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International Private Medical Insurance Magazine Provider Network Directory July 2021

The July 2021 edition of the International Private Medical Insurance Magazine Provider Network Directory, is out now, featuring over 80 pages of international private medical insurance and medical 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, Insurance Technology, Healthcare Insurance Management and Pharmacy Benefits Management.

    Enter full screen click the small rectangle above ↑

The IPMI market 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]ipmimagazine.com

PAYORS AND PROVIDERS IN FOCUS:

IPMI

ASSISTANCE

AIR AMBULANCE

COST CONTAINMENT AND CLAIMS MANAGEMENT

FUNERAL DIRECTORS

INSURANCE TECHNOLOGY

 

 

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HDI Global Specialty Enters International Private Medical Insurance (IPMI) Market With Generali Hire

Haden has over 20 years’ A&H experience, including various underwriting roles at AXA, Collinson Group and most recently Generali Global Health, where he was responsible for the Italian insurer’s global IPMI portfolio.

HDI Global Specialty’s move into international PMI is part of a longer term growth plan which is designed to diversify its portfolio by product, geographical scope, production and distribution. The insurer’s expectation is that IPMI will make a significant contribution to its A&H portfolio.

Announcing the hire, A&H underwriting manager Kieran Morrin said: “HDI Global Specialty is on a path of significant controlled growth, and our Accident & Health line is a key part of this. Ben has an excellent reputation in the IPMI market and his appointment is another step of our planned expansion.”

Ben Haden added: “I’m pleased to be joining HDI Global Specialty’s A&H team, especially at a time when it’s looking to grow its footprint in the market.”

The new PMI and IPMI cover is available across the spectrum of insureds, from individuals through to multinational corporations, placed via brokers or directly with agents.

HDI Global Specialty SE is a specialty lines insurer. It is a joint venture of Hannover Re and HDI Global SE, both strong and established players in the insurance and reinsurance market, which are part of the Talanx Group. HDI Global Specialty’s focus is on writing agency and specialty insurance business. With operations in 9 locations and access to a global network of more than 150 countries through the HDI Global SE network. HDI Global Specialty also enjoys the same financial strength as HDI Global SE.

As an industrial lines insurer, HDI Global SE (HDI) meets the needs of SMEs, industrial companies and corporate customers with insurance solutions that are specifically tailored to their requirements. In addition to HDI's prominent position in the German and broader European market, the company also has operations in more than 150 countries through foreign branch offices, subsidiary and peer companies, and network partners. The company is thus able to offer its customers local policies for their global operations, which ensure that the established service and insurance protection is extended for all covered risks worldwide.

HDI Global SE is a company in the Industrial Lines Division of the Talanx Group. Approximately 3.700 employees in this division generated gross written premiums of approx. EUR 6.7 billion in the year 2020.

The rating agency Standard & Poor’s has given the Talanx Primary Group a financial strength rating of A+/stable (strong). Talanx AG is listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange in the SDAX.

For additional information, please go to: www.hdi-specialty.com

Hannover Re, with gross premium of more than EUR 22 billion in 2019, is the third-largest reinsurer in the world. It transacts all lines of property & casualty and life & health reinsurance and is present on all continents with around 3,300 staff. Established in 1966, the Hannover Re Group today has a network of more than 140 subsidiaries, branches, and representative offices worldwide. The Group's German business is written by the subsidiary E+S Rück. The rating agencies most relevant to the insurance industry have awarded both Hannover Re and E+S Rück outstanding financial strength ratings: Standard & Poor's AA-"Very Strong" and A.M. Best A+ "Superior".

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iPMI Magazine Speaks with Global Excel Indonesia’s Steven Om on Brand-New Hospital Express Discharge Program

In this exclusive iPMI Magazine interview, Christopher Knight, CEO, iPMI Magazine, meets with Steven Om, General Manager of Global Excel Indonesia. They discuss in detail the key benefits of the brand-new Hospital Express Discharge Program, designed to drastically reduce both the waiting period and the paperwork associated with the discharge process for patients leaving Indonesian hospitals.

Tell us about Global Excel Indonesia:

Global Excel Indonesia was originally an ISOS organization. Global Excel acquired the company as a joint venture in 2017. Today, as part of the Global Excel family, we offer customer-centric insurance solutions to individuals and corporations in Indonesia. Global Excel Indonesia specializes in navigating the complex processes of Third-Party Administration, comprehensive claims management, assistance, and cost containment.

