OASIS International Hospital offering double 11 discounts

OASIS International Hospital offering double 11 discounts

Guanggun Jie, or Singles Day is upon us! This year, we have some exciting discounts to pass along from our partners at OASIS International Hospital here in Beijing.

Movember check-up

Movember is in full swing! From the Fu Manchu to the walrus, to the painter’s brush or pencil, men forgo shaving for the month of November in order to raise money or awareness for men’s health issues.

Officially started 13 years ago by the Movember Foundation, this month-long event strives to help bring the common, and often deadly, health issues faced by men (prostate cancer, testicular cancer, and mental health and suicide prevention) into the spotlight.

By growing your own stache, you too can help start the all-important health discussion with your son, brother, father, friend, colleague, or any other man in your life.

To help support the main idea behind Movember, OASIS International Hospital is offering a steep discount on their Men’s Health checkup.

For RMB 1,998, you can get a full 40+ item checkup which includes examinations for the most common men’s health issues tackled by Movember. OASIS is also offering a further 20% discount on all additional items recommended by your Physician.

If you want to learn more about this or whether a checkup like this is covered by your health insurance, contact us today.

OASIS hospital

A wealth of discounts for women too!

OASIS International Hospital in Beijing is also offering a number of discounts for women as well!

Discounts available in November

From now until the end of November there are two discounts for women who are thinking of starting a family in the near future.

The first discount on offer is a RMB 39 HCG (urine) consultation. This 15 minute test is one of the most effective ways to tell if you’re going to be a new mom.

If you’re still considering whether you want to have children or not, OASIS is offering a 40% discount on their comprehensive pre-pregnancy package. At RMB 2,934 (after discount) this package includes an in-depth health check-up and is certainly an important thing to consider for any woman who wants to have a baby in the near future.

Both of the above deals are valid only until November 30, so be sure to act now! If you would like to learn more about maternity care and insurance, contact one of expert our advisors today.

Discounts for moms-to-be in December and beyond

While Single’s Day is all about enjoying being single, anyone can partake in the discounts offered by companies, including mom’s to be! To that end, OASIS is offering a number of interesting maternity discounts through to the end of December.

Firstly, if you purchase a full pregnancy package (one that contains both prenatal and pregnancy) before December 31, OASIS will refund your purchase. If you purchase this after December 31 but before 1st June 2018 you can benefit from a 50% refund of the cost.

If your baby is due between the 1st and 31st of December, first off: Congratulations! Secondly, OASIS is offering a 30% discount on their natural and C-section birth packages.

For a full list of prices, contact our advisors here on WeChat and we can forward you the rates.

Posted by rmcbroom in News
How Pacific Prime helps you to find the best employee benefits

How Pacific Prime helps you to find the best employee benefits

One of the best ways to attract and retain the best talent in your industry is to offer an attractive benefits package. Yes, compensation is a key part of this but simply offering competitive pay won’t lead to happy employees. These days, you need to go further and implement a more multi-faceted employee benefits program. But, how exactly do you do this and what does a successful benefits solution look like?

To help answer these questions, the corporate team at Pacific Prime China has put together two new flyers that look at our corporate solutions in Beijing and Shanghai. You can download these flyers for free today from our website:

  • Click here for our Beijing flyer
  • Click here for our Shanghai flyer

Who is Pacific Prime China?

Pacific Prime China has been in operation since 2000 when our headquarters in Hong Kong was opened. We opened our first Shanghai office in 2003 and to meet increasing demand in the country, we have recently opened an office in Beijing.

Since our launch, we have helped over 500,000 people find and secure quality health insurance coverage, as well as over 2,000 companies, select and manage quality employee benefits solutions that are built upon health insurance.

We strive to work with businesses of all sizes. In fact, of the 2,000+ companies in our portfolio, you will find leading multinational corporations, regional companies, international schools, and an ever-increasing number of small to medium enterprises.

For each of these companies, we help them to identify, secure, and manage a comprehensive employee benefits package that includes a variety of components discussed below. Together, this has led to 150,000+ employees receiving quality, reliable benefits.

What employee benefits solutions do we offer?

