COVID insurance claims hit P2B

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    The new coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic-related claims paid by the insurance industry as of September 30 have amounted to around P2.3 billion, according to a statement released by the Insurance Commission (IC) yesterday.

    The IC said that in a follow-up survey conducted from May to September, the four industries regulated and supervised by the commission have reported that they have paid an aggregate amount of P1.98 billion in COVID-19-related claims.

    This figure is in addition to the P326.95 million reported in its first survey.

    Further, the life insurance industry, non-life insurance industry, mutual benefit associations (MBAs), and health maintenance organizations (HMOs) have paid P1.81 billion in contractual obligations and P284.43 million in ex gratia payments, according to the second survey.

    “The reported payment of approximately P2 billion in COVID-19-related claims by the four regulated entities (based on the second survey) is a clear testament of such regulated entities’ financial resiliency notwithstanding the challenges posed by the pandemic. Such financial resiliency is amplified by the fact that some regulated entities have even gone above and beyond their contractual obligations by paying ex gratia settlements to our fellow Filipinos,” Dennis Funa, insurance commissioner, said in the statement.

    “This commission is confident that the staggering five-fold increase (from the first survey) in payment of COVID-19-related claims will serve to inspire consumer confidence in the four respondent industries and educate our fellow Filipinos of the benefits of availing the insurance and HMO products sold by said regulated industries,” he added.

    The IC said that on a per benefit basis, the biggest portion of the claims paid were hospitalization benefits, with in-patient and out-patient benefits registering 62 percent of the total COVID-19-related claims recorded in the second survey.

    The breakdown for the figure covered in the May to September survey is as follows: out-patient benefit claims paid: P637.92 million; in-patient benefit claims paid: P588 million; death benefits claims paid: P553.31 million; other benefits paid: P148.4 million; personal accident benefits paid: P20.64 million; medical reimbursement benefits paid: P9.49 million; hospital income benefits paid: P7.04 million; travel benefits paid: P6.03 million; critical illness benefits paid: P4.13 million and hospitalization allowance benefits paid: P372,550. (A. Celis)