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iPMI Magazine

International Private Medical Insurance Magazine (iPMIM) is the ultimate Health and Medical Insurance Digital Media serving expatriate, corporate, health and travel insurance markets. Due to the nomadic nature of the international healthcare industry iPMI Magazine is an internet based news service, for worldwide healthcare professionals, who need to understand the impacts of healthcare and insurance policy, regulatory, and legislative developments. Combined with in depth health insurance industry analysis, best-in-class health insurance industry data, and exclusive, C-Suite Executive health insurance interviews and round tables, iPMI Magazine bridges an information gap between healthcare payor, provider and patient. Written by the health and medical insurance industry, for the health and medical insurance industry, iPMIM is supported and designed by leading international medical insurance companies and service providers.

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International private medical insurance (IPMI) was traditionally considered an exclusive health insurance plan for expatriates. Now, the definition of an expatriate is obsolete because more people, including local nationals and expats, regularly travel internationally, due to their lifestyle, income and careers.

These people need international medical insurance irrespective of their national status or residency. Local nationals, expats, and global nomads are driving demand for IPMI products well beyond any residency classification.

The globally mobile population has grown dramatically along with the increased global business. There are 66 million expatriates, and by 2020 this will be 87.5 million. 260 million people now live away from their country of birth and within a decade the total number of expatriate workers and international students will be 100 million.

IPMI as health insurance without borders is the future of health insurance for all people irrespective of their country of nationality, residence or current domicile. The domestic health insurance market is changing and expanding in many markets around the world. Technology, innovation in health treatment and digitisation of processes are also powerful shapers of the future of health insurance.

Compulsory insurance, voluntary top-up covers, differences between what you can sell to locals and expatriates, rules on overseas investors, compulsory local partnerships, economic sanctions, and even local politics are all things that insurers and brokers must understand- as are newer factors of controls on insurance and healthcare prices, and recent compulsory health insurance rules for travellers or students.

There have been several new entrants to the global healthcare insurance and ancillary services market, long dominated by a small handful of existing insurance companies. Regional insurers and brokers are active in the sector.

The focus on wellness and the proactive approach of keeping customers healthy is a key change. The focus is health insurance, not just illness insurance and, proactively engaging with customers to help them lead long and healthy lives.

Technology is changing the market, with access to information and care through mobile applications and innovations such as virtual health, telemedicine and virtual GP services. Data will also drive more accurate underwriting and wellness solutions at an individual customer level. The days of the fully personalised cover are not far off.

IPMI must comply with local laws and regulations and local needs that differ considerably from country to country.

IPMI overview contents

Volume 1


  • Overview

  • Growth of need for IPM

  • Health insurance definitions

  • Expatriate definitions

  • Voluntary health insurance

  • Why IPMI and PMI are no longer separate

  • Social and technological disruption

  • Duty of care

  • Why insurers are moving into PMI/IPMI

  • The changing insurance ecosystem

  • Customer centricity

  • Blockchain

  • Emerging markets

  • Belt and Road initiative

  • Middle East and North Africa

  • Asia

  • IPMI must cover more than insurance

  • The future

International health insurance numbers

  • Global premium figures

  • Onshoring and offshoring

  • Premium retention in countries

  • Premiums and local taxes

  • Local partnerships

  • Muddying the waters

  • It is not health insurance

Health insurance

  • Compulsory health insurance

  • Health insurance market potential

  • Global medical price trends

  • Health insurance pricing trends

  • Global health insurance price and trends

  • Health insurance and universal healthcare

  • Global benefits

  • Digital transformation


  • Health at a Glance Europe 2018

  • Global healthcare

International health insurance market

  • Buying the market overseas

  • Distribution

  • Healthcare or health insurance

  • History

  • Market potential

  • Hospitals offering health insurance

  • Numbers of insurers

  • Insurance companies

  • Latin American healthcare potential

  • Lloyd’s of London

  • Lloyds’ brokers

  • Managing general agents

  • Third party administrators

  • Insurance brokers

  • Financial advisors

  • Insurance agents

  • Banks

  • Health insurance trade bodies

  • Health insurance comparison sites

  • Micro insurance

  • Mobile devices

  • Self- insurance

  • Smart phones

  • Social media

  • Videos

International health insurance products

  • Cover

  • International insurance versus domestic insurance

  • IPMI in 2019

Expatriate numbers

  • Expatriate figures

  • Global number of expatriates

  • Global population

  • Expatriates, migrants and refugees

  • Global mobility

  • Expatriate population as % of worldwide population

  • Expatriate or international migrant

  • Refugees and expatriates

  • International students

  • Migrant workers

  • Cross border workers

  • Diasporas

  • Migration and health


  • Target markets for insurers

  • What is an expatriate?

  • Expatriate characteristics

  • Expatriate salaries and benefits

  • Buyers

  • Dependants

  • Emerging markets middle class

  • Generation Y

  • More than one product

  • High net worth

  • How people choose international health insurance

  • Indian companies

  • Maritime

  • Mining

  • Music industry

  • NGOs

  • Need

  • Oil and gas

  • Overseas employees need support

  • Questions potential customers ask

  • Retirees

  • Self-employed

  • Short assignments

  • Short-term cover

  • Singles

  • Students

  • Target ages

  • Teachers

  • Wealthy expatriates

  • Who can be covered?