Regardless of the size of your business or team, Pacific Prime China’s corporate team can help you with your employee benefits. For each and every corporate client, we assign a dedicated team of advisors and support staff who strive to manage every aspect of your benefits solution thereby making it easier for you or your HR team to focus on your business.

When it comes to employee benefits, we believe that having a robust group insurance solution is the foundation of any successful benefits solution. To that end, our teams help you find the best coverage for your business. From there, we offer a range of other employee benefits and corporate solutions. These include:

  • Tailored employee wellness programs – Leveraging your base health insurance solution we can help tailor a wellness program to your staff’s requirements. From in-office health checkups and flu shots to ergonomic workstations and chiropractic visits, we can help arrange it all.
  • Business insurance – We offer a variety of insurance solutions designed to cover your business. From professional liability cover to property casualty, business interruption, and more we can ensure your business is covered. If you work in specific industries we can also ensure your coverage meets current regulations.  
  • Travel insurance – Cover your employees while they are out of the country.
  • Group life insurance – An increasingly popular benefit being demanded in China, our team can help you secure a group life plan that covers your employees and their families.
  • Multijurisdictional management – If you have offices in other provinces or countries we can help coordinate between them, ensuring that you have a comparable solution in each location, all managed centrally by your corporate advisors at Pacific Prime.

We don’t just stop at helping you find the right employee benefits solution. Unlike many other brokers, our teams are here to support you and your employees throughout the life of your solution. This unparalleled level of support helps to ensure that we maintain long lasting relationships with all of our clients.

How do we ensure you get the best package?

With a nearly infinite number of solutions out there, it can be hard to identify the “best” employee benefits solution for your company. As mentioned above, this is where Pacific Prime can help. Our experts work with you to identify your coverage needs and suggest options that will work best.

In order to do this, we have developed a unique service and support model that leverages what we refer to as a ‘broker framework’. This framework is comprised of three elements:

  • Consulting  
  • Policy broking  
  • Plan administration  

Together, these three elements allow us to offer the following services to all corporate clients:   

  • Analysis of market competitiveness
  • Employee claims and benefits assistance
  • Management reporting
  • Members orientations
  • Renewal processing
  • Plan design and cost control assistance
  • Annual benchmarking
  • Invoicing and account reconciliation
  • And more

By leveraging the above we work with you to identify and manage a solution that is right for your business.

To learn more about the corporate solutions we offer in China, check out our Beijing and Shanghai corporate flyers today, or contact us.

Posted by rmcbroom in Group Health Insurance
Minimizing risk with cyber insurance

Minimizing risk with cyber insurance

Follow any tech or security blogs and news and it quickly becomes apparent that nearly every week there is some massive new security breach found in computer software, operating systems, and sometimes even hardware. In many cases these risks are actually fairly minimal to many companies in China, but at least once every couple months there is a risk uncovered that poses a potentially massive threat. In mid-May, 2017 that threat was WannaCry, one which has infected a disproportionately high number of computers in China. Here, Sylver Zhong, Pacific Prime China’s Head Property & Casualty Consultant discusses this threat, why your business may be at risk, and how cyber insurance can help you effectively deal with the risk of cyber threats.

What exactly is WannaCry?

WannaCry is a piece of malware (malicious software) called a “worm” that infects computers and essentially holds important files hostage until a ransom – in this case around USD 300 in bitcoin (a digital currency) is paid. This type of infection is commonly referred to by experts as “ransomware” and has become a major concern for companies around the world.

While ransomware has been infecting computers since the early days of computer networking, attacks have become more frequent and sophisticated. This attack is simply the latest major computer security threat, and is being hailed by some as the biggest ransomware threat to date.

What sets it apart from other worms and ransomware attacks is the fact that it has managed to attack a number of public institutions and companies around the world. Initially discovered on May 12, this worm which attacks computers and networks running Microsoft Windows, has since spread around the world.

In fact, according to CNET, the worm managed to infect over 200,000 computers in 150 different countries by May 15. From what we know of the malware, it has been quite successful. Companies like Deutsche Bahn, FedEx, and even the National Health Service in the UK have all been infected.   

How is it infecting computers?

