Mexico Health Review spoke with PAULINO DECANINI, Executive President of SiSNova on how prevention can increase the sector’s growth.
Q: The insurance sector showed moderate growth in 2018. How did SiSNova perform in that same year?
A: While the Mexican insurance sector grew at a 10 percent pace in 2018, SiSNova grew at a triple-digit rate. We are now close to 237,000 insured individuals, 20 percent of whom never had an insurance product before.
Our rapid development is thanks to the attention we place on patient needs and our ability to respond quickly when they need to use their coverage. We prioritize attention to our clients over any other administrative or financial concern. There are still challenges ahead but we expect to continue growing in the coming years above the market rate. In 2019, our goal is to consolidate our position as an industry leader by developing functional strategies that benefit the insured and to provide excellent services to ensure our patients and their families receive the best medical care. Our main goal is to transform the Mexican healthcare industry.
Q: What advantages does SiSNova offer when compared to traditional insurance products?
A: We offer a comprehensive solution that meets all the medical needs of the insured individual. Traditional major medical insurance policies provide financial protection to avoid the decapitalization of individuals and their families after a disease or an accident. These policies require individuals to pay a co-insurance and a deductible every time the policy is used. Moreover, they only become active once the individual surpasses an established minimum payment, which often means that they only provide care for catastrophic diseases, leaving a gap in healthcare services for primary care.
SiSNova’s goal is to protect more than the individual’s finances; we also care for their health through the implementation of early detection schemes and prevention strategies. This integral service allows us to participate in every stage of our clients’ life to help them stave off serious diseases. We have collaborative agreements with most hospitals, pharmacy chains and other suppliers of medications to ensure the quality of our services.
Q: What strategies is SiSNova implementing to promote a prevention culture among its insured population?
A: This is challenging because at this point, Mexico lacks a prevention culture. We have been developing and testing several strategies to incentivize our insured population to adopt a healthier lifestyle and undertake prevention strategies. These vary widely between individuals depending on their age, gender, socioeconomic status and the commitment that clients and their employers have toward adopting these practices. There is no universal strategy to convince individuals of the importance of adhering to these policies. We need to develop tailored strategies for each case.
Results of these prevention schemes ultimately depend on the individual, especially with problems of obesity, sedentarism, tobacco use and alcoholism. It is necessary to increase awareness about the importance of looking after one’s health. To do that, it is necessary to accompany the individual through their entire life.
Q: What role can technology play in establishing a prevention culture?
A: Technology is a useful tool but successful implementation depends on how willing the patient is to use it. While new technologies can automatically monitor a patient’s health condition, they are worthless if patients do not integrate them into their daily life. Insurance companies are increasingly incorporating technology into their monitoring practices but it is still not a priority for clients. The patient’s main concern is for the insurance to work when it needs to, which means our priority should also be to remain close to the individual and cover their basic healthcare needs.
Q: What measures could increase the penetration of insurance products in Mexico?
A: Insurance penetration in Mexico is below 7 percent due to the lack of flexibility of the current product offering. It is necessary to address this issue because individuals will need an increased number of healthcare services and current public infrastructure has been surpassed by existing needs. This gap in services needs to be addressed both by public and private institutions to ensure access to quality healthcare services by the entire population. No sector can do this alone; alliances are vital for complementing and supporting each other.
SiSNova is a Mexican company that aims to change insurance in the country by providing policies and services to individuals who do not have access to private healthcare system
Industry Analyst and Journalist at Mexico Business Publishing