Future Health / Life Insurance Innovation

Sunday 1st July 2018

As digital transformation continues apace, the health and life insurance sectors are two that face periods of major transition.

Future Health / Life Insurance Innovation

The shift from a singular, segment-based approach to one providing cover to customers via more transparent, real-time and personalised platforms with an increased focus on the value of data is coming fast. Much of the change is being led from the outside. Incumbents appear vulnerable, with many responding slowly at best. What are the innovation opportunities, particularly from more and better data?

Over the past six months, as part of a unique global research project exploring the Future of Patient Data, Future Agenda has been discussing the key likely shifts and responses with many leading insurance companies as well as a number of leading or potential disrupters. As rising healthcare costs from an ageing and more selective population bite, many see revolution more than evolution ahead.

In a series of full-day workshops, private dinners and in-company briefings across leading markets we have drawn on insights from the global view of change in order to provoke informed dialogue around the potential developments that are on, or just beyond, the horizon. 

These discussions have focused on addressing such questions as:

  1. How will new data sources reinvent traditional health and life insurance business models?
  2. How can you build and maintain trust in an increasingly noisy and transparent market?
  3. Which of your datasets can create wider social value from being made open and how?
  4. Which data will you be expected to share and which of these should you try to shield?
  5. What is the best way to gain consent to share and use more specific patient data?
  6. Will more and cheaper DNA profiling enhance or undermine your customer proposition?
  7. Where can more information and better analysis most impact your business model?
  8. How may a disruptive new entrant most effectively destroy your current business?
  9. If patients take control of their own health data how should services be reconfigured?
  10. What shifts elsewhere around healthcare will significantly change customer expectations?
  11. What new partnerships and collaborations will be necessary for future success?
  12. How can underwriting and pricing adapt to real-time, wider data access?

Across the multiple conversations with insurance companies to date we have explored opportunities, challenged leaders’ assumptions, discussed pivotal emerging issues and identified new strategic pathways. Of particular interest has been exploring the likely data driven implications of current and forthcoming moves from big tech, especially Alibaba, Alphabet, Amazon and Apple, as well recent arrivals such as Clover Health, Ladder, Lemonade, OscarSureify and Trov - plus plans elsewhere around mico-insurance. From these discussions, some of the primary innovation priorities that have been detailed for the future include:

  • Upholding Trust – Keeping customers’ confidence in the face of negative media sentiment around data use and as new players with more customer-centric approaches develop and launch more innovative insurance propositions;    
  • Proactive Collaboration – Partnering equitably with potential disrupters ahead of the curve and building mutually beneficial ventures that leverage existing insights and relationships to the full while making full use of proprietary clinical data sets;
  • Embracing Automation – Meaningfully utilising machine learning, conversational commerce and wider AI to both deepen the customer relationship and improve effectiveness of advice and claims support across the patient lifetime; 
  • Personalised Prevention – Embracing and developing more and better distinct patient data access to foresee and manage future health problems at the individual level – in turn reducing insurance costs and increasing customer retention;
  • Data Marketplaces – Ethically and transparently helping customers to benefit from the increasing monetisation of their health data – setting higher standards, ensuring private and public benefit to improve value for all; and
  • Pre-emptive Reinvention – Evolving business practices ahead of the data revolution to access the key talent, build more sustained healthcare professional relationships and overcome outdated paradigms that may be superseded by new competitors.

As more organisations seek to use the insights from the Future of Patient Data project, as well as additional perspectives on the Future Value of Data, Health, Surgery, Privacy and Ageing, it will be interesting to see how these thoughts are supported, challenged and developed.

If you have your own observations to share or would like to learn more about how other organisations are making the most from the Future Agenda insight resource and associated advisory support, please do get in touch


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