Insurance company Zurich Life & Investments and its OnePath Life business have moved to include specific COVID-19 vaccine protection. The additional cover at no extra cost for death, income protection and total and permanent disability (TPD) is a first for the Australian health insurance scene.
Private health insurance in Australia is “community rated,” which means everyone is entitled to buy the same product at the same price (except for Lifetime Health Cover and Age-based Discounts), and is guaranteed the right to renew their policy. A health insurer cannot refuse to insure you or refuse to sell you any policy you want to buy.
Medicare covers some insurance areas, but private health insurance can cover more healthcare options and offer an extra layer of security in dire situations.
Zurich LiveWell Chief Product and Proposition Officer Sally Phillips says, “Our intention is to provide extra peace of mind for Australians as they weigh up the benefits and risks of having the COVID-19 vaccine, at a time when it is important for as many of us as possible to come forward for vaccination.”
“While medical evidence indicates the likelihood of vaccine complications is extremely low, we understand that some people are concerned about the risk of a serious adverse reaction. This initiative is a small way we can reassure our customers and confirm their eligibility for financial support through their Zurich or OnePath life insurance policy in the rare instance they may suffer a serious side effect.”
Zurich says insured residents or their beneficiaries are eligible for up to an additional $50,000 one-off payment on top of their death or TPD benefit should they die or be permanently disabled because of the vaccine.
Income protection policyholders may also be eligible for payment during their standard waiting period if they are hospitalised.
Death or disability arising from COVID-19 infection is already covered within Zurich and OnePath Life policies.
The COVID-19 vaccine protection offer is available from this month until December 31st. Eligible customers must have an in-force policy during this period and at the time they are vaccinated. Claims must be lodged by December 31 next year and death or disability must occur within 90 days of receiving the vaccination.
Original story found on the Zurich Life Insurance and Insurance News Australia websites respectively. Information from Australian Private Health Insurance Information website. Note: Content has been edited for style and length.
Nina Alvarez is a Content Producer for Healthcare Channel. Her interests include writing, particularly about the healthcare sector and the many ways it can improve to further benefit people from all walks of life.