What is the Hospital Express Discharge Program (HEDP), and what does it aim to accomplish?

Our brand-new Hospital Express Discharge Program (HEDP) aims to simplify the traditionally complex discharge process for any type of patient admitted to an Indonesian hospital, while significantly reducing the normally lengthy wait times they experience once discharged.

How will reaching those goals help improve things for patients, payors, and providers?

For patients, the HEDP means that once they’ve been discharged by their attending doctor, they’ll be able to leave the hospital in an hour or less, instead of the usual 4 to 8 hours. It also means less paper-work – a lot less: no reimbursement forms to fill out, and no back-and-forth to figure out what’s covered and for how much.

For payers, it means an improved customer journey, in particular with the hospital claim process, whose relevance is amplified in these challenging pandemic times. This leads to higher member satisfaction, retention rates and new sales opportunities.

For providers, they’ll appreciate the simple administration process – a single complete payment from the payer rather than 2 different payments from the patient and payer for uncovered and covered amounts.  This will help with billing reconciliation and improve the overall hospital experience for their patient.

Is the HEDP unique in its field? If not, what does it do that others don’t?

Most insurance companies usually offer some sort of service related to hospital discharges. Some focus on document preparation, others concentrate on logistics while still others offer streamlined payment services. As far as we know, we’re the only company to combine all of these and more to offer a very simple, very sure, and very speedy discharge where all parties are satisfied with the win-win-win outcome.

What inspired the creation of the HEDP?

At Global Excel Indonesia, we’ve always found feedback – from members, clients, and providers – to be extremely valuable. So, we analyzed the hospital discharge process, a known pain point for all involved parties, to see where we could make improvements. From our desire to simplify and improve this process, the HEDP was born. 

Will the HEDP stay regional, or will it expand beyond Indonesia?

For now, our expertise rests upon our familiarity with the Indonesian healthcare system, so that’s our current focus. However, we’re confident in the success of the HEDP, and will certainly be open to expanding this service throughout the greater region.

 

 

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iPMI Magazine Speaks With Dr. Ameet Deshmukh M.D, Chief Medical Officer, New Frontier Group

In this interview, Nicole Bonfiglio, brand ambassador at New Frontier Group, sat down with Dr. Ameet Deshmukh M.D. to discuss his new role as Chief Medical Officer at New Frontier Group.

To start off, please tell me about your medical background and your career journey.

I grew up in St. Louis, Missouri, and graduated high school at the top of my class. When I was in 11th grade, I was a part of a program in which I shadowed doctors at Washington University in St. Louis, resulting in my love for medicine. I attended medical school at University of Missouri-Kansas City where they have a six-year medical program, meaning I did both my undergraduate and my M.D. in six years rather than the usual eight years. It is very intense, and you only have one month off a year with no other breaks. From day one I was shadowing a doctor during their clinical rounds every week, which gave me a hands-on education. After graduating, I completed a three-year residency in emergency medicine at an inner-city trauma hospital, followed by training in hyperbaric medicine and wound care. I have been a practicing Emergency Medicine Physician for nearly twenty years.

You have just accepted a role as the new Chief Medical Officer for NFG: tell me about what you are hoping to accomplish and contribute to NFG and their clients. What are you most excited about in this new role?

I think I am here to bridge the gap between business and medicine in a way. I will be able to support people in different levels of the organization, like aiding in arranging medical transports, or talking to certain medical providers about patient information that other members of the team might not typically have access. For example, it might be difficult for a client service representative to reach a treating surgeon at a major hospital, but if I call, I should be able to bridge this gap. I also look forward to being a resource for our clients, conversing with their medical team, assisting in providing positive outcomes for their policyholders.

What am I most excited about? The team. That was the most unknown for me, but they are fabulous people, and they are brilliant. I do not think that I have ever met an executive or CEO that is as strong as Gitte Bach. She is so dynamic and can approach anyone. She can be tough, she can be yielding, but she knows this sector inside and out. She really wants to know all the details and who has the best ideas for a better solution. She is accountable to the insurers, her clients, the policyholders, and each member of the NFG staff. I have joined NFG to add a clinical spin to things, and it is very exciting. I love business and business development; I have always had a passion for it.

