Strong demand for private health insurance in Middle East

United Arab Emirates: Wednesday, March 14 - 2007 @ 10:52

Nexus, the region’s largest financial advisor, has signed an agreement with leading international healthcare brand Royal & SunAlliance, adding a range of health insurance products to their panel.

Products of Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance (Middle East) Ltd. and its administrator Goodhealth Worldwide (Middle East) LLC are the first healthcare insurance products added to Nexus’ panel, as the company had initially specialised in life insurance products.

Response to the addition of a range of Royal & SunAlliance–Goodhealth Worldwide products – which include Foundation Plans, Major Medical Plans and Lifestyle Plans that cover the full range of in-patient charges – has been extremely strong.

Both companies have reported record interest levels in healthcare products since the start of 2007. Among significant accounts developed in the first quarter is a US$ 600,000 medical scheme for a local employer.

“Our clients have registered strong interest in healthcare products, particularly those families who are self-funding their medical expenses. Part of Nexus’ offering in the region is that we bring in best-of-breed products that directly address the concerns and interests of customers and it’s clear that interest in healthcare products are at an all-time high,” said Mahmoud Nodjoumi, owner and CEO, Nexus.

Changes in the regulatory framework regarding the provision of healthcare across the GCC have driven a high number of inquiries since the start of the year.

In Saudi Arabia alone, demand is such that recent estimates predict that the insurance sector will be worth more than SR15 billion by 2009. Saudi Arabia has an expatriate population of seven million, making it potentially the largest health insurance market in the region.

David Youssef, Managing Director of Goodhealth Worldwide (Middle East) LLC, comments: “We are definitely seeing increased demand throughout the region for personal healthcare products, as people look to ensure that they are fully covered against any eventuality.”

In the UAE, private health insurance has risen to the top of the agenda with Abu Dhabi recently passing a law requiring all employers in the Emirate to provide minimum cover for their employees. In November 2006, Dubai also announced that similar regulation will follow for the Emirate’s residents.

Nexus has more than 250 professional and independent advisors in the UAE and Bahrain making it the largest insurance brokerage IFA in the region.

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Wednesday, March 14- 2007 @ 10:52 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.

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