Big ideas are born from big data

by | Jun 17, 2021

Unisure’s Umatter International Private Medical Insurance (IPMI) plan is no exception

Big data is revolutionising the healthcare industry and constantly improving upon the level of service that the ‘connected patient’ receives. It empowers organisations to predict trends and manage risk more proactively. It’s also a rich source of information for anyone with a big idea and the inspiration to fill a gap in the market.

One person who understands this better than most is Niel Liebenberg, the Head of Health Operations of Unisure’s newly launched Umatter International Private Medical Insurance (IPMI) plan.

“When it comes to launching an innovative new medical insurance product in unchartered territory, data is king,” Liebenberg explains. “How you use your data and how you interpret it is the key to a deep understanding of how well your product will fill a gap and best serve a particular target market.”

Along with Daniel van der Merwe, the Head of Unisure’s IPMI division, Liebenberg was integrally involved in building the Umatter plan from the ground up. Van der Merwe and Liebenberg’s combined experience in the health insurance industry, particularly across Africa, stood them in good stead. So did listening to what clients and brokers said they really wanted from an international medical insurance plan and using big data to inform its feasibility.

The result? A truly unique, data-driven, dynamic IPMI solution that offers international cover, flexible structures and world-class benefits.

Liebenberg outlines three ways in which Umatter’s data-driven approach informs its competitive edge.

1. One size does NOT fit all 

Numerous large insurers have tried to take their local insurance model and implement it somewhere else without having expert insight of the market they’re entering. It doesn’t work because no market is exactly the same, particularly in Africa. Because Unisure is committed to setting up unique, fully regulated structures and products in each country it operates in, Liebenberg explains that big data and comprehensive research informs every decision along the way.

“Before we launched Umatter in Tanzania, we did our homework in finding the perfect strategic partner to align with (in this case, Phoenix Assurance),” he explains. “That way, when we started doing our feasibility studies and analysing the country-specific healthcare data available to us, we were able to capitalise on their local knowledge in order to truly understand and interpret the data and tailor our plan accordingly so that it fits the Tanzanian market well whilst still offering something new and unique.”

2. Doing a deep dive is key 

As Carly Fiorina, the former CEO of Hewlett-Packard, famously said, “The goal is to turn data into information, and information into insight”. When we first conceived of launching Umatter, our deep dive highlighted a few ‘non-negotiable’ prerequisites that we knew we had to address. Today, we’re proud of the fact that these insights and prerequisites have in fact turned into specific product benefits, giving us a dynamic edge and approach over numerous other competitors:

  • Bigger is better. We firmly believe that an insured member should never have to worry about available limits when it comes to life or limb threatening emergency treatment. This resulted in Umatter’s USD 5 000 000 in-patient limit.
  • We’re all different. That’s why Umatter has 63 different pricing components to support maximum flexibility.
  • We’re here when you need us most. Service is key and the presence of 24/7 customer care, 365 days a year, plays a massive role in our clients’ and members’ loyalty and peace of mind.
  • Quick and easy, but highly efficient. Ease of access to healthcare is important, which is why Unisure partnered with Smart Applications to provide our members with an integrated, real-time biometric solution.

3. Reducing the likelihood of fraud, waste and abuse

Fraud, waste and abuse (FWA) is unfortunately quite common in the healthcare industry. By employing intuitive data-driven models, we’re able to proactively identify suspicious claiming trends. Unisure’s data models, coupled with our biometric solutions, not only support the efficient identification of FWA, but also mitigates the financial risks as intervention is pro-active and immediate.

While it’s true that data is the key to unlocking new ideas and new ways of doing business, the insights you glean from big data are only valuable if you’re able to translate them into real benefits for your customers. We believe that our approach to insurance is as dynamic as our product and we look forward to revolutionising international private medical insurance every step of the way.

Here’s to being different, because Umatter.

For more information, click through to our Umatter and Umatter Core pages.