Aviva launches new group critical illness product

Nia Williams

March 15, 2010

The group critical illness market has experienced the fastest annual premium income growth out of all group risk products over the past few years. Aviva’s product has been introduced in direct response to an increased customer demand for lower cost employee benefits to include as part of a flexible benefits scheme. The product can also be purchased on a voluntary or company paid basis.

Customers can choose from two levels of cover. Either a standard list of illnesses and procedures, or alternatively they can opt for an extended list. Benefit is paid up to five times the employee’s salary, subject to a maximum of £500,000 (gross).

To reduce administration and simplify the application process, a pre-existing condition exclusion applies to the product. This removes the need for full medical underwriting.

Commenting, Steve Bridger, head of group risk, Aviva UK Health said: “As a business, we’re committed to the group risk market and our recent product and service enhancements mean that we now offer some of the most competitive group income protection and group life terms in the market. Our entry to the group CI market is a natural move which will give intermediaries a wider choice of provider.

“The addition of group critical illness means that we believe we now offer the widest choice of products amongst the key group risk providers. With this range of services also comes a breadth of knowledge and we’re already applying best practice learnings across business areas. For example, we’re using clinical knowledge from our specialist private health insurance claims teams to assist our group income protection business. Similarly, tele-interviewing was an approach we took from our individual income protection business and applied it to group risk. We recognise that employers need an integrated service that responds to their individual business needs and I believe that this expert knowledge and broad choice of products means that Aviva is now best placed to offer exactly this.”

Aviva’s group critical illness is designed to pay employees a cash lump sum on diagnosis of a pre-defined list of critical illnesses or after the employee has undergone one of a list of surgical procedures and then survives for at least 14 days. The money can then be used however the employee sees fit, for example to help cover a mortgage or bills, to help pay for treatment or make adjustments to their home.

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