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With disruptive digital trends setting onto the ANZ healthcare and wellness domain, insurance leaders are looking to advance their business value from injury management capabilities.

Injury management is principal priority for insurance carriers operating in business lines such as workers compensation, personal accident and group disability lines of business. Medical costs are rising, and injury risk profiles are changing, making this an ideal time for carriers to explore new efficiencies. By focusing on new techniques and technologies that can deliver faster recovery and return-to-work times, insurers can achieve great savings while improving patient outcomes.

Keeping close tab on the healthcare industry is critical for insurers operating in this space. Business model changes such as value-based healthcare is bound to have a large impact on the way ANZ insurers conduct injury management operations and payments. 

The business case for improved injury management

Figure 1 The business case for improved injury management

Newer technologies such as exoskeletons, virtual reality and artificial intelligence are bringing forth promises to the industry enabling faster rehabilitations and thereby better outcomes. Industry has been witnessing examples of these technology gaining momentum. The establishment of Ekso Bionics partnering with Royal Rehab in Australia is a testament.

Covid -19 saw a massive penetration of the telehealth services. The trend is here to stay. It is critical for insurers to leverage the power of this technology for operational benefits such as care management and also operational efficiencies for 3 point contact and continuous medical reviews.

We also expect contextual data solutions to play an important role in developing evidence-based guidelines and best practices to help insurers to pursue the best patient outcomes possible and achieve the best possible recovery timelines such as ODG.

Virtual pain management is proving its potential across the globe. A lot of research is being conducted in the ANZ region along this space (e.g. Restore project for developing an immersive VR interface to help patients regain their sense of touch).

It is also important to consider where traditional insurers see insurtechs as competitors and where they hold potential as partners. Here is a summary of some of the biggest trends with the highest potential to reshape the industry:

  1. Value based healthcare
  2. Exo skeletons in rehab
  3. Rise of telehealth
  4. Virtual pain management
  5. Future of workplace injuries
  6. Rise of data
  7. Insurtechs for injury management

For a deeper dive on each of the megatrends, read our whitepaper on "Reimagining next generation injury management for ANZ insurers".

The race to adopt advanced injury management techniques and technologies is on among leading insurers in the region. 

We see three key value levers in next-generation injury management — transforming the experience for injured workers, leveraging data and technology to generate new intelligence to drive efficiencies and experimenting with disruptive technologies and procedures to find new business value. Those who invest now will quickly stand apart from the competition. To learn more, read the full whitepaper here.

Vinodh Stanley Stephen

Head of ANZ Insurance Consulting, Cognizant

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