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  • May 2023
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Product Trends Around the World 1Q 2023

RGA Market Intelligence

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In Brief

RGA provides quarterly updates on global product developments, which can be made available upon request.

This issue explores how insurers worldwide are developing products to meet the specific protection needs of women.

View the 1Q 2023 digital newsletter.

We have seen a lack of products that are designed to specifically meet women’s needs. A woman’s health affects family, children, and society in general. Lately, we have seen an emergence in the number of launches of insurance products catering to women’s needs. The products offered go across the spectrum from life and health plans to group health, critical illness, and savings plans. Health insurers have partnered with insurtechs, other insurers and specialist organizations to offer services covering women’s health from periods to menopause.

Some life insurers offer plans specific to women. In Southeast Asia there is a slow recognition of the need for financial protection for women. Women’s role has traditionally been as a homemaker or housewife, and they may not necessarily produce any income. In India and the Philippines, a home maker can now be covered for the same amount as that of a working spouse.

This gender gap for women continues onto retirement. Women do not have the ability to save as much for retirement due to taking time off to start a family or simply because of the gender pay differences.

Insurers may well consider playing a role in developing savings plans or financial planning tools specific to women to help bridge this gap.

We will look at some of the women specific insurance products that are currently being offered.

Health Insurance

In the health plan space, we have seen several launches of products specifically designed for women particularly in Southeast Asia.

In India the Star Women Care Insurance Policy is an example of a woman-centric comprehensive health cover specially designed to protect the healthcare needs of women at every stage of their lives. It is available as an individual policy and a floater policy to all females from 18 up to 75 years of age. Some of its special features include pre-acceptance medical screening, midterm inclusions, facility to purchase policy during pregnancy, reproduction, pregnancy care treatment, in-utero fetal surgery surgeries, hospitalization expense of newborn baby, vaccination, pediatrician/medical consultations, and preventive health check-ups.

A lot of these health plans concentrate on providing coverage for mother and child during and after birth. These health plans cover pregnancy and maternity complications and can include coverage for the child up to the age of seven. In Malaysia, health plans are usually prenatal riders that provide coverage for both women and baby starting from 13 weeks of pregnancy. They also provide protection against pregnancy related complications, can provide hospital cash and a lump sum payment in the event of cancer.

In Singapore, the Maternity Insurance Plan for Mother and Child is the first maternity plan to cover mental illness, other insurers also offer coverage for assisted pregnancies such as in vitro fertilization (IVF).

In Thailand, the majority of women are usually the decision makers regarding financial products in the household. Women spend more on healthcare and education of their families. Krungthai AXA Life (KTAXA) has designed products for women to cover pregnancy and maternity complications.

We have also seen the emergence of modular health plans being offered where policyholders can pick and choose specific benefits they need based on needs and requirements. Women have unique healthcare needs in the areas of reproduction, sexual health, maternity care, and preventative care. Bajaj Allianz’s “My Health Care” plan has inbuilt maternity and baby care cover. Health plans geared towards younger women empower them to actively manage their health. Aditya Birla Health Activift is an example that includes coverage for maternity benefits, normal delivery, C-section delivery, and newborn baby expenses. In India, the FG Health Absolute plan offers an additional girl child benefit where the maternity sum assured is increased on the birth of a girl child.


Insurers offering group health plans have gradually introduced more benefits specifically relating to women’s health. They have partnered with health companies, insurtechs and specialists’ providers to provide advice and support from periods to menopause. They offer benefits that cover the topics of fertility, pregnancy, early childhood, breast cancer, cervical cancer, nutrition, menopause, and general wellbeing.

Insurers that offer wellness programs such as Vitality give points for undertaking preventative care services. Women who look after their health by participating in preventative checks such as cancer screenings, vaccinations, Pap smears, mammograms, and bone density scans.

In the U.S., recent partnerships and programs with health insurers include Anthem and Happify Health, Centene and its Start Smart for your Baby program, and Wildflower and the Healthcare Transformation Consortium (HTC) partnership.

Anthem and Happify Health have designed a sequence for maternal health. A Sequence is defined as a digital experience configured to support a specific medical condition. This sequence will give the customer access to Happify Health’s online community covering obstetrics, gynecologists, and dieticians.

