PRU LIFE UK has partnered with St. Luke’s Medical Center (SLMC) to improve the processing of critical illness claims of its policy owners.
Speaking to reporters at the launch of the partnership at SLMC Bonifacio Global City, Pru Life UK President and CEO Antonio G. De Rosas said the tie-up allows its policy owners with critical illness claims to authorize St. Luke’s to release their medical records by signing a consent form.
Mr. De Rosas said this is a departure from the original process where patients have to get their medical history files by themselves and submit it to Pru Life for verification, where approval usually takes a few days.
He added that policy holders still need to file for reimbursements as insurance firms do not work like health maintenance organizations where patients only need to bring their cards for their medical transactions.
“So when you file reimbursement, ang daming documents na kailangan i-collate (you need to collate many documents). Tapos ikaw mismo (And then) you have to go the hospital and get the medical records and then send it to Pru Life UK [which] will do an independent verification… It takes a long time,” he explained.
With the partnership which allows St. Luke’s to send patients’ medical data directly to Pru Life, the process will be faster and the reimbursement cheque will arrive by the time of the patients’ checkout, Mr. De Rosas said.
The consent form which allows St. Luke’s to release the policy holders’ medical records to Pru Life can be accessed through the insurer’s website or through the International Patients’ Lounge in the BGC and Quezon City branches of SLMC.
Patients will also be able to verify about the progress of their claims through Pru Life.
St. Luke’s is a strategic partner for Pru Life as 11% of the insurer’s policy claimants were clients of the hospital in 2018, according to Pru Life Assistant Vice-President and Head of Product Management Daryl Adigue.
In total, the insurance firm disbursed a total of P190 million benefit payouts to more than 300 policy holders with critical illness claims, Pru Life said. Most of these cases involved cancer, stroke, heart attack, brain tumor, and renal failure.
Aside from faster reimbursement claims, policy holders will also have executive benefits in St. Luke’s, including special onsite assistance and discounts on selected hospital services and various treatment packages, according to SLMC President and CEO Arturo S. De La Peña.
Mr. Dela Peña said volume discount rates will be applied, depending on the number of policy holders who will utilise the service tie-up.
The six months exclusive partnership with St. Luke’s — which remains open for possible renewal — is Pru Life’s first tie-up with a hospital.
Mr. De Rosas said on Thursday that the insurer could forge similar partnerships with more hospitals in the future.
“At some point in time, we will have to make it available for other medical providers also,” he said.
During his speech at the event, SLMC’s Mr. Dela Peña said apart from their partnership with Pru Life, SLMC is also looking towards expansion, with their Davao branch set to be fully completed by the first quarter of 2020 and fully operational by around the second quarter of 2022.
Mr. Dela Peña said negotiations for another branch in the Visayas are ongoing.
Pru Life approved a total of 2,737 claims amounting to P644 million in 2018, Ms. Adigue said.
More than 50% of the insurer’s market of policy holders belong to the millennial generation, Mr. De Rosas added.
Pru Life was the fourth biggest life insurer in the Philippines based on premium income in 2018 with P22.03 billion, according to data from the Insurance Commission. — Luz Wendy T. Noble