Health insurance has proven to be an effective way of financing healthcare in any health system. Countries all over the world have adopted various health insurance strategies.
They combine private and government-owned health insurance schemes and in varying degrees. Here is the idea, people pay premiums that cover medical, and other expenses racked up by the insured. This ultimately reduces the financial burden of paying health bills.
Health insurance has been around in Nigeria for about three decades. And it’s provided by private organizations. The NHIS, founded in 2005, was the main focus of the government. And in recent years, state-ran health insurance schemes have become common. But this hasn’t stopped out-of-pocket payments. It accounts for a majority of health financing in Nigeria. The process is being improved upon at the moment.
Tech in health insurance
Globally, health insurers have begun to show interest in technology-driven projects. Ones that improve customer experience and health care delivery. Known as connected health insurance, it is seen as the future of health insurance.
It involves the use of physical devices that connect to the internet. These devices collect and share data. And this data would enable insurers to create value and a more efficient patient pathway. Value, when it comes to improving claims management, risk selection, and price adjustments.
Role of health tech in the Nigerian health insurance industry
There are tech companies in Nigeria that provide connected health insurance platforms. They using the internet of things (IoT) technologies to make this work. Stakeholders in healthcare including patients, clinicians, can access data with the aim of making it better.
Asides these, tech companies improve the adoption of health insurance. This has been quite low in the country with the majority coming from the formal sector. It happens this way because health insurance is a must for civil servant. The private sector, which makes up a larger percentage of the population needs to be convinced to buy health insurance.
This is necessary for Nigeria to achieve universal health coverage. This can happen when Nigerians see that they are safe from fraud. And that their health bills do not have to run them bankrupt. This is where insurtech startups come in.
Insurtech in Nigeria
Insuretech companies have been around for some years now. They provide a platform for people to buy insurance premiums that suit them. They can also choose convenient payment plans. With the growth of insurtech in Nigeria, the uptake of health insurance could improve. The impact of out-of-pocket payment for settling health care bills would reduce too.