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AIA gets flexible on income protection

More flexibility on income protection offerings and enhanced special events are the centrepiece of a revamp of products by AIA Insurance.

Wednesday, March 28th 2007, 5:09AM

by Rob Hosking

Also included is an extension of the total permanent disability insurance coverage to $5 million – the first insurance company to offer that high a level of coverage in New Zealand, says AIA’s national marketing manager, Michael Hewes.

And the company has a new group insurance product which includes partial and recurrent disability benefits, and optional compassionate lump sum, and occupational retraining and rehabilitation benefits.

Changes to AIA’s income protection represent “one of the biggest pieces of work we have done over the past three years,” says Hewes.

Enhancements to income protection include coverage of key events such as adoption, taking care of a dependent, tertiary education of a child, salary increase or career change.

The discount for the income protection package’s mental health exclusion has been doubled form 7.5% to 15%. The exclusion previously was not being utilised enough, says Hewes.

The enhancements apply retrospectively to existing policies. Other changes include enhancements to AIA’s health policies. Surgical benefits are now up to $200,000 per policy year, and non-surgical benefits are up to $100,00 a year.

Post operative physiotherapy and chiropractic treatment now includes osteopathy. And there is a new Hospice cover benefit of up to $100 a night for up to 10 nights.

“People are being pushed out the public health system,” says Hewes. “A lot of treatments are being done privately which previously would have been done by the DHB.”

Rob Hosking is a Wellington-based freelance writer specialising in political, economic and IT related issues.

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