  • Why companies buy it

  • Why individuals buy it

  • Why needs are changing

  • Why not just buy cover locally

  • Women

The product

  • Addiction treatment

  • Admitted policies

  • Apps

  • Big data

  • Budget covers

  • Cancer

  • Chatbots

  • Choice of cover or set packages

  • Claims

  • Compliance with local law

  • Co-payments

  • Critical illness

  • Currency

  • Danger zones

  • Diabetes treatment

  • Diaspora insurance

  • Duty of care

  • Emergency assistance

  • Emergency evacuation

  • European Air Medical Institute

  • Fertility treatment

  • Fraud

  • Funeral plans

  • Global cover

  • Helplines

  • Income protection

  • Insurers rethink of health insurance

  • International medical accreditation

  • Medical evacuation and repatriation

  • Medical tourism and insurance

  • Medical travel insurance

  • Mental health

  • Micro health insurance

  • Obesity treatment

  • Organ transplants

  • Passive war

  • Political risks

  • Pricing

  • Price regulation

  • Pricing on group schemes

  • Private repatriation

  • Risk management

  • Second medical opinion

  • Security and travel advice

  • Takaful

  • Takaful health

  • Telehealth

  • Term life

  • Top up covers

  • Travel insurance

  • Underwriting

  • Virtual doctors

  • War risks

  • Wearables

Volume 2 Companies

National, regional and local insurers and brokers

  • Base country

  • HQ

  • Ownership

  • Overview

  • Structure

  • Insurance

  • Healthcare

  • Customer numbers

  • Strategy

  • 2018 results

  • 2019 forecasts

  • Buying businesses

  • Selling businesses

  • Failed deals

  • Partnerships

  • Sponsorships

  • Micro health

  • Products

  • Apps

  • Marketing

  • Technology

  • Start-ups, accelerators and labs

  • Countries A to Z

Company profiles

  • A Plus

  • Abacare

  • Achmea


  • AIA

  • AIG

  • Aetna

  • Ageas

  • Alan

  • Allegiant

  • Alliance Group

  • Allianz

  • Amariz

  • Amazon

  • Anbang

  • Antae

  • Anthem

  • AON

  • Apple


  • Ardonagh


  • Aviva

  • AXA

  • Bellwood Prestbury

  • Berkshire Hathaway

  • Blue Cross

  • Blue Cross Blue Shield

  • Bupa

  • CCW

  • Chubb

  • Cigna

  • Clements Worldwide

  • CM International

  • Collinson

  • CXA

  • DFV

  • Daman

  • DavidShield

  • Discovery

  • Doha Insurance

  • Exclusive Healthcare

  • Expacare

  • Expatriate Group

  • Fairfax

  • Fosun

  • Freedom Health

  • Gallagher

  • General & Medical

  • Generali

  • Global Benefits

  • Global Underwriters

  • Great West Lifeco

  • Gulf Insurance Group

  • Haven Healthcare

  • Healix

  • HealthCare International

  • Henner

  • Humana

  • Integra Global

  • Jubilee

  • LAMP

  • Liberty Mutual

  • Lloyds

  • Lockton

  • Malakoff Médéric Humanis


  • Marsh McLennan

  • Medgulf

  • Medibank

  • Medicover

  • Met Life

  • MMI

  • Morgan Price

  • Munich

  • Mutua Madrilena

  • National Life and General

  • New India

  • nib

  • NN Group

  • Now Health International

  • Nugent Sante

  • Old Mutual

  • Oman Insurance

  • Pacific Cross

  • Pacific Prime

  • Pan-American Life

  • Premier Group

  • Primary Group

  • Punter Southall

  • Qatar Insurance

  • QBE

  • RBI Premium

  • Regency Assurance

  • Saham

  • Saico

  • JW Seagon

  • Seven Corners

  • Siaci Saint Honore

  • Sompo

  • Starr

  • State Life

  • Status Global

  • Swiss Global

  • Swiss Life

  • Tokio Marine

  • UnitedHealth

  • Union Insurance

  • Vienna Insurance

  • WAFA

  • William Russell

  • Willis

  • Zhong An

  • Zurich

Volume 3 countries

Country profiles look at:

