Keith Klintworth | FinTech Magazine

Preventive medicine and well-being have never been more popular than they are now, in the wake of the COVID pandemic. Indeed, private health services, especially those delivered digitally, are in demand as medical services are undergoing massive transitions around the world and waiting lists for treatments for everyday conditions are at all-time highs. Health insurers around the world are responding by developing fast digital ways for customers to access benefits.

Vitality Health Insurance is one such organization. An insurance provider that offers its customers health, life and auto insurance, as well as a range of investment options. It was originally established in 2004 when a partnership was formed between Prudential and Discovery, a South African insurer.

dr Keith Klintworth, Vitality’s current Managing Director Health, joined the company in 2010. At the time, Vitality had just acquired Standard Life Healthcare to drive economies of scale and grow its healthcare membership base. By 2014, Vitality had acquired Prudential and operated as a compound underwriter for life and health insurance.

“We just kept getting stronger,” says Klintworth proudly. As a healthcare professional with a 25-year career in medicine – during which he has served both as a managing director for the insurer and as a consultant anesthetist – it is reassuring to see this soft-spoken South African’s enthusiasm for Vitality’s offerings. After all, it is not an ordinary health and life insurer: your bosses are doctors and the well-being of your customers is the top priority.

As part of this, they’ve embedded what they call the Vitality program into their products, he explains, an incentive-based behavior change initiative that encourages personal behavior change and encourages people to make healthy choices through rewards. The program’s success, which began in 1997, has spanned 25 years. As a result, the well-structured offering has plenty of data demonstrating the impact it is making in promoting positive behavior change and the significant difference it has made for its members during its quarter-century tenure.

Personalized digital healthcare

The idea is that health care and insurance coverage should be as individualized as possible so that they can support people with any health changes in their lives, big or small, to maximize their health. In 2021, Vitality announced its data-driven approach to make this happen. Dubbed Next Best Action, the new initiative combines Vitality’s data science skills with its expertise in understanding individual health risks to provide members with the one action that would have the greatest impact on their future health.

Ultimately, it is due to behavioral changes stimulated by Vitality. Users are encouraged to make lifestyle changes and adopt healthier habits.

Technical innovation

Technology plays a crucial role in everything Vitality does. A clear focus of the company is the use of technology to improve customer experience, access and clinical pathways. It’s also a powerful tool for your own employees.

“The most important consequence of empowering our own people is that it drives service improvement and understanding of our customers’ needs. And why do I think that’s important? Well, it’s about building advocacy among the actual membership base,” says Klintworth.

He continues, “Enterprises need to drive scalability, and savings are scaled by deploying different technologies. They have to continually invest in technology because it’s so important to our business.”

A bright future for digital healthcare providers

As telemedicine and digital health providers find themselves in an increasingly receptive environment, the future looks healthier than ever. “We’ve always been known as a disruptor in the health insurance market and we’re doing things differently,” says Klintworth. “Using the data we collect to develop incentives for behavior changes that support better health and well-being and reduce health risk will always differentiate us.”

He adds: “The adoption of digital healthcare is a revolution. We need to keep pushing this revolution because from a consumer perspective, I believe it works best for the majority of people – that’s really important to us. Our main strategic focus remains to focus on further reducing future morbidity and mortality and giving people truly healthy years of life.”

Read the full story HERE.

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