My mantra is “we put the clients first”, and with a business like NFG, we have lots of different clients, all with very high service expectations. Fulfilling everyone's expectations while providing the best outcomes will help provide quality care, everyone will be happy, and we will develop a good sustainable quality product that NFG can expand.

 

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iPMI Magazine Speaks With Sumit Gaurav, CEO, Roy Medical Assistance

In this exclusive iPMI Magazine interview, Christopher Knight, CEO, iPMI Magazine, met with Sumit Gaurav, CEO, Roy Medical Assistance. They discussed Roy Medical Assistance and its operations in India, and its emergency medical assistance work across Asia, the Middle East and some key tourist destinations like the Maldives.

Please introduce yourself and background in the international medical assistance market:

My name is Sumit Gaurav and I am the CEO of Roy Medical Assistance.

I started my career working with a hospital in India. I lead the international business development for European, American, and Latin American markets. At the same time, I saw that Asia needs a local international TPA because some insurers and assistance companies, out-side of Asia, were not paying the hospitals. Day by day hospitals were blocking international Insurance companies and they needed a local office so they can communicate and take the payment guarantee. At that time many international travellers, expats and students were facing problems for cashless treatments.

In 2016 we discussed this, with the one of the largest hospitals in Asia, explaining that we can handle international claims through a local office. But it was not easy to establish the faith with the hospitals. So, in 2016, I went on to create an innovative, solutions-oriented company offering multiple customizable international medical assistance services.

I founded Roy Medical Assistance as an International TPA and Medical Assistance company in Asia. Since that time, we have contracted with some of the largest group of hospitals and insurers to meet their evolving healthcare needs.

Our goals are help to providers and consequently payors, by processing theirs claims as our top priority and paid the hospitals on time.

Who is Roy Medical Assistance, and what does the company provide?

Roy Medical Assistance is acting as an international TPA and provides medical and claims assistance services in Asia, acting as a local guarantor to over 5000 network hospitals.

  • Single contact number for all insured queries and claims assistance.
  • Rapid access to our network of medical facilities.
  • Step by step case management for out- patient and in patient.
  • 24 hours Alarm centre with caring, trained co-ordinators who can immediately validate the policy cover and arrange direct settlement facilities with chosen medical providers.

Typically speaking, who are your clients?

Great question! Our clients are travellers, students, diplomats, business travellers, NGO’s and long stay expatriate families. To enable access to international medical treatment abroad, we work with international medical insurers, assistance companies, private corporations, hospitals, and medical transportation businesses.

Roy Medical Assistance provides international medical assistance services in India, Nepal, China, Thailand, Cambodia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Singapore, Hong Kong, Maldives, UAE, Turkey and Myanmar. What challenges do these regions pose?

We partner with hospitals in our network in all those areas, but sometimes we faced with the challenge on a small island, in the jungle plus hard to reach mountain ranges where medical facilities do not exist. If any patient is in a remote region, we can provide our best solutions to access the best and most relevant treatment and hospitals in that geographic region.

As example, we face many challenges in the Maldives. Here is a 1000 small islands with no medical facilities and no doctors available. We have sea ambulances and when we receive any request our team reach may reach those destinations within 30-45 minutes. We then provide the first aid treatment where necessary and then evacuate the patient to a network hospital provider.

COVID-19 has grounded many airlines and put a stop to international leisure travel. How has your business handled these problems?

As we all know, COVID 19 has grounded many airlines which resulted in a great impact on all our lives. Unfortunately, most of the travel industry and lot of the travel insurance sector has been severely affected. But our services are 24/7, 365 days a year, as hospitals and other necessary medical services providers are online to track and handle the situation up to mark of client satisfaction.

There are currently over 80 million expatriates around the world. What work are you doing for the expatriate market?

During COVID 19, many expatriates living with their family are fearing the current situation. But we can assure clients, whatever the issue, Roy Medical Assistance can provide medical assistance anytime, and anywhere. Frequently we are speaking with hospital management and our clients if any issues arise, we can provide our best medical assistance solutions.

Can you walk us through the features and benefits of your provider network?

You can read all about our business on our website: https://roymedicalassistance.net. Please feel free to contact me directly to discuss custom medical assistance services for the Asia Pacific region.

Technology is playing an ever more increasing role in the international insurance market. How are you leveraging the power of technology to improve patient care, and reduce the bottom line to the payor?

