Faulu eyes insurance pie with critical illness cover

A Faulu Microfinance Bank branch in Nyeri town. PHOTO | JOSEPH KANYI | NMG

Faulu Microfinance bank has introduced a critical illness insurance cover as it expands its bancassurance portfolio in the race for new clients.

The new cover will sell for a monthly premium of Sh1,000. Kenyans aged between 18 to 55 are eligible to apply.

Customers will then be entitled to a payout of between Sh500,000 sum insured up to Sh15 million upon diagnosis of cancer, heart attack, motor neuro, stroke, paraplegia or dementia, among others.

The new product will compete with companies like Britam Plc and Prudential Plc in mitigating the financial burden that families face when medical expenses related to critical illnesses occur and incur more than average medical costs, and traditional health insurance falls short.

“Even with excellent medical insurance, just one critical illness can be a tremendous financial burden. This cover allows one to seek treatment at their facility of choice locally or internationally,” said Apollo Njoroge, Faulu Bank Managing Director.

“It also enables users to manage the lifestyle changes, which may be required on diagnosis including the need for a nurse at home or wheelchair.”

Other conditions to be covered include coma, open-heart surgery, multiple sclerosis, a major organ transplant, Parkinsonism, aortic surgery, renal kidney failure, muscle dystrophy, accidental brain damage, and connective tissue disease such as Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Terminally ill patients, or those in need of specialised treatment, can use the funds to cater to the medical expenses that accrue.

“These illnesses require extensive medical care and treatment; their costs can outstrip a family’s medical insurance policy quickly. If you do not have an emergency fund, you’ll have an even harder time paying those bills out of pocket,” said Mr Njoroge.

Banks and other financial institutions have been expanding and venturing into the insurance business, including Equity bank, one of the largest banks in Kenya.

Insurance offers a significant opportunity for growth, given that the uptake of covers in Kenya is less than three per cent.

Across the region, the pattern of greater uptake of banking services compared to insurance products is repeated.

The cover includes transportation expenses, such as getting to and from treatment centres, retrofitting vehicles to carry scooters or wheelchairs, and installing lifts in homes for critically ill patients who cannot use the staircases.

PAYE Tax Calculator

Note: The results are not exact but very close to the actual.