Affordable financial security for health concerns


    PEOPLE today are living longer than ever but while life expectancies have increased, major illnesses still kill numerous people everyday. In the Philippines, cancer, stroke, and heart attack are the 3 major critical illnesses that affect the population. More than just being a deadly disease, these 3 illnesses can also wreak havoc on a family’s finances, leaving them in debt as the patient undergoes treatment just to recover.

    Insurance plans help alleviate the financial cost of these health crises, but the popularity of insurance may have grown over the years, but it still remains low in the country.

    “Insurance awareness for Filipinos is just 22 percent. More worryingly, 82 percent of Filipinos don’t have insurance. Furthermore, that doesn’t mean that the remaining 18 percent have sufficient coverage in their insurance. Out of those who don’t have insurance, 66 percent say that they don’t have the budget to pay for it,” Alok Roongta, AXA Philippines Chief of Retail Propositions said.

    Insurance company AXA hopes to address this issue with the launch of a new product, the AXA Health Start. Aimed primarily at young professionals and families, AXA Health Start and Health Start Family aimed at giving its clients coverage for the 3 critical illnesses at an affordable cost.

    With the new Health Start product, AXA hopes that more people could see the value that an insurance service would give them, especially in times of financial need during a health issue. The product offers coverage of P1 million for a monthly fee of as low as P1,500 per month for Health Start and P1,950 for Health Start Family, with the payment program running for 20 years. Moreover, customers get coverage up to age 100 and premiums paid will be returned at age 75 less any benefit paid.

    Health Start insures 1 individual whereas Health Start Family can insure 2 individuals in a single plan with both sharing the same amount of coverage on a first-to-claim basis. With Health Start Family, one can choose a co-insured in the form of their spouse, their parent, their adult child or a sibling. Nonetheless, the list of benefits remains to be the same for both plan types.

    According to Grace Mallabo, AXA Philippines Segment Director for Protection and Health, the Health Start product range also comes with built-in child coverage. “Whether it is Health Start for individuals or Health Start Family variant, there is a built-in child coverage.

    This means that if I have a kid who unfortunately contract a serious child illness, that child will be covered as well, at up to P200,000,” Mallabo said.