Bupa (British United Provident Association) was established in the UK in 1947 and has gone on to become one of the world’s leading international healthcare groups.
BUPA is a private limited firm by guarantee with no shareholders, thus it can reinvest profit back into the business.
BUPA invests its profits to fulfill its purpose, which is for us to live : longer, healthier, and happier lives.
BUPA employs more than 62,000 people, principally in the UK, Australia, Spain, Poland, New Zealand and the USA, as well as Saudi Arabia, Hong Kong, India, Thailand, China and across Latin America.
As a Group, BUPA is in the business of providing:
- personal and company-financed health insurance and medical subscription products,
- workplace health services, home healthcare, health assessments and chronic disease management services.
- nursing and residential care for elderly people.
"BUPA Asia" was set up in Hong Kong in 1976 and has since become leading provider of medical insurance in the local market, with around 20% of the local accident and heatlh market. In Hong Kong, Bupa has more than 350,000 members and 2,800 corporate clients.
Many of our clients are start up firms which choose the Corporate Healthnet Plus plan for 5+ staff.
Corporate healthnet Plus provides access to an extensive network (including Quality HealthCare)
* The Quality HealthCare network comprises more than 100 multi-specialty centres and around 5,000 affiliated clinics.
Qualityhealthcare clinics offer:
- Western medicine
- Traditional Chinese medicine
- Diagnostics and imaging
- Physiotherapy and other healthcare services
BUPA Asia is on the 'preferred supplier' list for HK Government Civil Servants.
- Health insurance – on a budget
- Bupa CarePro
NOTE: After age 65 BUPA CarePro reduces your benefit when you are most likely to need cover and escalates the premium charged at the same time:
Maximum Limit /policy year
Below age 65
Above age 65
- Bupa Together
Bupa Together provides Ward level hospital benefits to families which enrol together. The maximum claim amount in any one year is HKD1m. There is the option add outpatient / clinic benefits etc. Bupa also provides No Claim Discounts of up to 15% after 6 years.
Child health insurance
- Bupa Care Kid
This plan covers children (and optionally parents) from 15 days to age 18 when conversion to BUPA CarePro is guaranteed. Essential cover is Hospital only and there are options to add outpatient/clinic cover using Bupa's Qualityhealthcare network. There are optoins for Private, Semi-Private and Ward cover.
NOTE: CarePro benefits are REDUCED at age 65
- Bupa Hospital Cash
- Bupa Civil Servants
- Health insurance - better cover on a higher budget
- Bupa Crystal
- Bupa Gold
For those of our clients looking for high end health care, this product is not preferred on account of the fact it has many limitations, designed it seems, to try and discipline doctors. The most significant limitation is the cap on restiction on Intensive Care treatment of only HKD69,000 per confinement. We know of cases in Hong Kong where the Intensive care treatment bill has been more than HKD69,000 per day for some months.
- Critical illness insurance
- Bupa Critical Essential Care
Corporate Healthnet Plus
Bupa's Corporate Healthnet Plus plan is community rated, meaning the group is not penalized for any adverse claim record. All Healthnet company groups enjoy a price rise that reflects the claim experience of all Corporate Healthnet customers. Other products in the market are often cheaper initially, but then if one of our staff suffers some major set back in their health, renewal premiums can increase dramatically. We once had a client company where one of their staff suffered from breast cancer and the costs in the year 2004 were around HKD1.5m for the year. Our client's premium at renewal jumped to around HKD3m from HKD1m the year before.
This plan serves as a top up to existing medical cover you may well have. You can apply for Bupa Wise Choice if :
- you are: aged 15 days to 59 years
- currently insured as an employee or dependant under a company medical insurance scheme covering hospital and surgical expenses
- normally residing in Hong Kong
Each of your family members has to submit a separate application.
Please note that each member can only enrol in one Bupa individual health insurance scheme (unless enrolling in Bupa Together or Bupa Hospital Cash). RENEWAL AND CONVERSION
Renewal of Bupa Wise Choice is guaranteed until you turn 60, regardless of whether you are still covered by a company health insurance scheme.
At each annual renewal of Bupa Wise Choice, you can choose to convert your membership to the Hospital and Surgical Benefit of Bupa CarePro at the same or lower benefit level without any underwriting. Be warned however, premiums for CarePro escalate and benefits reduce significantly once you turn 65. See Table above.