* Healthcare, healthcare reforms and price controls

* State health insurance and planned reform

* Compulsory health and travel health insurance and planned reforms

* Private health insurance and supplementary covers

* Health insurance regulation and planned reform

* Health insurance price regulation and planned reform

* Specific data and requirements for expats


  • Healthcare

  • Healthcare for expatriates

  • Healthcare regulators

  • Healthcare regulation

  • Healthcare price regulation

  • State health insurance

  • State health insurance top up

  • Compulsory health insurance for locals

  • Compulsory health insurance for expatriates

  • Compulsory health insurance for overseas students

  • Compulsory travel health insurance for visitors

  • Health insurance for locals overseas

  • Private health insurance

  • Insurance company and broker regulators

  • Health insurance regulation

  • Health insurance price regulation

  • 2019 population

  • 2030 population estimate

  • UN 2017 number of international immigrants- inbound

  • UN 2017 number of international emigrants- outbound

  • UN numbers of refugees

  • Local figures on expatriate numbers

  • Local figures on expatriate sources

  • Local figures on Diaspora

  • Leading local health insurers

  • Head office of leading health insurers and brokers

  • International health insurers/ brokers/agents activities


  • Abu Dhabi

  • Afghanistan

  • Albania

  • Algeria

  • Andorra

  • Angola

  • Antigua

  • Argentina

  • Armenia

  • Australia

  • Austria

  • Azerbaijan

  • Bahamas

  • Bahrain

  • Bangladesh

  • Barbados

  • Belarus

  • Belgium

  • Belize

  • Bermuda

  • Bolivia

  • Bosnia

  • Botswana

  • Brazil

  • British Virgin Islands

  • Brunei Darussalam

  • Bulgaria

  • Burkina Faso

  • Burundi

  • Cambodia

  • Canada

  • Cayman Islands

  • Chile

  • China

  • Colombia

  • Costa Rica

  • Croatia

  • Cuba

  • Curacao

  • Cyprus

  • Czech Republic

  • Denmark

  • Dominica

  • Dominican Republic

  • Dubai

  • Ecuador

  • Egypt

  • Estonia

  • Ethiopia

  • Fiji

  • Finland

  • France

  • Georgia

  • Germany

  • Ghana

  • Gibraltar

  • Greece

  • Grenada

  • Guatemala

  • Guernsey

  • Guyana

  • Honduras

  • Hong Kong

  • Hungary

  • Iceland

  • India

  • Indonesia

  • Iran

  • Iraq

  • Ireland

  • Israel

  • Italy

  • Jamaica

  • Japan

  • Jersey

  • Jordan

  • Kazakhstan

  • Kenya

  • Kuwait

  • Kyrgyzstan

  • Latvia

  • Lebanon

  • Lesotho

  • Libya

  • Lithuania

  • Luxembourg

  • Macau

  • Macedonia

  • Malawi

  • Malaysia

  • Maldives

  • Malta

  • Mauritius

  • Mexico

  • Moldova

  • Monaco

  • Mongolia

  • Montenegro

  • Morocco

  • Mozambique

  • Myanmar

  • Nepal

  • Netherlands

  • New Zealand

  • Nicaragua

  • Nigeria

  • Norway

  • Oman

  • Pakistan

  • Panama

  • Papua New Guinea

  • Paraguay

  • Peru

  • Philippines

  • Poland

  • Portugal

  • Puerto Rico

  • Qatar

  • Romania

  • Russia

  • Rwanda

  • Saint Kitts And Nevis

  • Saint Lucia

  • Saudi Arabia

  • Serbia

  • Sierra Leone

  • Singapore

  • Slovak Republic

  • Slovenia

  • Somalia

  • South Africa

  • South Korea

  • Spain

  • Sri Lanka

  • Sudan

  • Swaziland

  • Sweden

  • Switzerland

  • Syria

  • Taiwan

  • Tanzania

  • Thailand

  • Trinidad And Tobago

  • Tunisia

  • Turkey

  • Turks And Caicos

  • Uganda

  • Ukraine

  • United Arab Emirates

  • United Kingdom

  • Usa

  • Uruguay

  • Venezuela

  • Vietnam

  • Yemen

  • Zambia

  • Zimbabwe

ABTA Estimates Over 90,000 Jobs* Already Affected In UK Travel And Wider Industry

Following a survey of its Members, ABTA – The Travel Association is able to reveal that 39,000 jobs have already been lost or placed at risk across the outbound travel sector since the crisis started, and when supply chains are also considered this number amounts to over 90,000 people affected.

  • 18% of jobs in outbound travel** have already been lost or placed at risk, according to ABTA Member survey***
  • Situation set to worsen with 78% of businesses yet to enter redundancy conversations expecting to do so in coming months based on current trading conditions
  • To provide evidence on the situation facing the industry and call for assistance to Save Future Travel, ABTA has today written to the Chancellor setting a plan to build consumer confidence and save jobs in the industry

The situation when it comes to jobs in the travel industry has reached a critical point, with measures to control the pandemic affecting the market, which is why, today, ABTA has written to the Chancellor of the Exchequer to ask for tailored support in the form of a package of measures to support businesses and employees.

ABTA finds the Government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has been a significant help for businesses in the travel industry, with nine in ten businesses taking part in the scheme to support staff. However, 65% of businesses have either had to make redundancies or have started a consultation process. Despite this, there is optimism that the travel industry can recover, if offered the right support by Government, with four in ten businesses confident travel can return to 2019 levels by 2022.

To do this, according to ABTA’s plan, the Government should adopt a regionalised approach to quarantine rules. In the absence of a regional approach to Foreign Office travel advice and quarantine rules the Association highlights it is difficult to see how the UK can reopen travel to critical trade partners, including the US, in the foreseeable future.