Centene and its Superior's Start Smart for Your Baby program provides health education for pregnant people to help improve maternal and newborn health and reduce the risk of birth defects. The program also incorporates care management, care coordination, and health education to improve maternal and infant health. Programs include a breastfeeding program, 24/7 nurse advice line, and an obstetrics care management program.

Wildflower’s unique maternity bundle comprises a package of comprehensive digital tools to help doctors, nurses, and other caregivers assist women with care needs ranging from prenatal to postnatal. Wildflower’s platform also includes educational content and tools.

In Mexico, a platform called WOOW, offers all kinds of insurance in a digital environment and has adapted its services and products to the specific needs of women. This platform includes the Hospital Medical Expenses Insurance (SGMH) plan which offers cover for maternity, childbirth or caesarean section, pregnancy complications, and newborn care. Bupa Mexico also offers the Mommy Care program, which was created to accompany women during pregnancy, childbirth and postpartum. This product covers everything from the coordination of medical appointments, check-ups and pregnancy follow-ups to expenses related to maternity and childbirth complications. The program offers coverage for the baby from seven to 90 days, and nursing care coverage for the first three nights at home.

In the U.K., we have seen private health insurers such as Bupa, AXA, Unum, and Aviva offer enhanced Group offerings including the ones specific for women. Bupa has partnered with the charity Wellbeing of Women to offer a Menopause Plan. The plan gives women 45 minutes with a trained menopause general practitioner (GP) who will develop a personalized plan for managing symptoms. The plan also gives access to a 24/7 nurse-led health line for a year. The Bupa’s Women’s health hub also offers information and guidance on topics from periods to menopause.

Bupa also offers Period Plan, a new pathway that offers fast access to women’s health experts to support common conditions such as endometriosis. Bupa has also partnered with Tommy’s helpline, run by midwives, which gives advice to the pregnant person and their partner.

AXA Health offers expert insights on a range of female health-related topics. The insurer has also teamed up with Peppy to offer fertility, early parenthood, and menopause support services for employees. It offers unlimited access to practical support and information from experts via Peppy’s digital health app. Employees can book a private one-to-one, 40-minute phone or video consultation with a practitioner specializing in fertility, menopause, or perinatal support. The service covers coping with anxiety, infant feeding, hormone replacement therapy (HRT), and management strategies, such as diet and exercise.

Aviva has also enhanced its group offerings to include family planning, fertility services, and new menopause services. These services are available via the Aviva Digital app. The digital hub provides tips and support for menopausal symptoms and a symptom assessment tool.

In Australia, AIA Australia has partnered with the Australasian Menopause Association a group of doctors and allied health professionals who are driving awareness about the commonly overlooked life stage of menopause. AIA’s claims data demonstrates that women in the 45-55 age bracket are 50% more likely to experience depression or anxiety than men. Statistical data also shows that this age group has a high risk of suicide. Nib, another private insurer, took a major position in Midnight Health a digital health startup. Midnight Health launched the Youly platform in February 2021 that provides a range of women’s health and treatment packages. It provides delivery of the morning-after pill together with other healthcare needs, such as the contraceptive pill, thrush, sleep, and HSV-2 treatments.

Critical Illness Plans

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), breast and cervical cancer are the leading causes of women’s ill health. So we now see the emergence of critical illness (CI) plans that cover specific cancers relating to women, such as ovarian cancer, vaginal cancer, breast cancer, and cervical cancer.

In China, Waterdrop has launched insurance against breast cancer recurrence. The policy is for people between 18 to 65 years of age. It is open to people with stage 0 to stage III cancer diagnosis.

In the U.K., RGA launched Plan V Care, a digital cancer-only product designed for women, in partnership with Covéa Life and Direct Life and Pensions. Cancer is a top concern for women in the U.K. aged between 28 to 38.

In India, a recent product launch is the "Women Cancer Care Solution - Pink Health" plan by Union Bank of India. Under the scheme, a customer can be insured between Rs 10 lakh to Rs 30 lakh, and the scheme provides lump sum payout upon diagnosis of breast cancer, cervical cancer, and ovarian cancer. Other features of CI in India include being able to cover all the women in their family in one cover. Additional features include plans that include child education bonus, vehicle loan protection and personal accident cover.

