For a number of years, we have succeeded in reducing the number of customers forced to take long-term leave due to illness, and we are now investing a further DKK 100 million in preventive healthcare measures. Danica Pension’s Chief Operating Officer, Jesper Bjerre explains:
“Our figures show that prevention is effective. Preventive healthcare initiatives help many customers avoid long-term absence due to illness, and they also make good business sense for us. That’s why we’re now taking the natural next step by investing DKK 100 million over a period of five years in an extended preventive healthcare programme.”
The money will first and foremost go towards strengthening the capacity of employees tasked with ensuring that customers receive the correct treatment at the right time. We must train our employees in how to spot customers who are at risk of long-term absence due to illness.
So far, we have invested an eight-figure sum in preventive measures that have, among other things, increased the interdisciplinary efforts of, for example, psychologists and physiotherapists, and we have introduced a health helpline where online health experts provide guidance to customers at an early stage of their illness. We have achieved notable results, particularly with respect to psychological care, and we are looking to achieve this same level of success in other areas as well. Jesper Bjerre explains:
“Our efforts so far have been focused on mental health. We’re now looking to achieve this same level of success in relation to physical health – an area where there’s still a lot of room for improvement. So far, treatment has followed a very traditional path with 5 to 10 physiotherapy sessions provided over a number of years for treating an injury that despite the treatment keeps recurring. We believe that a more holistic, preventive effort that includes the mental-health aspect as well as exercise would help even more customers to regain their ability to work.”
We believe that a more holistic, preventive effort that includes the mental-health aspect as well as exercise would help even more customers to regain their ability to work.
- Jesper Bjerre, COO, Danica Pension
Jesper Bjerre also points to the fact that progress related to healthcare can be achieved through a better understanding of the large amounts of customer health data available. In this area, we see a particular potential for a collaboration between public and private healthcare providers:
“I see huge potential in the exchange of data between the public healthcare system and, for example, the pensions sector, and I’m very pleased that politicians have mentioned private businesses in their latest digitalisation strategy. It would make life much easier for the individual citizen if we could establish a flexible and coherent system that works across pensionsinfo.dk, provisions of consent, powers of attorney and case files. This would save the individual citizen time, which they would otherwise have to spend on paperwork.”
In Denmark, the number of health insurance policies has increased tenfold since 2003, and 2.3 million residents have health insurance coverage today. In other words, private-sector providers have managed to achieve great success in the market, and according to Jesper Bjerre, this is due to a constant focus on product development:
“Private health insurance has become a success because we’re constantly competing to offer modern, comprehensive solutions with a much wider focus than the previous solutions. Today, mental healthcare treatment for children and the rest of the family is a growing area in our health insurance offering, and we also provide assistance in a range of other areas, such as dieticians and job coaching. The future of health insurance lies in looking at the overall healthcare needs of the customer rather than taking a more narrow policy-related perspective.”