At the same time, if the travel industry is to retain the maximum number of jobs, it is vital that consumers are incentivised to book holidays. With the peak booking season starting from December, ABTA is therefore urging the Government to use the Autumn Budget to announce an Air Passenger Duty (APD) holiday covering Summer 2021.

If the Government does not act with tailored support for travel, as it has for other sectors, 83% of firms estimate that it will have a critical or serious impact on their business.

To Save Future Travel, ABTA’s plan is to:

  1. Regionalise quarantine: moving to a regionalised quarantine and Foreign Office travel advice policy will provide additional certainty for businesses and consumers.
  2. Introduce testing: a testing regime will enable travel to resume to major global trading partners and mitigate the risk of infection from high risk countries.
  3. Grant an APD holiday: to boost demand for travel, including Summer holidays in 2021.
  4. Provide recovery grants and other business support measures: travel agents, the vast majority of whom are SMEs, receive the majority of their income through commission that is paid on the departure, so these businesses will need support to get them through to the next major travel period next Easter. The Government can support these businesses by issuing another round of grants, based on those offered to Retail, Hospitality, and Leisure businesses earlier in the crisis, and extending other business support measures into 2021/22.
  5. Give ongoing salary support: with the furlough scheme drawing to a close at the end of October, the government should consider extending support for businesses that have not seen a significant recovery in revenues, as has happened elsewhere such as Australia. Targeting salary support where it is needed until March 2021 would reduce the cost to HM Treasury and could preserve tens of thousands of jobs in travel.

While public health is rightly the Government’s priority right now, few sectors in the UK economy have been hit as hard as travel by the measures used to control the pandemic. With only 65% of businesses operating again, many parts of the travel industry remain shuttered, such as cruise and school travel operators. Moreover, if a second wave inspired a further shutdown, 96% of travel businesses report it would have a critical or serious impact on their ability to survive.  

Mark Tanzer, ABTA’s Chief Executive, says: “With the Government’s stop start measures, the restart of travel has not gone as hoped for the industry, and sadly businesses continue to be adversely affected and jobs are being lost at an alarming rate. Coming towards the end of the traditional period for peak booking, we have hit a critical point as existing Government measures to support businesses begin to taper off, the consequence of which, according to this survey of ABTA Members will be ruinous for more people’s livelihoods.

“Travel desperately needs the Government in its next review to provide tailored support or tens of thousands more jobs will be lost. We have already seen well-known and respected businesses that would normally be successful falling into administration, and more are sadly set to follow unless the Government can Save Future Travel.”

* CEBR research on industry employment shows that for every 1 job in outbound travel there are 1.39 jobs in the wider related industries (indirect and induced) – that equates to 39,000* 1.39 = 54,210 jobs in the wider sector. Total = 93,210
** Direct jobs in the outbound travel industry – tour operators, travel agents and airline staff
*** ABTA Member Survey 31/07/2020-17/08/2020 responses taken from in-depth survey of 76 Members spanning representative industry types with a combined turnover of £4.8bn

90% Of Countries Report Disruptions To Essential Health Services Since Covid-19 Pandemic

The World Health Organization has published a first indicative survey on the impact of COVID-19 on health systems based on 105 countries’ reports.

Data collected from five regions over the period from March to June 2020 illustrate that almost every country (90%) experienced disruption to its health services, with low- and middle-income countries reporting the greatest difficulties.  Most countries reported that many routine and elective services have been suspended, while critical care - such as cancer screening and treatment and HIV therapy – has seen high-risk interruptions in low-income countries.

"The survey shines a light on the cracks in our health systems, but it also serves to inform new strategies to improve healthcare provision during the pandemic and beyond,” said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General. "COVID-19 should be a lesson to all countries that health is not an ‘either-or’ equation. We must better prepare for emergencies but also keep investing in health systems that fully respond to people’s needs throughout the life course."

Services hit across the board: Based on reports from key informants, countries on average experienced disruptions in 50% of a set of 25 tracer services. The most frequently disrupted areas reported included routine immunization – outreach services (70%) and facility-based services (61%), non-communicable diseases diagnosis and treatment (69%), family planning and contraception (68%), treatment for mental health disorders (61%), cancer diagnosis and treatment (55%). 

Countries also reported disruptions in malaria diagnosis and treatment (46%), tuberculosis case detection and treatment (42%) and antiretroviral treatment (32%). While some areas of health care, such as dental care and rehabilitation, may have been deliberately suspended in line with government protocols, the disruption of many of the other services is expected to have harmful effects on population health in the short- medium- and long-term.

Potentially life-saving emergency services were disrupted in almost a quarter of responding countries. Disruptions to 24-hour emergency room services for example were affected in 22% of countries, urgent blood transfusions were disrupted in 23% of countries, emergency surgery was affected in 19% of the countries.  

Disruption due to a mix of supply and demand side factors. 76% of countries reported reductions in outpatient care attendance due to lower demand and other factors such as lockdowns and financial difficulties. The most commonly reported factor on the supply side was cancellation of elective services (66%).  Other factors reported by countries included staff redeployment to provide COVID-19 relief, unavailability of services due to closings, and interruptions in the supply of medical equipment and health products.

