BPI-Philam, a leading provider of bancassurance in the country, is urging Filipinos to be extra vigilant about their health and be more cautious of other diseases even as the Philippines continues to wage a fight against the COVID-19.
The company issued the call as it cited date from the Philippine Statistics Authority, which reveals that the top causes of death in the country in 2020 were ischemic heart diseases (99,680 registered deaths), neoplasms or cancers (62,289), and cerebrovascular diseases (59,736). The same diseases were the top causes of death from 2015 to 2019 as well.
The leading death cause, ischemic heart diseases, increased about 2.3% this year from the 97.5 thousand deaths in 2019 and the average 82,547 deaths from 2015 to 2019. Meanwhile, neoplasms and cerebrovascular diseases decreased 9.3% and 6%, respectively, from 2019.
“On top of our battle with the pandemic, it’s clear in the statistics that certain diseases have been taking a toll for several years now. It’s crucial then to take action towards enabling more Filipinos with access to quality yet affordable health care while implementing the necessary sector reforms. BPI-Philam is committed to do its part by providing solutions that not only address immediate needs but have long-term benefits too,” said BPI-Philam Chief Executive Officer Surendra Menon.
BPI-Philam combines the power of a robust life and health insurance plan with its proprietary wellness program to help Filipinos manage their expenses and take better care of their total well-being. It recently launched an investment-linked life and health insurance product that gives considerable protection and better access to medical care with minimal out-of-pocket expenses. The product, MedLife Protect Plus, covers even the leading diseases like hypertensive diseases, chronic respiratory diseases, cancers, and diabetes except when it is a pre-existing condition at the time of subscription.
When choosing a health insurance plan that can help address top diseases, BPI-Philam advised consumers that they should verify whether the policy provides enough coverage for basic in-patient hospitalization, critical care, surgical benefit, and emergency services; recovery care coverage; as well as access to a wide network of health care providers.
Such check is crucial to ensure the early management of diseases and give the patient better chances at recovery, the company said.
MedLife Protect Plus, for instance, provides coverage of up to 90% of medical costs and access to the wide network of accredited providers by leading healthcare administration firm AVEGA. This includes but is not limited to the Asian Hospital and Medical Center, Makati Medical Center, Manila Doctors Hospital, St. Luke’s Medical Center (Quezon City and Bonifacio Global City), The Medical City, and Cardinal Santos Medical Center. Terms and conditions apply.
Prevention through healthy lifestyle choices
While it is uncertain how many Filipinos are predisposed to the top deadly diseases, there are ways to prevent and control them before they worsen or become fatal. In the same way that the WHO provides information and guidance on various evidence-based interventions, BPI-Philam is giving customers the option to integrate their MedLife Protect Plus plan with Philam Vitality, a science-backed health and wellness program. By making healthy lifestyle choices, Philam Vitality active customers reap rewards in the form of special perks from lifestyle establishments, as well as boosts in insurance coverage by as much as 50%.
“We cannot emphasize enough the importance of making conscious lifestyle adjustments to address the global concern on health and wellness. Small improvements in daily habits add up and help prevent or at least delay the onset of diseases,” Menon said.
At less than a year since its launch in September 2020, MedLife Protect Plus has already been able to service a client who was diagnosed of having a small myoma. A former overseas Filipino worker who came home to be with her family for good due to the pandemic, the patient was diagnosed in just a month after getting their policy. The prescribed surgery would have cost her about PHP200,000 in medical bills, a sizable amount for many Filipino families, but her health card covered most of it, allowing the patient to focus on getting better instead.
“Dismissing life and health insurance thinking that one is physically fit or doesn’t feel anything out of the ordinary is equivalent to having a false sense of invincibility to life’s uncertainties. But having certain diseases cause the most deaths year over year should be proof enough that the threat is ever present. We can’t always control what will happen in the future, but we can always focus on what we can do to secure it,” Menon said.
The premium payment can go as low as PHP1,986 per month for an 18-year-old male, payable until the age of 65 and with benefit coverage until 80 years old. Premium will vary based on several factors such as age, gender, and health status. MedLife Protect Plus is designed to benefit the underserved market including freelancers, owners of small businesses and their employees, as well as OFWs and their families. Apart from health insurance, it provides up to 90x life insurance benefit and built-in cash value passive income through investments. The provider, BPI-Philam, is the bancassurance arm of AIA Philam Life in the Philippines. More information about products and services is available at the website <bpi-philam.com>, thru the virtual assistant Bessie (via Messenger), or on Facebook <fb.com/BPIPhilamOfficial>.