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Critical illness underwriting

Norwich Union has introduced a telephone service staffed by nurses to help gather information on some protection product applications and speed up the process.

The service, which was launched at the start of the year, has carried out over 1,400 telephone interviews.

Telephone nurse interviews are targeted at policy applications that require further information, either because of responses that have triggered further questions, or as a result of ambiguous answers.

They have been used in cases where general practitioners’ reports may previously have been used. This can help to streamline the process dramatically - a typical GP report can take around 20 days to send and receive, while the majority of telephone nurse interview cases are turned around within two days.

Tony Jupp, chief underwriter at Norwich Union, says: “This is a very successful initiative and using healthcare professionals to interview some of our applicants has had great benefits. It has speeded up the turnaround times on some complex cases. We have targeted nurse calls where they will add most value. They are invaluable in providing insight where a client has made a vague or incomplete statement in answer to a question. By using their medical knowledge they are ideally suited to question and understand the importance of the information a client was trying to give us.”

Norwich Union began an initial pilot of telephone nurse interviews in September 2006, before launching the scheme in 2007. When contacted, 98% of applicants have been happy to talk through their application form with a Norwich Union nurse.

 

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