Adapting service delivery strategies. Many countries have started to implement some of the WHO recommended strategies to mitigate service disruptions, such as triaging to identify priorities, shifting to on-line patient consultations, changes to prescribing practices and supply chain and public health information strategies. However, only 14% of countries reported removal of user fees, which WHO recommends to offset potential financial difficulties for patients.

The pulse survey also provides an indication of countries’ experiences in adapting strategies to mitigate the impact on service provision.  Despite the limitations of such a survey, it highlights the need to improve real-time monitoring of changes in service delivery and utilization as the outbreak is likely to wax and wane over the next months, and to adapt solutions accordingly.  

To that end, WHO will continue to work with countries and to provide supportive tools to address the fallout from COVID-19. Given countries’ urgent demand for assistance during the pandemic response, WHO is developing the COVID19: Health Services Learning Hub, a web-based platform that will allow sharing of experiences and learning from innovative country practices that can inform the collective global response. WHO is also devising additional surveys at the sub-national level and in health facilities to gauge the longer-term impact of disruptions and help countries weigh the benefits and risks of pursuing different mitigation strategies. 

The survey ‘Rapid assessment of continuity of essential health services during the COVID-19 pandemic’ (HYPERLINK), was conducted in 159 countries (all WHO regions except the Americas). 105 responses were received (66% response rate) from senior ministry of health officials covering the period from March to June 2020. The purpose of the survey was to gain insights and perspectives on both the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on up to 25 essential health services in countries and how countries are adapting strategies to maintain essential services.

While pulse surveys have some limitations, the strength of this effort is that it is comprehensive, looking at 25 core health services (as opposed to single topic surveys) and representing disruptions to these services in a comparable way across over 100 countries. It reveals that even robust health systems can be rapidly overwhelmed and compromised by a COVID-19 outbreak, reinforcing the need for sustained data collection and strategic adaptations to ensure maintenance of essential care provision.

Sluggish Improvement In Passenger Demand Continues

Passenger demand in July (measured in revenue passenger kilometers or RPKs), continued at critically low levels--79.8% below July 2019 levels.

This was somewhat better than the 86.6% year-over-year decline recorded in June, primarily driven by domestic markets, most notably Russia and China. Market reopening in the Schengen Area helped to boost international demand in Europe, but other international markets showed little change from June. Capacity was 70.1% below 2019 levels and load factor sagged to a record low for July, at 57.9%.

“The crisis in demand continued with little respite in July. With essentially four in five air travelers staying home, the industry remains largely paralyzed. Governments reopening and then closing borders or removing and then re-imposing quarantines does not give many consumers confidence to make travel plans, nor airlines to rebuild schedules,” said Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s Director General and CEO.

Total Market
Asia Pacific
Latin America
Middle East
North America

International Passenger Markets

July international passenger demand collapsed 91.9% compared to July 2019, a slight improvement over the 96.8% decline recorded in June. Capacity plummeted 85.2%, and load factor sank 38.9 percentage points to 46.4%.

European carriers’ July demand toppled 87.1% compared to last year, improved from a 96.7% drop in June, year-over-year, reflecting relaxation of travel restrictions in the Schengen Area. Capacity dropped 79.2% and load factor fell by 33.8 percentage points to 55.1%.

Asia-Pacific airlines’ July traffic dived 96.5% compared to the year-ago period, virtually unchanged from a 97.1% drop in June, and the steepest contraction among regions. Capacity fell 91.7% and load factor shrank 47.3 percentage points to 35.3%.

Middle Eastern airlines posted a 93.3% traffic decline for July, compared with a 96.1% demand drop in June. Capacity tumbled 85.6%, and load factor sank 43.4 percentage points to 38.0%.

North American carriers saw a 94.5% traffic decline in July, a slight uptick from a 97.1% decline in June. Capacity fell 86.1%, and load factor dropped 53.0 percentage points to 35.0%, second lowest among regions.

Latin American airlines experienced a 95.0% demand drop in July, compared to the same month last year, versus a 96.6% drop in June. Capacity fell 92.6% and load factor sank 27.1 percentage points to 58.4%, highest among the regions.

African airlines’ traffic dropped 94.6% in July, somewhat improved from a 97.8% contraction in June. Capacity contracted 84.6%, and load factor fell 47.1 percentage points to 25.4%, which was the lowest among regions.

Domestic Passenger Markets

Domestic traffic fell 57.5% in July. This was an improvement compared to a 68% decline in June. Domestic capacity fell 42.2% and load factor dropped 22.9 percentage points to 63.3%.

Dom. Australia
Dom. Brazil
Dom. China P.R.
Dom. Japan
Dom. Russian Fed.
Dom. US

China’s carriers’ traffic was down 28.4% compared to July 2019. Recovery had slowed modestly in June amid new virus outbreaks but resumed its pace from mid-July.

Russian airlines’ domestic traffic was down 17.7% in July, dramatically improved compared with 58% decline in June. Demand has been supported by low domestic fares and a boom in domestic tourism.

ROCK Insurance Group Updates Its COVID-19 Insurance Policies To Include Cover For Travel Against FCO Advice

ROCK Insurance Group has updated its policies, making it the first travel insurance brand to provide cover when travelling against FCO advice whilst simultaneously protecting consumers against COVID-related issues both pre-departure and whilst abroad.