Correct. Technology is playing a very important role in our sector to improve patient care and reduce the bottom line of payor. In that area’s our team is working hard day and night:

  • 24 hours alarm centre is fully operational during COVID-19;
  • We have claims and payment teams, they can verify all claims accordingly to the insureds policy conditions and we pay to the hospitals within agreed time;
  • We have our own medical team in our assistance centre who help the patient and make the medical report that international insurers will understand, in order to approve the further treatment without delay;
  • Very soon we are launching reimbursement software where the patient can upload all documents and within 1 week our team will verify.

In the next 5 years, how will the international medical assistance market develop?

Development areas and opportunities include global mobility, communications, and time management. Supporting the technology and ad hoc information is essential to the success of business.

Last, but not least, if you could live anywhere, on land, or at sea, where would it be?

I always want to live in my home country, India. But during my life journey, I want to travel the whole world to see different countries, cultures, living styles, and meet new people.

 

 

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Allianz Partners Launches New Serious Illness International Medical Insurance Plan

Allianz Partners has announced a brand-new plan for private and corporate customers, providing cover for a number of the most common serious illnesses. 

The plan gives customers access to specialist hospitals, along with medical case management at every step in the process, from Allianz Partners’ own medical professionals. There is also significant support for customers when it comes to helping them through the stress of dealing with a serious illness, including counselling, and assistance with travel arrangements, accommodation and the paperwork associated with an unexpected serious illness.

Designed and sold through the company’s international health brand, Allianz Care, the new plan – called Avenue – gives adults and their children across Europe an affordable, care-focused option for treatment in the event of ever becoming seriously ill. Flexibility and the ability to access international medical expertise are core to the design of Avenue. Customers can choose to receive treatment for the condition along with a full suite of supports or, instead, receive a lump sum to help them through this period financially.

Allianz Partners has mobilized an extensive international network of carefully-selected private and public hospitals around the world that specialise in care for these particular conditions. Depending on the plans selected, if they opt for treatment, customers can choose to go to a specialist hospital in the country they’re living in, or to travel abroad for treatment, giving them access to the very best international medical care and advice across twenty countries. These countries include South Africa, Singapore, France, Germany, UK, Switzerland, Austria and Hong Kong.

An expert in providing comprehensive international private medical insurance, Allianz Partners developed Avenue following extensive market and customer research that highlighted the need for a standalone international insurance product covering serious illnesses.

Paula Covey, Chief Marketing Officer Health at Allianz Partners, said: “We’ve listened to our brokers and customers and developed this product as a direct result of an unmet need. We’re passionate about creating innovative and flexible healthcare solutions that meet customer needs, while also recognising that we have to consider the impact on their mental health as well as their physical health. These are individual people who suddenly find themselves in a very scary and unexpected situation, whether it affects themselves or one of their family members. We’ll help them to get the support they need to deal with the stress, anxiety and logistics, as well as helping them to get the physical treatment that they need. Our aim is to help them get the best possible outcome.

“We’ve drawn on decades of expertise in international medical insurance (iPMI) and added our latest learnings around support for mental health to create Avenue. While not a replacement for full private medical insurance, it is an affordable solution for individuals who want to safeguard themselves and/or their children against serious illness. Avenue is also an attractive proposition for organisations who want to provide serious illness cover to their employees.”

Avenue covers 12 types of serious medical condition – five illnesses that impact both adults and children (including cancer, bone marrow transplant and neurosurgery); four specific to adults only (including coronary artery angioplasty/stenting, bypass surgery and living organ transplant); and three that are specific to children (including Kawasaki syndrome and meningitis/encephalitis).

Central to the Avenue proposition is end-to-end support for customers when it comes to travel arrangements and getting expert treatment for their illness. Each case is fully overseen, monitored and managed by a dedicated medical professional. Customers who become seriously ill are offered information on specialist hospitals to treat their illness, as well as being assigned a medical case manager to assist with all administrative aspects of their treatment journey including travel, accommodation and associated paperwork. This means that customers don’t need to spend time and energy researching or worrying about practical arrangements.

Avenue provides:

  • Cover for the medical costs to treat the 12 types of illnesses covered, or to receive a lump sum payment
  • The option to receive treatment in-country or overseas, depending on plan selected. Both public and private hospitals are available, chosen for their medical expertise
  • Second medical opinion to confirm the original diagnosis
  • Medical case management through the entire treatment
  • Counselling as well as legal and financial advice
  • Advice, hospital appointment booking, booking of flights and accommodation, payment of medical bills

To learn more about Avenue for individuals and families visit: www.allianzcare.com/personal-avenue.html.  Group customers can learn more here: www.allianzcare.com/business-avenue.html.

