It has been an eventful year in respect of our Group Insurance Scheme, as we were notified in January that our existing provider, Police Mutual, were withdrawing from the Group Insurance Market. As a result, we were invited to transfer the management of our scheme to Philip Williams Insurance Management Company from 1st April. This change required a quick due diligence exercise by the Trustees, but after meeting with our scheme managers at Philip Williams, and speaking to their existing customers, we decided to accept the change of scheme management as the best way to ensure continuity of benefit to members. The scheme benefits and insurers remained largely unchanged, although it necessitated a change of motor breakdown provider from RAC to Call Assist. The change was communicated to members and we are pleased to report that the change process did not present problems or negative feedback from members.
The change of provider also presented the opportunity to introduce a new service to provide welfare support to members through Red Arc Independent Care Service. This is a nurse led care service for any serious health condition, including mental health and stress at work. It is available to any member, their partner and dependent children who reside with them. The support is predominantly provided through your allocated nurse, who will be a specialist in your condition. If clinically necessary your Nurse will be able to refer you for third party interventions, such as counselling. The service is provided on a self-referral basis and is totally confidential. The fact that you have contacted Red Arc will not be reported to anybody in the Force or OHU, including the Federation. It will also not form part of your NHS Records. We felt that the confidentiality offered by the service was extremely important, and as Trustees we would endorse the service and encourage members to contact them if they feel they need support.
Since April we have met with our Account Managers from Philip Williams Insurance Management Company on a quarterly basis to review scheme performance and ensure that all elements of the scheme were performing and providing support to members. This has enabled us to prepare this report for members detailing the support provided since April. In forthcoming years, it will be our intention to produce full annual reports for members.
We have noted that a number of areas have not been claimed upon as we would expect and hope that this report provides a reminder of the benefits available to members and increases usage of the scheme. Towards the end of 2018 the scheme will undergo a major renewal of benefits, and Trustees will work with the scheme managers to ensure that the benefits continue to meet the needs of members. If areas remain unused then we may look to remove them and replace them with other benefits which we consider will be of more value.
In January 2018 a number of elements of the scheme renewed, and although premiums rose slightly the Trustees agreed to absorb the increase rather than increase the price for members.
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