The policies have been updated to support the travel trade by instilling consumer confidence around travelling so they can go on their holidays as planned when flight and accommodation services are still operating, knowing they are protected, even if the destination is removed from the UK Government’s travel corridors list.

The updated policies allow consumers to travel against FCO advice but only when it relates to COVID-19 – exclusion will still apply for all other reasons, e.g. natural disasters, civil unrest etc. While the updated FCO-related policy is currently only applicable to European destinations, ROCK Insurance Group is working on including other non-European countries which will be announced soon.

As well as including cover for travel against FCO advice to European countries, the benefits of the existing policies will stay the same (including cancellation as standard):

Before a trip:

  • Cover if a customer tests positive for coronavirus within 14 days before their holiday
  • Cover if they have been hospitalised within 28 days of their holiday
  • Cover if they are not allowed to board their flight as a result of a positive coronavirus test or raised temperature
  • The policy can be cancelled if the UK or the customer’s local area enters lockdown again within 14 days of purchase

During a trip:

  • Cover if they have checked in at their holiday accommodation but the property needs to close as a result of the coronavirus
  • Medical cover included if they catch coronavirus whilst abroad
  • Cover if it is medically necessary to bring the customer home
  • Cover for additional accommodation and travelling costs if they contract coronavirus whilst abroad

Antony Martin, Managing Director at ROCK Insurance Group says, “Due to the continuous updates to travel restrictions, we wanted to bring an option to market that allows travel against FCO advice as it is becoming difficult and expensive to administer all the changes and consumers need to have flexible products they can trust. While some insurance brands have launched products that allow travel against FCO advice, we are proud to be the first to provide this type of cover whilst simultaneously protecting travellers against COVID-related issues both pre-departure and during their trip. Our goal is for consumers to continue their holiday plans as normal which will be key to rebuilding the travel industry. We saw an opportunity to provide an integrated solution that would sit as part of our core offering and benefit our partners, potential new partners within the travel trade space and their customers. We are expecting an exceptionally strong conversion as it ultimately provides the customer with the protection and confidence they really need to travel.”

COVID-19 'Fit To Work' App To Help Organisations Protect Employees On Their Return To The Workplace

A new app developed by global travel and operational risk company, Anvil Group, prompts employees to self-certify that they are free of COVID-19 symptoms before coming into work, enabling employers to reduce the potential for infection in the workplace. 

Available on iOS and Android devices, the app takes employees through a series of questions relating to the main COVID-19 symptoms recognised by the UK National Health Service, and delivers an initial diagnosis based on the answers submitted. The app lets employees know whether they are deemed safe to enter their workplace or should stay at home and await further instructions. Employees' self-certification results are immediately sent to their employer, enabling them to remain compliant with health and safety legislation and identify any potential cases early.  
The app has been designed to help businesses, particularly those with at least 50 employees and limited HR or Health & Safety resources, who may be struggling to cope with managing the increased measures introduced, to ensure workforce safety.  
Matthew Judge, Group Managing Director, Anvil Group comments, "Even with social distancing measures, appropriate facilities for additional hand hygiene, and undertaking robust and regular workplace cleaning, government advice also stipulates that early identification of the infected and those in close contact with them, is essential. By developing the Fit to Work app, we're providing a solution that will help organisations to navigate a return to the workplace safely and with confidence."
"Employers need to take sensible steps to fulfil their duty of care and to document their assessment and adopted policies. Being able to demonstrate that they have considered the risks carefully and have taken sensible steps to mitigate those risks will be crucial evidence in defence of any subsequent claims. If someone becomes infected at work in the absence of evidence of such steps having been taken, the employer is vulnerable to being found in breach of duty and liable for losses arising."  

Healix International Announces SAP Concur Partnership To Help Employers Locate And Communicate With Employees During Critical Incidents

Leading international health and security provider, Healix International, has announced plans to integrate with SAP® Concur® solutions. SAP Concur is the world’s leading brand for travel, expense and invoice management solutions. The new version of the Healix Sentinel Tracker will leverage SAP Concur data to address the safety challenges facing employers with global workforces.

“In today’s world, with the persistent risk of high-impact localised security incidents occurring in even some of the safest environments, the pressure on security managers has never been higher,” explained Mike Webb, CEO of Healix International. “And one of the big challenges at times of critical incidents is finding an efficient and effective way to locate and communicate with employees that may be affected.”

“The Healix Sentinel Tracker tackles this hurdle by tapping into the wealth of health and security intelligence gathered by our network of experts on an hourly, daily and weekly basis. We will integrate with the SAP Concur Itinerary API, which delivers comprehensive traveller location data from Concur® Travel, Concur® TripLink, TripIt® from Concur and Concur® Request. The result is rapid location of employees that could be impacted by a critical incident and real-time communications to ascertain their safety and provide assistance at times of critical need.”

The Healix Sentinel Tracker will utilise the travel and employee profile information to effectively pinpoint the location of a company’s business travellers, expatriate workers and local nationals across the globe. Risk managers are therefore able to monitor and account for their globally mobile workforce via integration with the Healix Sentinel Travel Oracle mobile app.