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iPMI Magazine Provider Network Directory June 2021

The June 2021 edition of the iPMI Magazine Provider Network e-Directory is out now, featuring over 80 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, Insurance Technology, Healthcare Insurance Management and Pharmacy Benefits Management.

    Enter full screen click the small rectangle above ↑

The IPMI market 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]ipmimagazine.com

PAYORS AND PROVIDERS IN FOCUS:

IPMI

ASSISTANCE

AIR AMBULANCE

COST CONTAINMENT AND CLAIMS MANAGEMENT

FUNERAL DIRECTORS

INSURANCE TECHNOLOGY

 

 

Read more...

Healthcare International (HCI) Announces Management Buyout Backed By Prefequity

Healthcare International (“HCI”), the leading international private medical insurance MGA for expats, is pleased to announce that it has been acquired by its management team led by Ian Wood and backed by Prefequity.

As part of the transaction Prefequity will provide HCI with additional capital to accelerate its growth. This will enable HCI to strengthen its management team further, expand and diversify its product range, and enhance its strategic partnerships with intermediaries and insurers.

This transaction provides a successful exit for the founders, Shane Younger, Christopher Percival and Kieran Linehan, who have retired from the business after 17 years of service.

HCI delivers a range of comprehensive, flexible and competitively priced insurance products for expatriates, globally mobile workers and travelers in over 100 countries worldwide.

HCI aims to provide policyholders and brokers with high-quality policies backed by market-leading service levels including 24-hour, 365-days-a-year assistance, wherever they are in the world.

New Management Team

HCI will be led by CEO Ian Wood, who has been with the Company for 18 months. Ian, a qualified chartered management accountant, has over 30 years’ experience in insurance and broader financial services with a proven track record of delivering both growth and robust governance. Prior to HCI Ian spent 7 years at First Central Insurance as Finance Director and Board Member as it evolved from entrepreneurial start-up to one of the leading independent UK insurers.

Supporting Ian will be Andy Kirby as COO. Andy has 30-years experience in the general insurance sector and has held many senior roles including: Head of Underwriting and Claims (GRE/AXA), Head of Insurance (Virginmoney), Placement Broker (HSBC/Marsh), and Senior Risk & Regulatory Consultant (PwC / Deloitte). Andy has recently been appointed a Justice of the Peace for the Criminal Court in Suffolk, England.

About Prefequity

Prefequity is an independently owned investment firm that provides a blend of debt and equity to support the ambitions of high-quality management teams.

Prefequity has a successful track record of investing in UK-based businesses looking to execute international growth strategies.

Ian Wood, CEO at HCI, said “We are delighted to have secured Prefequity’s backing for our growth plans. This will enable us to bring new and improved products to the market to deliver even better value and service for our policyholders. We look forward to announcing further details in the near future.”

Johnny Carew Pole, Partner at Prefequity, said “We have been impressed with the resilience and flexibility of HCI in the face of the pandemic. HCI is assembling a highly experienced and proven leadership team to drive the business forward and deliver a market-leading insurance service for expats. Ian has done a fantastic job to date and we are delighted to be backing him to execute the next phase in HCI’s journey.”

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What Is Happening To Migrant Workers? You May Be Surprised

Ian Youngman, author of the IPMI market leading report, International Health Insurance 2021, reads the 148 page LABOUR MIGRATION IN ASIA: IMPACTS OF THE COVID-19 CRISIS AND THE POST-PANDEMIC FUTURE report from the OECD, so you do not have to.

The report is full of figures but far more useful are the comments and trends. I will pick out a few pointers that jumped out and attempt to interpret them.

PAST and PRESENT

With the spread of the pandemic, a number of factors combined to reduce deployment of labour migrants in Asia. Asian countries introduced visa issuance and border restrictions to control the spread of the pandemic. Some Asian countries suspended deployment to destinations affected by the pandemic. Business closures and slowdowns led to reduced demand. Commercial flight schedules limited opportunities to travel even when other restrictions were not in place.

Most destination countries have been slow to reopen so this continued well into 2021.