When WannaCry was first detected and reported on, it was noted that the worm was being transmitted in an email campaign where files attached and opened would introduce it to computers and infect them. While this is a common way for malicious software to be spread, WannaCry was, in fact, not transmitted this way.

Instead, the hackers who created it did so using a little known Windows OS security flaw originally discovered, and used, by the National Security Agency in the US. According to this article which discusses how WannaCry is spread in Wired, “Without additional proof as to another cause of infection, it can be concluded that the attackers initiated their plan to specifically target machines with a pre-existing vulnerability, using these to spread WannaCry to other systems on a connected network.”

The most important thing to be aware of here is that Microsoft actually published a security update for Windows earlier this year which blocked this hole. Machines with the most up-to-date security update installed are safe from this specific ransomware. That said, the software powering this ransomware is advanced enough to scan networks for out of date machines and start the attack there.

Once one machine is infected, the worm has coding that allows it to scan other computers on the network for ones that do not have the recent security update installed and then transfer and install itself on any other vulnerable computers.

Arguably the most interesting, and scary, thing about this malware is how fast it spread, and how widespread the infections have become. When looking at the numbers infected, it appears that China is easily one of the hardest hit countries.    

Why is it more prevalent in China?

According to this article in the HKFP, “China’s National Computer Network Emergency Response Center has confirmed that by 14 May, half of the infected IPs were located in China. The attacks have affected about 30,000 institutions, including universities, immigration checkpoints and oil stations.”

The article goes on to cite that the major reason as to why businesses and institutions in the country are adversely affected is because of the fact that many people in China prefer to use unlicensed versions of Windows. If you do not register your copies of Windows, you will not receive the incredibly important security updates, which means your system is vulnerable.

Another reason as to why it has been so widespread is due to the fact that people might not have known about it and taken steps to update their business’s networks against this threat.

How can I minimize my company’s cyber risk?

Regardless of the reasons why this threat has inversely affected organizations in China, it highlights the fact that many businesses in China can be heavily impacted by a cyber attack. For example, the HKFP article linked above mentions that universities, petrol stations, and immigration networks were heavily infected. In fact, it was reported that WannaCry had managed to infect the Shanghai city and Beijing Chaoyang immigration offices.

When it comes to ransomware, it is important to note that your files are usually locked and if you do not pay the hacker the specified amount there is a good chance the files will be deleted. In many cases, the attacks are coded to look for files with important sounding names and keywords e.g., profit, report, figures, etc. and files that might contain this information e.g., PDF, Word, and Excel files.

Having these files locked could result in your business losing an untold amount of money and time, and in some cases could result in lawsuits from being unable to meet contracts or even a forced closure of your business.

Therefore, it would be a good idea to take steps to avoid cyber threats. The most critical thing is to ensure that you keep all of your software up to date, and if you have not licensed your operating systems, it would be worth doing so.

But it’s not just your systems and networks you need to protect. You should protect your business as well. One of the best ways to do so is by securing two main types of insurance:

  • Cyber insurance: A newer form insurance designed to help businesses from losses stemming from cyber threats such as infected computers, lost data, etc. Many plans also cover things such as the costs of data recovery, replacement systems, ransomware, lawsuits that arise due to hacks and cyber loss, etc.
  • Business liability insurance: An increasing number of liability insurance solutions for businesses are starting to offer cover for cyber and digital related incidents. Having a solution that protects your business’s digital aspects is becoming increasingly important.

At Pacific Prime China we offer a variety of solutions to protect your business including both cyber and business liability. If you are looking to protect your business from the next cyber incident, contact us today.  

Posted by rmcbroom in General Insurance, News
Avoid these 5 common corporate health insurance mistakes

Avoid these 5 common corporate health insurance mistakes

In China, as in many other countries, attracting and retaining the best employees can provide companies with an edge over their competitors. While there are many different tactics you can employ to ensure that your staff are the best, there is one that is increasingly in demand by almost all employees: company-sponsored health insurance plans. Having a company health plan can bring a variety of benefits, most notably increased productivity and decreased sick leave, both of which directly impact a company’s bottom line. However, if the plan is not implemented correctly there could be a negative impact on your Return on Investment. If you are looking to avoid this when you implement your plan here are five common corporate health insurance mistakes you should avoid.

