capacity of up to three stretchers. These modern ultra-long-haul with a range of some 3,700 nm (6,850 km) are deployed where distance demands or additional medical personnel required due to the complexity of care needs, such as delicate spinal injuries or ECMO. The Challenger 604 is also used for the transport of bariatric (“XXL”) cases with more than 130 kg body weight and patients with heavy infections. As part of their ongoing transport solutions development, Air Alliance is currently preparing the launch of their PMIU “epishuttle, a hi-tech, solid-shell isolation chamber which can also be used for COVID-19 patients on the Challenger 604.

Winning the coveted Air Ambulance of the Year Award in 2017 and 2018 from the International Travel Insurance Journal (ITIJ), Air Alliance also maintains ongoing auditable accreditations with EURAMI, the European Air Safety Agency and the UK’s Care Quality Commission. The focus on delivering excellence is drawn together with IQSMS, their bespoke cloud-based quality and safety management system.

Delivering care at all levels to every group is a pool of 120 medics, covering Advanced Life Support, ECMO, bariatric and neonatal, amongst other disciplines. Three medical directors lead on quality and governance, with the remarkable combined experience and current relevance in senior hospital roles as part of their professional portfolios.

Licensed to provide aero medical training, Air Alliance openly shares its extensive experience through an Aeromedical Academy. Access by other companies and organisations is currently planned.

Quick Air Alliance Facts

Aircraft fleet

  • Challenger 604 x 2

  • Learjet 35 x 7

  • Learjet 31 x 1

  • Learjet 45 x 1 (Coming soon)

Staff total of 127

  • Pilots 43

  • Management/administration/medical 46

  • Technical 38 

Operational 2019

  • Flight hours 7000

  • Missions 925

  • Countries covered 103

Awards and accreditations

  • ITIJ Air Ambulance of the Year 2017 and 2018

  • EURAMI

  • EASA (European Air Safety Agency): Part 145 and Part 21 J

  • CQC (Care Quality Commission, UK Regulator and Auditor)

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New Frontier Group Wins Cost Containment And Claims Management Company Of The Year At The 2019 ITIC Awards In Malta

New Frontier Group, www.newfrontiergroup.com, leader in Cost Containment and Global Assistance solutions, was named Winner of the ITIC Malta Awards 2019, for Cost Containment/Claims Management Company of the Year. 

The annual award, presented by the International Travel & Health Insurance Journal (ITIJ), was announced on Thursday, October 31st, 2019 in Malta, at the International Travel and Health Insurance Industry Conference (ITIC).

Each year ITIJ's Global Conference concludes with an award gala honoring companies for their outstanding contributions of excellence and innovation. Winners are selected by a panel of industry leaders who are experts in the area of the travel and health insurance industry.

As the recipient of the 2019 Cost Containment/Claims Management Company of the Year, New Frontier Group was selected from a large field of global competitors.  Most notably as the recipient of the 2019 Cost Containment/Claims Management award, New Frontier Group was presented this prestigious award based on recognition of outstanding achievement throughout the year.

Accepting the award before hundreds of industry associates, clients and guests, New Frontier Group President and CEO, Ms. Gitte Bach, and COO, Mr. Randall Condie, proudly acknowledged the other nominees in the category and Ms. Bach thanked and expressed her appreciation for the extraordinary performance of the New Frontier Group team which was watching the event live.

Ms. Bach states, "The last 12 months have been phenomenal for our company. I am so proud of the New Frontier Group team for its year-long dedication and commitment. Our team strives daily to provide superior client service and leverage the competitive advantage we have built using technological advancements to serve our clients, providing the very best global healthcare solutions.

Being awarded in this category at this year’s ITIC for 2019 Cost Containment/Claims Management Company of the Year and winning is extremely rewarding and we are truly grateful. We will continue our exciting journey and focus on service excellence, development, innovation and leadership."

About New Frontier Group

New Frontier Group is a global leader in Cost containment/Claims management and Global Assistance solutions. They act as first point of contact for worldwide International Insurance and Assistance Teams. New Frontier Group leads the travel and health insurance industry's global healthcare management services by providing a business suite of customized assistance, full-service solutions and cost savings for its worldwide clients.  New Frontier Group is an independently owned U.S. based International Company established in 2002.

Website: www.newfrontiergroup.com
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/frontier-international-group

 

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EURAMI ITIC Review 2018

With the International Travel Insurance Conference Global 2018 just wrapped up, it is time for the European Aero-Medical Institute (EURAMI) to review what has been a very successful event for the whole EURAMI team.

We are pleased to say that the EURAMI booth has proven to be a great meeting place for existing and new members and has once again shown that the interest in high quality accreditation is still on the rise.  EURAMI accreditation has clearly gained traction and importance as evidenced by the numerous new providers who expressed interested in applying for recognition. 

