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Sovereign connects more Kiwis to Best Doctors global network

23 March 2012

Sovereign connects more Kiwis to the Best Doctors® global network

Thousands more New Zealanders will now be able to get a second opinion from the world’s leading medical experts, as Sovereign expands its innovative Best Doctors® partnership into workplaces.

Best Doctors is a network of more than 50,000 peer nominated medical experts. Sovereign is the only insurance company in New Zealand to offer its customers access to this network.

If Sovereign customers (and their eligible family members) who have access to the Best Doctors benefit within their workplace scheme are diagnosed with a serious illness, they can get a comprehensive medical review from a recognised expert in the field.

Best Doctors does not replace the existing doctor-patient relationship. Rather, it supports the treating team, offering additional sources of information and an opportunity to consult with top international specialists.

“The expansion is great news for the market as it can now benefit more Kiwis who are in a workplace group scheme who would otherwise possibly not have access to the Best Doctors service”, says Bernie McCrea, Sovereign’s General Manager, Corporate Distribution.

“It’s good for employers too as it’s a great value-added offering for employees, encouraging staff engagement and loyalty.”

Sovereign signed its partnership with Best Doctors in June 2010, and first offered the benefits to its retail customer-base through third-party advisers. From 23 March 2012, the Best Doctors benefit will be made available to Sovereign customers who are members of a group scheme through their employer.

The network was set up more than 20 years ago by two Harvard Medical School-affiliated physicians and now operates in 30 countries, giving more than 30 million people access to advice, reassurance and recommended treatment plans from peer-appointed specialists when they need it most.

In the past 18 months, more than 60,000 New Zealanders have had access to Best Doctors through Sovereign. Of these, 167 clients sought the reassurance provided by a Best Doctors review of their medical case. In the majority of cases, treatment and diagnosis was confirmed in line with their treating doctors. Approximately 6% of cases reported a change in diagnosis and approximately 11% of cases reported a change in treatment, helping to provide the ultimate peace of mind.

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 group.

ENDS

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