Mistake #1: Not implementing the right coverage

Sure, this might seem like it’s pretty obvious: Not selecting the right coverage will inevitably result in poor plan performance and poor satisfaction with the plan. But the problem is, it is easier said than done to select the best plan for your employees. There are a huge number of factors involved in corporate health insurance, factors that all need to be considered and addressed in order to not only identify but also implement coverage.

In short, a lot can go wrong and while a lot can be done to avoid this mistake there is one thing that is absolutely important that you get right: the type of insurance coverage you secure.

In China, there are two types of private health insurance plans available to secure:

  • Local health insurance plans – Plans designed to provide cover of healthcare in China only.
  • International health insurance plans – Plans designed to provide cover not only in China but also worldwide.

The core concept of these two types of plans is similar: They provide coverage of most health care employees will pursue. It is important to note here that these plans are on top of the social insurance scheme that all employers and employees need to pay into.

The major difference between the plans is not only in the area they cover, but the fact that international health insurance plans tend to have higher coverage limits which allow employees to seek care at more expensive and higher quality private medical facilities.

From our experience, the major mistake made by companies here is that they don’t select the right level of coverage for their employees. For example, if you have employees who travel frequently for work a local health insurance plan will not cover them outside of China. If they get sick, they will have to pay for care out of their own pocket. It would be better to secure them international coverage.

Mistake #2: Assuming your plan covers pre-existing conditions

This is a common corporate health insurance mistake made by companies all over the world as historically, group plans have included what insurers refer to as a ‘Medical History Disregard’ or MHD. This clause means that insurers will not consider a person’s existing medical conditions when they join the plan. In other words, your pre-existing conditions are covered.

This is different from individual plans which normally do not cover pre-existing conditions. The mistake here however, is assuming that the MHD is automatically included in any group health insurance plan.

The truth here is that many insurers will usually only consider adding MHD to group plans that cover over a certain number of people, usually between 10 and 20. So, if you are selecting a group plan for say nine of your employees, you should carefully read the plan details provided by the insurer or ask your broker about MHD and whether it is covered.

In some cases, you might be able to negotiate with the insurer to have it added to your plan, but it might come with a higher premium.  

Mistake #3: Not understanding the eligibility requirements of the plan

Health insurers who offer corporate health insurance plans often include what’s called compulsory membership. This clause states that all employees of the same level must be added to the plan.

For example, if you implement a plan with local coverage for your middle managers then all middle managers will be required by the insurer to join the plan.

The mistake companies often make here is that they don’t fully understand how this clause works or that it is actually included in the plan.

To avoid this, it is important that you read the plan documentation and ask the insurer whether this clause is included and how it works as some insurers will define it differently. Beyond that, in many cases you might be able to actually negotiate with the insurer over this clause. For example, if they say that all employees must be covered you might be able to negotiate so that only employees at a certain level need to join the plan.

Mistake #4: Leaving employees out of the selection process

One of the key success factors of any group health insurance plan is whether your employees feel it is valuable and will use it. The mistake here is that companies don’t involve the employees when selecting a plan and ultimately implement a plan that is not used by staff, or doesn’t meet their needs.

If a plan is not utilized, you are essentially throwing good money after bad and could actually end up losing money. To avoid this, it is a good idea to discuss with employees about what they want in terms of coverage and what they need. From there you can set expectations and look for plans that meet the majority of their needs.

Mistake #5: Going with the cheapest option

These days, businesses often operate on increasingly thin margins and when managers go to implement a health insurance plan there might be a bit of sticker shock around the actual up-front cost. This can often lead to businesses going with the cheapest option available.

Businesses that have pursued this strategy have often found that it ends up costing them more in the long run. For example, cheaper plans might have lower levels of service meaning that if there are claims issues or concerns you might need to spend a fair amount of time dealing with them instead of focusing on more important things like running your business.

What’s more, plans that are cheap now might see a massive jump in premium in the near future as insurers realize that they don’t have enough premiums available to cover claims. You could quickly find that your cheap plan is now the most expensive option.

