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Health & Care Board Update - June 2022

We recently held the final Health & Care Board meeting of the current session. As usual there were many topics to discuss, and we also spent time reflecting on the 2021-22 session. We were fortunate to welcome three guests to our meeting. 

Firstly, Matthew Edwards joined, not only to provide an update on the work of the CMI, but also that of the MRSC. Matthew provided an overview of the CMI’s work during 2021/22, including the ongoing COVID-19 related activity and “normal” activities such as the release of the “16” Series term assurances graduations. There was some discussion about international best practice and, unsurprisingly, some thoughts on the future work of the Assurances Committee given the focus on products of particular interest to the H&C Board.

The update on the activity of the MRSC was also interesting for the Board, particularly some of the thinking around the future of mortality modelling. It was explained that as the MRSC is not a Board they don’t have responsibility for any working parties, but some of the research ideas coming out can result in Practice Boards establishing working parties (as happened in the case of the Antibiotic Resistance Working Party). The Board asked whether the MRSC produced a newsletter of its activity as many of the topics can be of interest to the Board. This isn’t currently done, but it was noted as a good suggestion.

Later in the meeting we were joined by Neil Buckley from the Regulation Board. This is part of Neil’s drive to establish stronger connections with the Practice Boards and his visit to the H&C Board was much appreciated. Neil provided some background on himself and an overview of the work of the Regulation Board. One of the Board’s priorities is concerned with what the Government is looking to do in relation to regulation of the Actuarial Profession. Members should expect to hear more about the Audit, Reporting and Governance Authority (ARGA) as the Government has confirmed that it intends to legislate to give ARGA statutory powers to oversee and regulate the actuarial profession.

We were also pleased to hear from Katy Stephenson who provided an update on the Digital Community Platform that the IFoA is working on. This looks very promising and it will hopefully transform the way Practice Boards can engage with members in their practice areas. 

In addition to our regular updates from the Research and Lifelong learning committees the Board also took time to look back at the 2021/22 session. This is briefly summarised in 3 sections below:

1. Guests

The Board continued to meet virtually and welcome external guests at each meeting including:

  • Asif John and John Ng provided an update on work being done in the Data Science Community. 
  • Louise Pryor joined to provide an overview of the IFoA Strategy’s three main themes Repositioning the profession, Transforming the membership experience and Fostering a vibrant global community
  • Nihar Shembavnekar and Giulia Boccarini from the Health Foundation REAL Centre (Research and Economic Analysis for the Long Term) provided an overview of the strategy and work of the REAL Centre.

2. Research and Subgroups

Over the session research topics have included Diabetes, the Role of Actuaries in H&C and Mental Health. Additionally new subgroups have been established to sit alongside the existing Sustainability subgroup: 

  • The Sustainability subgroup continues to work with our liaison from the Sustainability Board. A H&C Climate change WP has finished their initial paper and is now looks to establish a practical guide dedicated to H&C, as well as explore some key research areas.  
  • A Social Care subgroup has been established in light of the announcement from the Government on Social Care. It was agreed to launch a new social care working party with 3 clearly defined areas of investigation: Analyse the Financial Impact of the proposals on individuals and the scope for the creation of new Insurance Solutions; Entitlement to and Eligibility for Care; Update the analysis of Global Funding solutions.
  • The final subgroup is focused on H&C Data Science related topics.  Here 2 working parties are being established looking at Techniques in Data Science in H&C and Data Availability in H&C.

3. Lifelong Learning Committee

The Committee’s priority across the session has been to create a high-level content plan that included a number of webinars. Additionally, the Committee has been involved in shaping the H&C content of the IFoA’s Summer Conference – so hopefully there will be plenty to interest out members at this event. 

It has, at times, been challenging to generate sufficient content and so the Board and Lifelong Learning Committee are always eager to hear from anyone who is interested in contributing to H&C events.    


So this brings me not only to the end of this blog but also to the end of my term as Chair of the H&C Board. I’ve had the privilege to sit on the Board for the last 6 years and help shape the H&C practice area, but now is the time for me to step aside and let others take it forward. It’s fantastic news that Richard Purcell and Scott Reid will assume the roles of Chair and Deputy Chair, respectively, so the Board is in safe hands and I look forward to seeing what it will achieve in the future. Watch this space.

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