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Health and Care Board meet during lockdown

Adele Groyer, Deputy Chair of the IFoA’s Health and Care Practice BoardAdele Groyer, Deputy Chair of the IFoA’s Health and Care Practice Board, blogs on issues before the board during the coronavirus crisis.

The Health and Care Board met on 28 April. This was our board’s first 100% socially distant meeting – and we can confirm the IFoA did not provide refreshments, but did provide the BlueJeans conference call system!

We thanked Malcolm Slee for his many years as our practice areas Council liaison and welcomed Taurayi Chinowona to the Board. Tau is now based in the UK but comes from a predominantly PMI background in South Africa.

We were lucky enough to have two guests from the Life Board join us this time. The current Chair Colin Dutkiewicz and Karen Brolly, the Deputy Chair.

Colin shared the overwhelmingly positive response to the call for volunteers for ICAT - the IFoA Covid-19 Action Taskforce (see https://www.theactuary.com/news/2020/04/15/ifoa-forms-covid-19-action-group). Over 500 volunteers from 50 countries have come forward to date.  Each sub-group will focus on a very specific Covid-related areas requiring actuarial research and input.

The Health and Care Practice area has formed a Covid-19 working group to focus on four specific areas:

  • Modelling considerations for insured portfolios
  • New business impacts
  • Consumer support
  • Underlying conditions that affect risk of severe Covid-19

It was noted that Covid-19 is already having a detrimental impact on social care provision and this topic may be explored in more detail too.

Karen Brolly, Deputy Chair of the Life Board, shared the results of the brainstorming session held by that board in late 2019. Many of the topics, including understanding consumer need and supporting efforts to improve public financial literacy, are of cross- practice interest. The Life Board is also engaging with the IFoA’s big theme of “The Great Risk Transfer”.

As you may have seen the Protection, Health and Care Conference will unfortunately not be going ahead in the planned format because of social distancing measures.  Options are still being explored, particularly around providing online content to ensure members can access relevant CPD.  We look forward to a time when we can safely resume our networking activities again.

On the research front, the E-cigarettes Working Party recently presented their paper at a sessional meeting in Edinburgh. The Diabetes Working Party is making good progress in collaboration with ARC.  And a remote round table event on the topic of Mental Health is scheduled for May 2020.

The Public Policy area has been kept busy with Covid-related matters, including supporting the submission of a letter to the FCA, HMRC and the PRA to set out measures to support insurance customers in these challenging times. Some of the proposals require the support of these organisations in terms of relaxation of rules. The IFoA also sent a letter to Matt Hancock and Keir Starmer setting out the value that actuaries can bring in terms of understanding Covid and its impacts. 

Beyond Covid, the Health and Care Board sent an outline of how Brexit may impact the practice area and the Public Policy team have collated this. And a “Fairness in Insurance” series of bulletins will be released in the near future.

Please do contact us if you would like to comment on anything that was discussed or if there is anything you think the Health and Care Board should discuss. We wish you well in these challenging times.