Triple win for Discovery at the Efma–Accenture Innovation in Insurance Awards
Johannesburg - Discovery has taken home three awards in this year's Efma-Accenture Innovation in Insurance Awards, at a virtual ceremony showcasing the best insurance innovations across the globe.
Discovery Health won Gold in the Product and Service Innovation category, for its Hospital at Homeoffering, and Discovery Life won Silver in the Social, Sustainable and Responsible category, for its Vaccination Max Payback product. Discovery also won Gold in the Global Innovator category, which recognises overall world-leaders in insurance innovation.
The insurance awards attracted 398 entries from over 250 institutions in 44 countries, highlighting the innovations that are using emerging technologies to respond to the disruption opportunities in insurance. Innovations were rigorously evaluated by an independent and highly esteemed panel of judges and a robust voting process.
Reflecting on the entries and winners, Efma CEO, John Berry, said: "The winning entries show that the insurance industry is shifting to a consumer-centric model and delivering on new experiences. Amid market disruption and heightened consumer expectations, carriers are developing more individual offerings.
"For example, in the health and wellness space, we've seen an increase in products that aim to improve customers' quality and length of life. We are proud to see that insurers are stepping up to respond to the ever-evolving market and broader societal challenges."
Global Innovator Award
Discovery Chief Executive Adrian Gore accepted the Gold Global Innovator Award on behalf of Discovery Limited, saying: "It's humbling to be recognised in a global competition of this nature and to see the impact of the Vitality Shared-value Insurance model, which is making people healthier around the world. The past few years have demonstrated that insurance as an industry is more relevant than ever – and that innovation has the power to shape the future of financial services."
The Global Innovator category recognises the most innovative insurance organisation whose vision commits it to continuous innovation. The award also recognised the development and leadership of a broad ecosystem of partners, as well as the use of emerging technologies to improve customer experience and overall business performance.
Discovery's pioneering Shared-value Insurance model, underpinned by Vitality, has been scaled to over 35 markets touching the lives of more than 27 million members. Its mechanism of guiding and rewarding better health behaviours has been adopted by leading insurers around the world, assisting them to amplify their impact and support Discovery's core purpose of making people healthier.
Product and Service Innovation Award
Discovery Health won Gold in the Product and Service Innovation category for Hospital at Home. This offering gives medical aid members access to a range of hospital benefits, delivered through their personalised and highly skilled care team, in the comfort of their own homes. Hospital at Home provides a seamless healthcare experience for patients, integrating world-class telehealth capabilities, digital tools, and sophisticated remote monitoring devices. These technologies enable real-time and continuous tracking of clinical progress and efficient delivery of acute care at hospital standards, with superior clinical outcomes.
"Hospital at Home is a transformative innovation delivering highly sophisticated clinical care in the comfort of the patient's home," said Dr Ron Whelan, Chief Commercial Officer of Discovery Health, who accepted the award on behalf of Discovery. He highlighted the ability of Hospital at Home to provide a superior continuum of care with equivalent – and potentially better – patient outcomes, while remaining cost effective. He further highlighted the long-term potential of increasing access to hospital-level care for existing and new customer segments.
Social, Sustainable and Responsible Award
Rounding out Discovery's awards was the Silver win in the new Social, Sustainable and Responsible category, which acknowledges innovations that advance insurance's social purpose and its commitment to being a good corporate citizen. Discovery's life insurance business won for its first-of-a-kind Vaccination Max PayBack Offer, which encourages Discovery Life clients to fully vaccinate against COVID-19 and rewards them with the maximum PayBack amount available on their plans on their first policy anniversary.
Accepting the award, Discovery Life Chief Executive Officer, Riaan van Reenen, said: "It is an honour to receive recognition in a global competition of this scale for an innovation we believe generates value throughout society. Considering our core purpose of making people healthier, the opportunity presented itself, within Discovery Life, to promote healthy behaviour by encouraging vaccination against COVID-19, and through this, reduce underlying mortality and morbidity risk.
"Discovery's unique Shared-value Insurance model allows our clients to share in the value generated from their healthy living. By leveraging this, we were able to reward new policyholders who fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by guaranteeing up to 100% of their first year's premiums back in cash."
The award winners were selected by a panel of judges comprising senior insurers from around the world, combined with online voting by Efma members and non-members from insurance institutions. Each entry was assessed using three criteria: its originality; its strategic capacity to create a long-term competitive edge and return on investment; and its adaptability for use in other markets and countries.