With ‘Location Services’ activated by employees on the app, they receive alerts based on their physical location while risk managers are provided with an accurate, real-time global view of their employees on an interactive map and alerted of any incidents where they have employees in that location. Security alerts and notifications are pushed to employees and risk managers in a timely manner with incident level thresholds configurable according to each client’s specific requirements. A full audit trail of messages also is retained.

Alerts are published in real-time by Healix International’s intelligence analysts who monitor, corroborate and analyse breaking developments and potential threats as they happen. Impact radius or geo-fencing can be used to ensure that alerts and notifications are only targeted at employees in affected locations, reducing disengagement caused by issuing generic alerts irrelevant to other employees.

When a critical incident occurs, the geo-fencing feature can be used to rapidly identify all employees in the affected area, with contact made via the integrated communication capabilities to quickly ascertain each individual’s safety and wellbeing. Clients can use the platform to manage this process themselves or outsource the responsibility to Healix’s in-house security operations team.

Features of the Healix Sentinel Tracker include:

  • App-based tracking tool, providing greater accuracy in terms of location data
  • Will be integrated with:
    • Desktop tracking platform for risk managers
    • Healix medical and security content
    • Concur Travel, Concur TripLink, TripIt and Concur Request
  • Enhanced risk management controls to increase organisational situational awareness
  • Automated alert notifications and intelligence for employees and travellers 
    • Data set includes alerts via app, email and/or SMS and country briefing reports
    • Configurable thresholds for risk intelligence notifications
  • Employer notification of exposure in relation to an incident
  • Notification of an employee’s request for assistance
  • Fully integrated mass notification system for communication with all global employees
  • Geo-fencing and messaging capabilities
  • ‘Check-in’ feature that allows an employee or traveller to manually ‘check-in’ at a particular location 24/7, showing up on the map within the system.

The Healix Sentinel Tracker is complemented by the Healix Sentinel Critical Watch service as Mike Webb explained: “A critical incident affecting a global workforce could happen at any time of the day or night, anywhere in the world. But if an organisation does not have the in-house resource to provide around the clock monitoring, the employer’s duty of care can be seriously undermined. Healix Sentinel Critical Watch pairs with the Healix Sentinel Tracker to deliver 24/7 support on an employer’s behalf. In the event of a critical incident, our in-house Global Security Operations Centres will immediately identify employee exposure within an incident impact radius and proactively reach out to ascertain their safety on the company’s behalf.

iPMI Magazine Provider Network Directory September 2020

The September 2020 edition of the iPMI Magazine Provider Network e-Directory is out now, featuring over 70 pages of international private medical insurance and assistance company intelligence.

The iPMI Magazine network consists of a wide range of leading international medical payors and service providers, on call, 24/7 to assist you manage worldwide medical risks during a global pandemic.

The international medical network covers all sectors of the global medical insurance business, and you can use the directory to source new partners and service providers. Simply use the the contact details within the network directory to connect with new partners and customers. 

IPMI Market Network Sectors: IPMI, Assistance, Air Ambulance, Cost Containment And Claims Management, Funeral Directors, Ground Ambulance, Healthcare Insurance Management and Pharmacy Benefits Management.

    Enter full screen click the small rectangle above ↑

The IPMI industry use the iPMI Magazine Provider Network Directory to source the best information and data on international private medical insurance payors and providers. They may be searching for a new partner, looking for a contact number of a current provider, or researching the payor and provider market for future cross border network development.

Classifications include: IPMI, Assistance, Air Ambulance, Cost Containment And Claims Management, Funeral Directors, Ground Ambulance, Healthcare Insurance Management and Pharmacy Benefits Management.

Current Advertisers 

Click a company name below to visit their micro web site on iPMIM and learn more or download the brand new e-directory using the above link. To add your business to the e-directory and launch a micro website please write to David Bond, CIO, iPMIM on ipmi[at]











iPMI Magazine Speaks With Mary-Jo McDonald, Managing Director, Europe, Global Excel Management

iPMI Magazine's CEO, Christopher Knight, speaks with Mary-Jo McDonald, Managing Director for Europe at Global Excel Management. They discuss in detail how COVID-19 has affected the industry, life after lockdown and the impact on the travel industry for leisure, business and student travel markets.

Broadly speaking, can you tell us what steps Europe is taking towards life after lockdown?

We know that European countries’ response to this pandemic has varied in intensity – from closed borders to domestic travel restrictions. Overall, Europe is pulling together, and many countries are moving towards opening internal borders before the end of June. This first step will have a refreshing impact on travel, hospitality and education – a variety of industries will be operational. There will be limitations though, in this “new normal”, which we are gradually settling in to. Social distancing, protective face coverings and hand washing are already accepted at large in European society. Travel corridors or air-bridges are being considered, ground transportation will be permitted, and non-essential travel will be allowed.

We’re optimistic, as many clients and partners are preparing for this first step – continental Europe will be open for business very shortly. We remain realistic, knowing COVID-19 won’t disappear overnight. What we expect is that many Europeans will be asking questions and looking for reassurance, especially concerning their health as they travel, first within Europe and then abroad.

