HONG KONG, Oct. 3, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Globalsurance published a study recently which showed that International Medical Insurance (iPMI) premiums are increasing by an average of 10.8 percent per year over the last 5 years.
IHI had the biggest premium increases over the course of the study at an average increase of 13 percent per year. AETNA had the second highest increases at an average of 11.9 percent per year.
IHI and AETNA are then followed by InterGlobal (10.9 percent per year), BUPA (10.3 percent per year), William Russell (9.2 percent per year), Allianz (8.0 percent per year), and AXA PPP (7.5 percent per year).
Globalsurance has proposed three reasons for these increases:
1) Exposure to certain markets has caused premium increases for certain providers with IHI being a clear example. IHI's main market is Hong Kong, under the IHHP plan (which Globalsurance sampled), and the company prices policies on a global basis. The Hong Kong average premium increase is 12.7 percent per year, and consequently the IHI global increases make sense. Additionally, there is the question of global vs. zonal pricing which would be the difference between companies like IHI, which has 1 global zone, and Allianz, which has 9 pricing zones. However, with the initial study, while zones allow for different pricing, there is not a great deal of change between zones as global medical inflation is running at roughly the same rate worldwide.
2) The "value for money" being offered by the policy in regards to the premiums vs. the benefits on offer. DKV Globality would be a good example in this case. While Globalsurance only has data for the company from 2011 and 2012, DKV premiums have risen at an average 14.3 percent per year during that period. However, companies' premiums are, in fact, extremely attractive given the coverage being offered by the policies.
3) Age of the portfolio is another major factor. BUPA was studied by Globalsurance using the Worldwide Health Options product. BUPA had relatively low levels of inflation, but the product is new and may be in a "honeymoon" period. The loss ratio for the BUPA WHO plan may deteriorate over time.
The Full study on premium increases is available at Globalsurance.com/blog.