Shanghai launches record-sharing insurance platform

Xu Lingchao
The new platform intends to assist insurers in their underwriting and claim processes. It will also offer high-quality products to customers in the future.
Xu Lingchao

Shanghai launched an online platform on Thursday to help insurance companies with their process of underwriting and making claims.

The platform, according to the Shanghai Insurance Exchange, shares data with medical and health institutions in the city. Once an insured client grants permission to their insurer, the company will be able to have access to the client’s medical records for underwriting or claiming purposes.

Underwriting refers to fact-checking the client’s health condition as an insurance company decides whether to insure the client or not. Claiming, on the other hand, refers to fact-checking before the company provides compensation to the client.

In China, clients are recommended to provide full medical histories to their insurance providers. But many choose not to, for fear the company will decline to insure or compensate them.

According to Chinese insurance law, even if the client chooses not to reveal his or her specific medical history, such as a heart surgery or cancer, the liability will be pardoned after two years. That is to say, insurance companies have the right to refuse making compensation if the client falls ill because of a disease which he or she should have declared within two years of underwriting. But after two years, the company will have no reason to decline the claim.

With the online platform, insurance companies will have greater access to clients' medical histories, with their permission, which will not only save clients a lot of time with paperwork, but also help insurance companies avoid fraud.

When the platform is launched, a cancer insurance product issued by PICC for the elderly, which can only be settled via the online platform, will start selling before the end of this year.

In the future, the platform will work with other insurance companies to provide a variety of affordable, high-quality insurance products.

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