Has Global Excel seen a significant increase in assistance requests during this pandemic? What changed and how did you adapt to this unprecedented situation?

We have seen an increase in assistance requests, from business travellers having to modify schedules, expatriates worried about being able to keep their appointment with a physician, students needing to quickly access care and many wanting to speak with a practitioner in a “virtual” environment rather than face to face. One key concern was being able to respond within a reasonable amount of time. To do so, we quickly shifted to providing information, support and guidance online either via chat, text or email. This significantly reduced call wait-times while responding to requests. We prioritized different request-types – medical emergencies remain our top priorities. We also deployed a COVID-19-specific version of our digital health solution, StandbyMD. This is a self-serve virtual assistant which enables travellers to quickly self-assess their symptoms, then select the best care option. Responding with minimal down time, in several languages, across several time zones was a big challenge, but our team made it work, to the satisfaction of our clients and their members.

How has Global Excel Europe weathered this pandemic?

Early in February this year, we started reaching out to our clients with regular updates on measures we were taking as a response to developing situations. At that time, many countries reactions and directives were varied.

Our concern was two-fold: to ensure we could quickly respond to members returning to their homes – business travellers, tourists and students – but also to respond to medical emergencies and answer concerns while directing them to the best care available in their area. Our second priority was our own employee health, with over 95% of them working safely from home. Transferring our staff and ensuring our systems were up and running within only a few hours is a testament to our leadership’s agile planning and to the commitment of our team members. We were even able to outsource our services to other companies struggling with the sudden increase in volume and complexity.

As the gradual exit from lockdown is being coordinated, what should business and leisure travellers expect and how can they best prepare themselves?

As travel restrictions are loosening up across Europe, we expect that travellers in general will have to focus on low risk areas, seeking information from governments and using “travel bubbles/corridors”. This means additional wait times at airports for screenings and decontamination processes, with physical distancing and face coverings which will likely remain a requirement. Many vacation areas, educational institutions, restaurants and airports have already adapted to these new directives, as well as places of worship, offices and government buildings.

More than ever, we believe that travellers’ best protection is research – being aware of government advisories and looking closely at their travel and health policies, knowing and understanding the limitations, but also reaching out to travel experts to discuss options. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Has access to healthcare for students, travellers and others changed? If so, what are some must-haves going forward?

Polls across different countries indicate that many students and travellers have accessed healthcare using some form of digital solution. In some countries, telemedicine was used, and in other countries a mix of video, text and email communication to engage with physicians has been preferred.

We’ve seen a greater demand for our own digital health tool. Many members appreciate that they can self-serve and choose the type of care they prefer, wherever and whenever. Digital healthcare and choice will be key to responding to needs during a pandemic, but also during any cautious recovery period. These solutions ensure that physical distancing directives are met, minimizing infection risks while reducing wait times. The future is digital, and having a great solution that combines flexibility, personalized care and cashless billing options with worldwide coverage will be the new norm.

How can Global Excel help insurance and assistance companies and their members (business travellers, expats, students, etc)?

Global Excel combines four elements to ensure our clients and their members consistently benefit from the best available care options, no matter where they are: flexible, comprehensive healthcare solutions; world class costavoidance and cost-containment services; FastTrack, our cashless out-patient solution; fully customisable networks across Europe.

As a global enterprise, we can easily assist travellers, expats, international students and those seeking major medical treatment anywhere in the world: a unique, reliable and proven offering from your trusted partner – Global Excel.

Health Checklist To Help Airlines Implement ICAO COVID-19 Guidance

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) released an airline self-assessment health checklist to support the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO) Take-off: Guidance for Air Travel through the COVID-19 Public Health Crisis

The Take-off guidance is the global standard framework of risk-based temporary measures for governments and the air transport value chain for safe operations during the COVID-19 crisis.

“Safety is always the number one priority for air transport. And the challenges of COVID-19 have added a new dimension to our efforts. Developed with input from industry, public health authorities and governments, ICAO’s Take-off guidance is the global standard for safe operations. IATA’s self-assessment checklist is a practical implementation guide to help airlines comply,” said IATA’s Director General and CEO, Alexandre de Juniac.

“A harmonized approach to health is key not only to the recovery of civil aviation but also to ‘building back better,’ which is crucially important to ensuring the future resilience of the aviation network. IATA’s health checklist for airlines will be of importance in terms of providing momentum for the implementation of the ICAO Council Aviation Recovery Task Force (CART) recommendations, of which harmonization and resilience are the guiding principles,’’ said ICAO’s Council President, Salvatore Sciacchitano.

The IATA Health Safety Checklist for Airline Operators provides the standards and recommended practices (IHSARPs), associated guidance material and other supporting information necessary for an operator to self-assess. Sections cover:

  • Pre-arrival notification;
  • Check in;
  • Embarkation and Disembarkation;
  • Aircraft Cleaning;
  • Onboard Air Quality;
  • In-flight Operations;
  • Flight and Cabin Crew – General;
  • Crew Layover;
  • Airport Facilities.

The checklist is available at and can be used free of charge by interested airlines.

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