Liberty introduces first-to-market rapid testing for cholesterol screening

03 May 2013 Nicholas van der Nest, Liberty
Nicholas van der Nest, Divisional Director for Risk Products at Liberty.

Nicholas van der Nest, Divisional Director for Risk Products at Liberty.

Liberty was the first insurer in South Africa to use rapid testing to screen insurance applications for HIV and cotinine. Recently, Liberty introduced a rapid testing for cholesterol as well. Coupled with the finger prick HIV and urine Cotinine tests intr

“Making use of the rapid testing for cholesterol means that clients can receive their cholesterol test results immediately during the appointment with our nurse,” says Nicholas van der Nest, Divisional Director for Risk Products at Liberty.

“In addition, customers who require a cholesterol test as part of their application are given a booklet, the Liberty ‘Health Passport’ – which we provide as a means to impart knowledge and information to our customers to help them really understand and manage the health risks associated with raised cholesterol, being overweight, having raised blood pressure, smoking and HIV. The Health Passport is a guide towards making the necessary changes to truly own their lives.”

“We are confident that our new rapid testing methods translate into an improved experience for our customers when doing business with Liberty. This method allows for the underwriting process to be seamless, quick and non-invasive; with new policies being issued significantly faster,” says van der Nest.

The impact that cholesterol has on the life insurance industry is increasing at an alarming rate. It is one of the top three medical conditions presented on insurance application forms.

When considering a risk insurance application, an underwriter has to ensure that an applicant’s health risk profile is in-line with the risk profile of an average person, as assumed when the product is priced. The higher the risk, the higher the premium is likely to be in order to ensure fairness to all policyholders.

Dr Philippa Peil, Medical Officer at Liberty says that yearly screening tests are encouraged to check cholesterol levels in order to monitor this modifiable health risk. Knowing and understanding your health risks is the first step to reducing these risks and truly owning your life.

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