Packaged Tailor Made Solutions
BUPA provides tailor made group plan, often in an attempt to match of better competitors
For as long as the group's claim ratio is acceptable, annual price increases will be in line with medical inflation (typically +8-12% in HK), but if your group suffers inordinate claims, especially in outpatient claims, you will find premiums could escalate by many times that of the previous year's premiums.
For example we had one group paying c.HKD1m in premium who had a staff incur breast cancer costs in excess of HKD1.5m in one year. The renewal premium was c. HKD3m!
The name "BUPA Global" was the trading name launched by BUPA in July 2014 to bring together a globally consistent brand for its two international operations of BUPA International and ihi BUPA. "Bupa Global" is the trading name of Bupa Insurance Ltd and BUPA Insurance Services Ltd, which are companies registered in the UK and which market the Bupa Global products through Bupa Asia Ltd.
Bupa Global has a current customer base of approximately 800,000 people in more than 190 countries, served by around 1700 staff.
In January of 2015, BUPA Global launched in Hong Kong its new international individual medical products, heralding a next chapter in the provision of lifetime medical cover.
The new plans also feature Obesity and Prophylactic Surgery benefits, which are virtually unknown in the insurance world. Prophylactic Surgery is potentially covered. For example, if you had a family history of breast cancer... you could have a double mastectomy, to reduce your risk of cancer. See below for comarison of BUPA Global health plans.
As a marked departure from the IHI products, BUPA's new range of Global products DO NOT offer cover to Americans who resettle in the US.
Brochures and policy documents have been produced in both English and Traditional Chinese and premiums can now be paid in either HKD or USD.
Along with the launch of its new product range BUPA in Hong Kong announced that its legacy individual products, ie:
- Lifeline ~ Bupa International
- Worldwide Health Options (BWHO) ~ Bupa International
- International Swiss Medical Plan (ISM) ~ ihi Bupa
- Worldwide Health insurance ~ ihi Bupa
- Superior~ ihi Bupa
were to be withdrawn from sale in Hong Kong on 31/3/2015. Only the International Health and Hospital plan (IHHP) was to be continued.
At this stage, customers already on the above individual products can remain on the plans and make amendments, such as adding a dependent or changing their cover, at renewal.
At the launch of the new BUPA Global products, BUPA explained it had refined its segmentation in order to offer propositions that addressed new segments such as travellers, retirees, students and so on and not just international professionals.
BUPA's research was based on feedback from 3,000 consumers that people also wanted to feel the insurer had some interest in their long term health, so medical check ups had to be a part of the new plans.
The same research additionally indicated that people wanted simple, yet comprehensive cover.
The new BUPA Global plans have no options in terms of whether to include dental or evacuation cover, for example.
Do note that Bupa Global currently has no product in its range that meets the requirements in Germany or Switzerland... though existing members may retain their Bupa cover.
If you would like further information on these plans please click the links below to view the plan documents that interest you:
Effective 1 January 2016 all the following products had the right of customers to reside and claim withdrawn for new business
International Health and Hospital Plan (Bupa Global version)
International Health and Hospital Plan (Bupa Asia version)
International Swiss Medical (ASN and ASN Sanitas version)
International Swiss Medical (Bupa Global version)
International Swiss Medical (Bupa Asia version)
Worldwide Health Insurance (Gr. 3/7/8) (Bupa Global version)
Worldwide Health Insurance (Bupa Asia version) Superior (Bupa Global version) Superior (Bupa Asia version)
International Top Up Plan (Bupa Global version)
International Top Up Plan (Bupa Global version) Sundhedsforsikring for Danskere I Tyskland (in English: ‘Danes in Germany’) (bespoke-like product only in Danish) Tandpleje-, Brilleglas- og Kontaktlinseforsikring (in English: ‘Dental Insurance’ ) (bespoke-like product only in Danish) Sundhedsforsikring for ansatte ved EU (in English: ‘Employees at the EU’) (bespoke-like product only in Danish) Sundhedsforsikringen for udstationerede ved UM og Forsvaret (in English: ‘Employees at the Royal Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ ) (bespoke-like product only in Danish)
Bupa Global Brochures
Bupa Global Application Forms
Bupa Global Application Medical Questionnaires
BUPA GLOBAL GROUP PORTABILITY RULES
If a staff who is covered by BUPA Global has been a group member for 3 years, then he/she willl have the option to transfer to the:
- International Health and Hospital Plan ( IHHP) or
- Elite, Major Medical, Ultimate
In the process, the staff will be asked
- Any foreseeable need for treatment in USA, if yes, please provide details?