RELATED READING: International Health Insurance (IPMI) 2021

The main form of migration from Asian countries is temporary labour migration, usually directed to non-OECD countries. In 2019 the flow of workers for employment abroad reached 4. 9 million. The main driver behind a rebound in 2019 was a sharp increase in the flows between South Asia and Saudi Arabia.

The Philippines remains the top Asian origin country of overseas workers. In 2019, more than 1.5 million OFWs were deployed.

Bangladesh is the second main country of origin with 700,000. 2017. Pakistan was third in 2019, following a sharp increase in the number of registered workers for overseas (+63%) compared to 2018. India also saw an increase in worker emigration (+8%) but the total reached in 2019 (370,000) remains low compared to the levels observed in the past 10 years. Outflows from Viet Nam have steadily increased since 2012, by around 10,000 per year, and stood just above 150,000 in 2019. Viet Nam is now confirmed as one of the top origin countries.

The number of Asian temporary migrants going to Japan and the Republic of Korea, the two Asian countries belonging to the OECD, has been increasing sharply in recent years.

Few think of Japan or Korea as destinations for expats.

Highly skilled migrants coming to OECD countries have increasingly come from Asian origin countries. Indian nationals dominate the United States, the main temporary permit for skilled migrant workers,

Few think of the USA as an expat destination needing IPMI.

The myth that educated Westerners become expats while only poorly educated Asians are temporary workers ignores the massive educational advances in Asia, Africa, and China. Some companies need to amend their literature and marketing messages.

One of the main components of international migration is for study. The number of international students in the world increased by 4% in 2018 and reached 5.6 million. Among them, 2.9 million were Asian, which represents another rise of Asia’s share as a region of origin, to 52%. Asia has also gained share as a region of destination in recent years; in 2018, its 800,000 international students enrolled comprised 14% of the global total. China is the top Asian destination and expands its lead in the region every year. In 2019, more than 260,000 students were enrolled in the PRC’s tertiary education institutions. Japan is the other major Asian destination country and also sees a steadily growing number of international students (183,000 in 2018). Further behind, the Republic of Korea follows with 85,000 international students in 2018 (+20%). Malaysia ranks fourth and is the only major country to see a decline. In 2019, Malaysia hosted only 82,000 international students, compared to 124,000 in 2016. In Singapore and in India, enrollments are stable at around 50,000 international students.

Asia has always been the main region of origin of international students in OECD countries. The number of Asian students enrolled in OECD universities jumped 8% in 2018 to approach 2 million, more than half of total enrollment.

Too few IPMI providers have student policies, rather than offering standard IPMI ones. The market is often left to specialists. There is an assumption that is European or American students going within Europe or Asians to Europe. Few think of the destinations above. Why not a rolling monthly student policy for the duration of their course with options to continue if they stay in the country to work?

FUTURE

Short-term policy changes and longer-term structural shifts in demographics and the nature of work were already forcing planners to consider how to prepare for new challenges. Medium and longer-term factors will help shape labour migration in Asia in the next 15 years. Underlying trends could reshape the map—some of these are certain, while others are less sure.

From 2022 Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, the main destination of labour migrants, may see slack demand. The limited reserve of skills in the GCC countries means that nationalisation of the labour market will likely only affect a part of deployment; these countries cannot wean themselves from their reliance on migrant workers in the short term.

But political pressure to give good jobs to locals and only keep the scud jobs for worker migrants is heavy in some countries. There are too many global IPMI providers in the Gulf region so static or reduced demand and squeeze on price will hit those that do not offer cover to locals hardest.

The picture for EU countries presents a mixed situation. Lower demand post-pandemic in EU OECD countries could limit migration opportunities for Asian migrants. But more proactive recruitment of international students and highly qualified workers could lead to an uptick in flows from Asia, particularly to European countries with an ageing and declining population that need temporary or permanent immigrants to work.

China is actively pursuing a transformation from an export-oriented, low skilled, and labour- intensive economy to a science, technology, and innovation-based economy, a transition that demands highly skilled workers. To this end, the government is introducing specific schemes and policies to attract educated and skilled international migrants, as well as PRC professionals working overseas. In 2018, the PRC introduced a new visa category for foreign talent to support the PRC’s proactive research and development strategy.

China has become a major destination for international students. It has multiplied the number of scholarships for international students as well.

Singapore is another non-OECD country attracting qualified foreign talent. In addition to creating special work visa categories targeting researchers and scholars, a government agency facilitates outreach to skilled foreigners and potential Singaporean returnees including students, highly skilled professionals and workers, entrepreneurs, and investors.