In Malaysia, A-Life Lady is a comprehensive insurance plan that specifically designated for women and covers female illness care, female cancer, and pregnancy benefits. A-Life Lady is a comprehensive takaful for women that give full coverage to female illness, pregnancy benefits, unexpected events, and permanent disability.

In the Philippines, the plan called "PRUHealth Prime-Select Breast Cancer" comes in two packages. A one-time premium of P150 provides a lump sum amount of P10,000 upon diagnosis while a one-time premium of P425 offers a lump sum amount of P10,000 upon diagnosis and a guaranteed lump sum amount of P20,000 when undergoing a mastectomy or lumpectomy. This is valid for one year.

In Sri Lanka, the 11th edition of Liya Harasara will offer an additional free life cover of up to Rs. 1 million for one year from HNB Assurance for Regular Premium Life Insurance policies. Moreover, a daily benefit for childbirth and pregnancy-related hospitalization subject to a maximum of three days per year would be offered to the policyholder. Liya Harasara offers a free personal accident cover up to Rs. 500,000 for every motor insurance policy obtained by females from HNBGI.

The most common severe illness amongst South African women is cancer according to the claims data from Discovery Life. As a Discovery Life client, women of all ages can take advantage of Vitality health checks along with regular check-ups with their GPs, gynecologists, and other specialists. Platinum Life in South Africa also offers a female cancer policy. The female cancer benefit will be payable upon diagnosis of any of the eight female cancers mentioned under cover: breast, vaginal, cervical, uterine, kidney, bladder, ovarian, and fallopian tube. The lump sum paid can be used to cover other things other than medical bills, it is at the customer’s discretion. Liberty also offers a female-specific CI policy called Female Living Lifestyle that complements the main CI policy.

Mammograms, Pap smears, diabetes, and blood pressure checks, among others, are crucial screening options that can make a difference in reducing disease severity.

At RGA, we are eager to engage with clients to better understand and tackle the industry’s most pressing challenges together. Contact us to discuss and to learn more about RGA's capabilities, resources, and solutions.

Life Insurance

Life insurance policies up until recently were not geared towards women specific needs. In Southeast Asia, there were no policies that provided financial protection for home makers. Homemakers may not have an income, but they provide an invaluable contribution at home.

In India, there is now a term policy for homemakers called the independent term insurance for homemakers. Insurers in India continue to offer women centric policies and conduct campaigns particularly around International Women’s Day every year. These campaigns emphasize the importance of financial planning for women and include policies such as period leave, flexible working for returning mothers, mental health helpline, and the introduction of infertility treatments plans under a group policy. Other life policies for women include HDFC Woman Smart Life ULIP, Tata AIG Wellsurance Women and SBI Life’s Smart Women Advantage. HDFC Woman smart Life ULIP is a unit linked nonparticipating life insurance plan.

In the Philippines, insurance options for women are quite limited. Previously, housewives had limited insurance coverage they can now be covered for the same amount as the working spouse. AXA Philippines has partnered with the online literacy platform Bixie to make insurance more accessible to women. Micro insurance products will be available via the Bixie app, Bixie is a platform that connects women who want to invest with the knowledge, network, and tools they need to start investing.

In Malaysia, FI Life has launched the first self-underwritten term life insurance products which offers affordable life insurance for women. PRULady is a regular premium, non-participating life insurance plan that provides you with protection against financial impact arising from female illnesses, death, or disability up to the policy anniversary of age 70.

In the U.S., just 47% of women have life insurance coverage versus 58% of men, according to the 2021 Insurance Barometer Study by Life Happens and LIMRA.

Jenny Life is a no-health-exam-required life insurance provider for women and moms seeking to protect their family's financial stability. Women have typically had less access to tools that promote financial stability. Customers can apply for this life insurance from their smartphone or laptop or simply by sending a text message.

Combination Plans

We have also seen the launch of combination plans for women which usually include life insurance, CI, health, and wellness benefits.