- For female, is the member current pregnant?
Such questions are NOT asked if transferring to BUPA Global's Select or Premier, no additional underwriting is required.
- Member needs to fulfil 3 year in the group cover for the above rules apply.
- A continual cover is required.
- Full medical underwriting applied if member is less than 3 years membership in SME plan and/or only dependants to move to individual plan without the main applicant (main employee).
- a trip cancellation insurance and
- a package with non-medical coverages that includes baggage insurance and travel delay.
See summary below.
- has occurred, or
- has shown symptoms, or
- has been diagnosed in the previous travel period(s)
shall not be covered in the extended travel period, unless the extension was made before the illness or injury occurred or had shown symptoms..
If Annual Travel is extended with extra travel days and if the extra travel days are purchased prior to your departure from your country of permanent residence, the cover will be continuous without interruption in the extended period.
- a throat infection,
- urinary tract infection or
- acute injuries,
If you are trekking to the top of Mt Kilimanjaro in Tanzania (c 6,000 meters above sea level), then you will be fully covered, as BUPA's World Wide Travel Options policy only excludes mountaineering where specialized mountaineering equipment is required.
For those who engage in adventure sports, do take note of another couple of exclusions.. there is for example NO cover if you are participating in :
- search and rescue
- expeditions, mountaineering or trekking in the North Pole, Antartica, or Greenland.
In a world beset by global warming and increasingly suffering the incidence of epidemics or at least threatened by them, ( notably of late, MERS, SARS and the Wuhan coronavirus), please note that there is NO cover under this policy if the epidemic has been placed "under the direction of the public authorities".
If you choose the Trip Cancellation Option, and this occurs before you book and/or pay for the trip , then the insurance provides cover in the event that you cannot travel because:
1) you or a close relative dies or becomes seriously ill or injured requiring hospitalisation, or
2) you are declared medically unfit to travel, or
3) you cannot be vaccinated due to pregnancy, or
4) because the Royal Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Danish embassy or a similar institution within the EU advises against all travel to the destination of the trip and if the situation has arisen after the insured has purchased the insurance.
BUPA access to Blue Cross/Blue Shield networks in the US
One of the reasons BUPA Global is confident to make this offer, is because in early 2014 BUPA bought a 49% stake in the GeoBlue International health operation that was owned by Highway to Health, Inc. (HTH) and promoted by the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association as the Global health solution for Americans and others living abroad.
BUPA Global policies are now issued with two cards. One is the Bupa card and the other is a Blue Cross Blue Shield GeoBlue card which they use in the US for direct billing through the provider and hospital network.
The Blue Cross card has a number on the back for resolving any local US claim issues. Customers can also visit www.bupaglobalaccess.com to find a full database of treatment providers.
In the US customers will have access to a network of over 65,000 pharmacies where they may purchase their prescribed medications at a discounted price.
If in the US and you do present your GeoBlue Card when visiting a doctor/hospital, the medical provider (clinic/hospital) will then contact GeoBlue Team in Miami to confirm the coverage and arrange direct settlement whenever it is possible.
Please note you may be required to pay any deductible / co-insurance directly to medical provider.
For any questions/issues related to Blue Cross network access in the US
US Customer Service : +1 844-369-3799 (Toll-free) (9pm to 9am HK Time due to TimeZone difference)
Email : firstname.lastname@example.org
Apart from direct settlement service, this card (pictured below) also enables our customers to purchase prescribed medications at a discounted price in over 55,000 pharmacies
Note 'Member ID' will be different for each insured person. For example, if there's a family of 4 insured persons under one IHHP/ISM policy, each family member will receive his/her own 'Member ID'.
Bupa MyFlexi VHIS Plan
Bupa's MyFlexi VHIS plan in Hong Kong offers:
- ‘Full Cover Benefit’ and
- ‘Supplementary Major Medical Benefit’
- Longer hospital coverage
- Cashless treatment without deposit and
- Claims procedure using a Bupa medical card
- Cover for unknown pre-existing conditions
- Discounts for children and as well, at renewal, if you do not claim in the year.
This plan is also Eligible for tax deduction.