By 2035, the PRC and other non-OECD countries in Asia may become magnets for top global talent, inducing talent to move, stay and raise families, attracted by the quality of life, better economic prospects and salaries compared to OECD countries. As the competition for talent gets tougher, OECD countries may find it increasingly difficult to attract or retain skilled workers, while remaining reliant on immigrants to supplement their labour force in the face of aging populations.

Many companies are targeting China, fewer target Singapore, but how are they covering this new generation that moves there as expats but never goes home?

YOU CAN WORK ANYWHERE

Digitisation and the increasing cross-border movement of data and information facilitate new forms of the global division of labour and migration in which work is independent of any requirement to be in a specific physical location.

Virtual migration is a particularly growing phenomenon as online and remote work platforms are enabling people to perform work for overseas employers under the legal, temporal, and cultural frameworks of destination countries without having to move country.

Another growing phenomenon arising from technological advances, digital infrastructure developments, and new employment models is digital nomadism—a novel mode of lifestyle-centric and location-independent labour migration in which workers (digital nomads) combine online labour and potential mobility to maintain a lifestyle of permanent travel, working remotely in cultural and nature hotspots around the world. Asian countries, and especially Southeast Asian countries (e.g., Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, and Singapore) tend to be among the most popular destinations for digital nomads.

Some countries have introduced remote work, freelance, or digital nomad visas (or some extensions in their existing types of visa to accommodate remote workers), including Australia, Georgia, and Thailand in Asia and the Pacific; Germany, Czech Republic, Portugal, Norway, and Estonia in Europe; and Costa Rica and Mexico in Latin America.

This produces a new type of expat- one who is from Country A, works for a company in Country B but lives as a digital nomad in Country C. Most countries encouraging digital nomads demand that they have international health insurance while others demand they join the state health insurance scheme. So there is a demand for top up as well as standard IPMI.

As digital nomads develop from to include individuals working for a corporation in a third country insurers will have to change their thoughts and wording on local care, repatriation and cross-border care.

RELATED READING: International Health Insurance (IPMI) 2021

 

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Healix International Announces Management Changes

Healix International has announced the appointment of Mike Webb as Chairman of Healix International. Taking over Mike Webb’s role is Charlie Butcher, currently Commercial Director of the business, who has been promoted to the position of Chief Executive Officer.

By becoming Chairman, Mike Webb, who has been Healix International’s CEO for four years, will continue to be actively involved in the company’s ongoing activity. Under his leadership, Healix International has significantly improved its financial performance as well as growing its range of products and services and has seen a very strong commercial performance despite the challenges of Covid, with the Company consistently driving innovation and fostering a customer centric culture.

Charlie Butcher becomes CEO of Healix International from June 2021. Charlie joined the Company in 2006 as Finance Director and was promoted to Commercial Director in 2019. Over the last two years he has achieved considerable sales success in Europe, the USA and Asia Pacific. 

“I am very much looking forward to this exciting new role, building on my extensive experience of the Healix International business over the last 15 years”, said Charlie Butcher.  “More than ever, companies are looking for the safest and most effective ways to get their employees working abroad again. It falls under a company’s duty of care to ensure the personnel they send abroad receive the best possible support measures to enable this to happen.

“Local security and medical facilities can vary dramatically across borders, and employers need to know their workforce has a support network in place. That is where Healix International comes in. Healix medical and security teams work closely together to deliver an integrated risk management and assistance operation, helping to fulfil employers’ duty of care responsibilities.

“I look forward to continuing to oversee the onward commercial success of Healix and working closely with Mike Webb and the Executive Board and feel very confident that we have the right team in place to achieve on-going success.”

Mike Webb added: “I am very proud of the part I have played as a member of the team that has enabled Healix International to deliver profitable growth and be seen as one of the most successful medical and security risk management companies. Healix is a great business that has a proven track record for delivering high quality services to many blue chip companies and government organisations.  I look forward to working with Charlie and the rest of the Executive Board in my new role as Chairman, building on great foundations.”

“We would like to thank Mike for his strong leadership and contribution to the success of Healix International” said Peter Mason, Founder.  “As for Charlie, he brings talent, commitment, vision and years of solid experience to the job. I wish them both much success in their respective future roles and challenges.”

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