It has been a particularly exciting week for EURAMI as the EURAMI Board elections were held during the 33rd General Assembly on Thursday, November 1st 2018. A very diverse and highly competent selection of candidates was presented to the members with different approaches and ideas for the further development of the association.

Sergio Abril and Mark Chapman were newly elected for their first term on the Board whereas Franziska Hollenstein was confirmed for her second term on the EURAMI Board. Philipp Schneider, Dr. Cai Glushak and Lisa Humphries will remain on the board to complete their term.

The selection of officers was done shortly after the election and EURAMI is delighted to announce that the Board has selected Dr. Cai Glushak as President, Philipp Schneider as Vice President and Mark Chapman as Treasurer. Dr. Glushak expressed heartfelt thanks to Dr. Laurent Taymans and Pascaline Wolfermann, outgoing president and vice-president respectively, for their extraordinary leadership and efforts to bring EURAMI to a new level during their tenure. 

A great end to a busy conference was the last evening with the Gala Dinner and the ITIJ Awards on November 1st. EURAMI is proud to announce that five EURAMI companies were among the finalists.

In the category of Air Ambulance Provider of the Year 2018 all three finalists – REVA, SARPA and Air Alliance Medlflight - were EURAMI accredited providers with Air Alliance Medflight winning the award for the second time in a row.

Air Ambulance Worldwide was able to win the Award of Best Marketing Campaign of the Year whereas fellow EURAMI provider CEGA took home the award for Assistance Company of the Year. A great achievement from our members!

The EURAMI Board & Head Office would like to thank the ITIC organizers, conference participants and of course its members for such a successful ITIC and would once again like to congratulate all ITIJ Award finalists and winners. See you in 2019 in Malta!

 

 

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Air Alliance Wins Air Ambulance Provider Of The Year Award 2nd Year In A Row

Congratulations to the team at Air Alliance for winning the “Air Ambulance Provider of the Year Award” for the 2nd year running.

During the ceremony at the ITIJ Industry Awards in Geneva, Air Alliance competed against two further finalists and was handed the prestigious award by sponsor Larry Friedman - UC San Diego Health. 

Air Alliance would like to thank all clients and the entire team for their excellent support and great work. 

ABOUT AIR ALLIANCE MEDFLIGHT

Air Alliance Medflight is a 100% subsidiary of the Air Alliance Group, a company that has been successfully serving the market since 1993 in all aspects of aviation. Aircraft sales, air ambulance, aircraft maintenance/development and flight training center are the strategic business units of the company.

To date, Air Alliance runs a fleet of 11 own aircraft (Lear Jet 35, 55 and Challenger 604) They are located in Cologne - Siegerland (near Frankfurt) and Vienna / Austria.

Every year, some 780 missions around the globe and approximately 6,000 flight hours are accomplished. Air Alliance Medflight is specialized in long range flights and in flying to remote areas. On our flights, we propose the full spectrum of care: from basic to advanced life support and critical care with premium medical equipment.

We serve clients from around the globe, including major insurance and assistance companies, governments, hospitals, specialized aviation brokers and private payors

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Rowland Brothers International Wins Ancillary Assistance Service Provider Of The Year 2016 At ITIJ Awards

Rowland Brothers International are proud to be the winners of the first ever Ancillary Assistance Service Provider of the Year award at the ITIJ Industry Awards 2016. This global industry event took place at The Ritz-Carlton in Berlin on the 3rd November 2016 and was the 14th annual International Travel and Health Insurance Journal awards.

The ITIJ awards recognise excellence in the diverse companies providing services worldwide to insurers and their clients. The new Ancillary Assistance Service Provider of the Year award, sponsored by Jet Rescue the worldwide critical air ambulance, acknowledges the high-quality global repatriation service that Rowland Brothers International provide, all over the world.

Rowland Brothers International has been at the heart of global funeral repatriation since 1971 and is a part of Rowland Brothers, a family funeral directors established in 1873. With many proud achievements and accreditations, Rowland Brothers International aim to uphold our outstanding global reputation with families, corporates, and diplomats into the future. As our global network expands it continues to deliver endless support to clients everywhere.

Commenting on the win, Stephen Rowland, Managing Director said, "Our seventh generation family funeral expertise helps us support families repatriating their loved ones to any destination. Our company ethos respects any faith, nationality, origin and destination and I am delighted that the dedication of our staff has been recognized with this award."

An international team effort, Rowland Brothers are leading the future of funeral care and repatriation, and provide support to those in need across the globe. 

For more information about Rowland Brothers International please visit:  www.rowlandbrothersinternational.com

 

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