The Association of Medical Insurers and Intermediaries (AMII) has announced that the UK PMI industry has reached a landmark agreement to adopt the electronic transfer of underwriting direct between insurers.
The move follows an industry-wide consultation led by AMII Executive Chairman Stuart Scullion who described the breakthrough as “an immensely proud moment.”
Announcing the news, Mr. Scullion praised the “vision and determination” of insurers for enabling the change – which had previously been “deemed too difficult to achieve” by others but, led by AMII, has taken just 12 weeks to be agreed and implemented.
The new pan-industry arrangement will start on July 1, 2020, for business transferring between insurers for company schemes, both SME and corporate. It will involve a number of new protocols for intermediaries and insurers, irrespective of whether they are AMII members or not.
The processes being adopted, for which training of operational and customer-facing staff at a number of major health insurers of is currently taking place, will involve the transfer of encrypted data files to nominated email addresses at each insurer as a secure data transfer.
For larger insurers, the process will be automated, with greater manual intervention for smaller firms. A five working day industry-wide service level has also been agreed.
Mr Scullion said: “The Covid-19 Coronavirus has forced all of us to adopt working practices and processes to meet Government social distancing and self-isolating guidelines.
“It makes no sense for intermediaries to visit their offices to collect membership certificates and underwriting to facilitate policy transfers to another provider when there is a readymade solution at our fingertips.
“I am immensely proud of what we have been able to achieve as an industry in adopting a digital process to exchange personal data and underwriting directly between insurers.
“It’s an agreement which has no doubt been accelerated by the once-in-a-lifetime circumstances created by the Coronavirus, and the challenges faced by the PMI industry driven by GDPR and the new Data Protection Act.
“There have been many challenges to overcome as we sought to agree a process and establish a protocol, and I want to extend my personal thanks to the representatives of all those insurers who have shown the vision and determination which has enabled this to happen.”