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Sovereign launches innovative severity-based product

New Zealand first for Sovereign - Sovereign launches innovative severity-based product – Progressive Care

Sovereign Insurance is revolutionising the way Kiwis protect themselves with the launch of Progressive Care – a product completely new to New Zealand. Based on customer feedback that showed New Zealanders wanted more options than health or trauma insurance, Progressive Care makes payments for a wide range of medical conditions at various stages of severity, ranging from 10% of the maximum payout to the full 100%.

Progressive Care payments are directly related to the impact an illness has on a person’s physical health.

This allows for the fact that a person may become affected by a condition in stages which may progress to a more severe stage. It also acknowledges that a person can suffer from multiple conditions over time.

Sovereign CEO Symon Brewis-Weston says Progressive Care sits in a new category of insurance.

“Progressive Care is unlike any product currently available in New Zealand. Because payments are made for medical conditions at various stages of severity, customers have more options in how they want to approach their situation. For example – a customer may want to use their payment to seek private treatment – or take time off work or to reduce debt.

“Traditional trauma products generally pay one lump sum when you’re critically ill. Health insurance reimburses policyholders for medical bills.”

Brewis-Weston says the fact that our life expectancy is increasing each year means people will live longer with chronic disease and insurance products need to be relevant to allow customers to plan ahead for this eventuality.

“Conditions that were considered severe or life-threatening 20 years ago now have less of an impact on a customer’s life and physical health. When you think of an angioplasty procedure (collapsed balloon guided by a wire going through your arteries in your heart), this is now a day procedure with the average recovery time only a few days.”

Progressive Care covers 62 medical conditions with payments from 10% through to the full amount of the sum insured, depending on the seriousness of the condition. This means claims can be made across a range of conditions over the life of the policy, at all stages of severity.

The conditions covered by all policies fall into five categories: Heart and Arteries, Cancer, Brain and Nerves, Loss of Function, and Other Health Events.

The total sum assured on a Progressive Care policy is accessible on each of these categories. Customers could receive more payments if the condition worsens for example, if they suffer from a more severe, related condition or they suffer from a new condition. This unique structure means that if a customer is unfortunate enough to suffer more than one condition over their lifetime, they could be in a position to claim for more than 100% of their full cover.

Progressive Care is available as either personal or business protection.

About Sovereign
Sovereign Assurance Company Limited (Sovereign) is New Zealand’s largest life insurer; protecting the lives of more than 600,000 people through the provision of personal insurances (such as life, income protection, disablement and trauma and major medical health policies) and employer sponsored compulsory and voluntary workplace schemes. Sovereign’s financial strength is rated A+ (Superior) by A.M. Best. Sovereign is part of the ASB group of companies, which is in turn part of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

A.M. Best is a global organisation (and an approved rating agency in New Zealand) that undertakes public rating assignments. The current rating was given on 20 December 2012. The AM Best rating scale can be viewed at


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