How can I avoid these corporate health insurance mistakes?

One of the best ways to ensure that you find the right corporate health insurance plan for your employees and your company is to work with a broker like Pacific Prime China. Our team of dedicated corporate advisors can help you identify your insurance needs and then select, implement, and even manage a solution that works for your business.

To learn more about how we can help, contact us today.

Posted by rmcbroom in Group Health Insurance

Looking at medical insurance inflation in China

As we reported last week, we have released our latest report on international private medical insurance inflation (IPMI). The report is available as a free download now from our website here. As we mentioned in the last article, IPMI premiums in China inflated by an average of 12.06% in 2016, up from 9.50% in 2015. In this article, we take a look at how China compares regionally when it comes to medical inflation and some China-specific drivers behind the increased inflation.


Medical insurance inflation in China compared with Asia

From the chart below we can see that IPMI plans in Asia saw an average inflation of 9.90% in 2016, which was slightly higher than the global average of 9.22%. This is intriguing in that it could indicate an emerging trend where inflation in Asia will track higher than globally.

For 2016 however, China was not actually the location with the highest health insurance inflation, that honor went to Hong Kong which saw premiums inflate by an average of 13.03%. This would put China as having the second highest average inflation figure of the countries included in the report. The third highest is Singapore, which saw an average inflation of 11.18% in 2016.

China’s location as the country with the 2nd highest average medical insurance inflation is not overly surprising, especially when you look at our Cost of Health Insurance 2016 report which found that China was the third most expensive country for health insurance out of 95 countries.


Breaking China’s inflation down by insurer

Aside from presenting the average inflation figure for the country, this report also presents the average inflation by insurer.

As you can see from the graph above, inflation in China ran anywhere from 6.62% to 31.21%. As with the global ranking of insurers: Allianz Worldwide Care, AXA PPP Healthcare, Bupa Global, and William Russell are all among the providers with the lowest inflation.

One thing to note here is that IntegraGlobal’s 31.21% increase is not reflective of the premiums they charge – they are not charging the highest premiums in China. Rather, their inflation figure shows an adjustment to market rates, putting their plans about on par with the other providers in the country.


Country specific IPMI inflation drivers

In the report, there are 7 drivers of IPMI inflation identified as having an impact on a global scale:

  • New medical technology
  • An imbalance of healthcare resources
  • Increased compensation for healthcare professionals
  • Healthcare overutilization
  • Unstable economies
  • Changing population dynamics
  • The increasing availability of technology

Insurance in China, especially health insurance, has certainly been affected one way or another by the above drivers, especially unstable economies, changing population dynamics, and imbalance of healthcare resources. Of the above drivers one of the most influential is changing population dynamics.

Everyone who has lived in, or followed China’s rise to prominence has seen a drastic shift in population wealth. According to an article from Business Insider in 2015, China has the largest number of millionaires in the world, with the number expected to grow in the near future. Beyond that, China also has the largest middle class in the world. What this has equated to is a larger number of people with spending money.

As such, people in China are increasingly demanding better products including better health care, with an ever increasing number of high net worth (HNW) individuals seeking care from private hospitals. This increase in demand has seen the number of private hospitals boom in the country, and with it have come higher prices. To offset this, local HNWs have been increasingly turning to international health insurance as a way to offset the costs.

Pacific Prime’s China office has certainly seen an increase in the number of local HNWs securing coverage and submitting claims. This, in turn, leads to higher costs for care and therefore higher premiums.

Interestingly. It is well known that the number of HNW expats in China is decreasing. This should lead to a decrease in demand for IPMI, but the opposite is happening. The higher concentration of HNW local citizens demanding coverage is looking to eventually eclipse demand for coverage in China and therefore continue to drive an increase in inflation figures.  

While increasing demand and changing demographics is certainly not the only factor driving IPMI inflation, it is highly likely that it is one of the most important, especially for China. In the future, it would be entirely possible to see inflation continue to increase, and could possibly remain higher than the global average.

To learn more about IPMI inflation, the other drivers, and how the other countries are ranked get your FREE copy of the International Private Medical Insurance Inflation – 2017 report on our website now.  

Posted by rmcbroom in Health Insurance