In Nigeria, the “EFU Ladies Insurance & Investment Plan” plan is designed for HABIBMETRO ladies account holders. It is a unit-linked protection and savings plan bundled with micro-critical illness cover and a new paperless distribution channel “Telesales.”

In the Philippines, the Sun Maiden and Sun Maiden Plus insurance plans were designed especially for women These combination plans offer life insurance coverage, female CI benefits, for example cancer, osteoporosis, and hysterectomy, and health and wellness benefits, and for Sun Maiden Plus Maternity benefits.

Manulife Philippines offers HealthFlex, an innovative and accessible life and health insurance solution, and the first and only one in the market that provides customers the flexibility to select the right critical illness protection for them and enhance the scope of their coverage by adding benefits of their choice. Customers can choose which types of illness they would like to be covered by the plan’s advanced CI benefit.

In India, we have seen insurers offer women centric policies. Banks have also followed suit, Punjab National bank’s inaugurated Chola Sarva Shakti Policy is an all-in-one product in association with Cholamandalam MS General Insurance. The policy benefits include personal accident, CI, health cover, medical termination of pregnancy, genetic testing, EMI benefits on job loss, helping hands cover, and more.

Wellsurance Woman is an insurance plan designed only for women, a unique combination of health insurance and wellness offers. Wellsurance Woman covers CIs with higher cancer cover, and also provides hospital cash, recuperation, and cosmetic reconstruction benefits.

SBI Life Women Advantage offers the triple benefits of savings, critical illness, and life insurance in a single policy. It is a women-centric insurance with three-fold benefits with an option to add a rider for additional pregnancy-related complications. Women aged between 18 to 50 years of age can apply.

Technology and Apps

Insurers have joined forces with insurtechs to offer apps that assist women throughout their health journey.
In Asia, a large global insurer launched Emma, a mobile app that provides both insurance- and health-related services. The app is popular with women and serves over 580,000 customers, of which 64% are female. In South Africa, the LI_FE campaign encouraged customers to create an avatar. The avatar then joined a virtual setting where they were introduced to Zesande - a computer-generated "virtual human" who lives her life in a day. In the campaign Zesande, a Black female from South Africa, starts her day as a 20-year-old who just entered the job market. By lunch, she is in her 40s and by 8 PM, she is in her 60s, planning her retirement based on the different financial planning choices she made during her different life stages.

Some of the apps that help people through pregnancy include the MedMutual maternity app. It features a fetal movement tracker, mediation tool for the mother, and a feeding and diaper tracker. The Count the Kicks app is available in 14 languages, including English and Spanish. App users can see their kick-counting history, rate the strength of their baby's movements, set daily reminders, and can count for single babies and twins. This app helps educate and empower women expectant mothers about preventing stillbirth.

In the United Arab Emirates, Mamahood is a comprehensive health advisory platform for women that goes beyond just being a pregnancy app. The solution has a range of health-tracking tools, including menstrual and pregnancy, educational content by healthcare professionals, and a community engagement for women to connect and receive support from fellow mothers and healthcare advisers.

There are also apps to help a woman through menopause. The Family and Women’s Health support Solution with Maven Clinic has a personalized digital care app that helps members identify menopausal symptoms and explore treatment options. During the onboarding process, members are assigned a care team including a dedicated care advocate to assign specialists based on need, such as a mental health therapist and a wellness coach.

In the U.K., Peppy is a digital app where employees will have access to personalized support for their family and reproductive health. This includes advice on how to start a family, becoming a parent and any worries associated with this, going through menopause, and support for both men and women's specific health concerns.

As we can see, insurers have now tapped into offering products specifically for women. The products offered go across the spectrum from life and health plans to group health, critical illness and savings plans.

There are still a limited number of products that give women the chance to plan their retirement. Although recently in South Africa Old Mutual launched a financial education program entitled ‘On the money” . The program was geared particularly towards girls to equip them with the financial skills needed to make smart financial decisions.


Stay tuned for future releases of our quarterly newsletter to see where the next innovations will take us.

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Meet the Authors & Experts

Diana Bosworth
Diana Bosworth
Senior Research Analyst, Strategic Research


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