Protection of the microinsurance consumer: confronting the impact of poverty on contractual relationship

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This paper provides a legal analysis of the contractual vulnerability of the microinsurance consumer and in so doing, studies mechanisms that effectively protect such a consumer. The microinsurance consumer is in a particularly vulnerable contractual position as consequence of his or her “poverty”.

Process mapping for microinsurance operations: A toolkit for understanding and improving business process and client value

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This manual is intended as an aid to microinsurance institutions. It presents a technique called ‘process mapping’ that can support institutions in self-analysis by assisting them in understanding, developing and improving business processes. The manual describes how a process map can be drawn, analysed and adapted for the microinsurance sector. It offers practical guidance about which processes to concentrate on, and guides the reader through the task of improving these processes, first on paper and then in practice.

Pathways towards greater impact: Better microinsurance models, products and processes for MFIs

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As providers of financial services to low-income communities, microfinance institutions (MFIs) can be effective channels through which to distribute insurance to poor people. In general, MFIs are beginning to live up to their potential in this regard. According to a survey of 450 MFIs, nearly 70 per cent provide insurance and nearly half of the insurance-providing MFIs offer some type of voluntary cover. These findings suggest that products are evolving beyond the basic credit life insurance that benefits the lenders more than their borrowers.

MILK Discussion Note #3: Counting lives covered – Getting it right

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The Microinsurance Learning and Knowledge (MILK) Project released Discussion Note n°3 which syntheses the MILK’s approach for counting policies and covered lives. Indeed, keeping an accurate count of covered lives is important for measuring the scale and impact of a microinsurance program, and different approaches can lead to drastically different counts.

MILK Discussion Note #2: Are Existing Health Financing Mechanisms Sufficient for Poor Women in Guatemala?

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The MILK Project has reviewed some of the data from the Microinsurance Innovation Facility's market study of BanRural clients in Guatemala in order to develop a better understanding of the health financing alternatives available to poor women in Guatemala and develop a hypothesis of the value that microinsurance might have for poor women. This hypothesis will be tested once Aseguradora Rural launches a new product aimed at covering women’s health needs and marketed to savings clients of BanRural in the last quarter of 2011.

MILK Discussion Note #1: Doing the Math: Can Delayed Payment of Claims Erode the Value of Life Microinsurance?

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One of the principal questions MILK seeks to answer is: Does microinsurance help protect people from large shocks (high cost events) in comparison to other alternatives? The problem in the Philippines shines a light on the subtleties at play in this question.

MILK Brief #14: The business case for life microinsurance in the Philippines: Initial findings

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Life microinsurance has grown quickly and is well established throughout the Philippines, and as a result, the business case is widely assumed to be strong. The MILK project is working to test the accuracy of this assumption. The analysis focuses on a cluster of five programs that represent the broad range of life microinsurance activity in the Philippines: CARD, TSPI, Prudential, CLIMBS, and MicroEnsure. Life microinsurance is among the simplest types of microinsurance in terms of product design. It is also a product line for which the business case is often seen as the clearest.

MILK Brief #13: Doing the Math - Funeral and life microinsurance in the Philippines

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For this brief, the MILK team partnerned with the global microinsurance broker MicroEnsure and the microfinance institution Taytay Sa Kauswagan Inc. (TSKI) in the Iloilo province of Panay island in the Philippines, using its Client Math methodology to explore some of the open questions about the value of a combined funeral and life insurance product for low-income clients.

MILK Brief #12 - Doing the Math in Karnataka, India

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This study investigates the financial value of a health microinsurance product offered to clients of the microfinance institution Grameen Koota in India. Families that recently suffered one of several similar illnesses resulting in hospitalisation were interviewed, and the study found that insured respondents had substantially lower direct hospital expenditures than uninsured patients. However, the relative benefit of the insurance becomes less apparent when other associated costs are taken into account, including indirect expenses and in particular, opportunity costs.

MILK Brief #11 - Doing the Math - Health Microinsurance in Maharashtra, India

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The MILK project partnered with the global insurance intermediary MicroEnsure to study the extent to which a health microinsurance product covering inpatient care offered value to clients in terms of reduced spending and improved access. There is strong evidence that insurance can reduce the out-of-pocket spending for families when large health crises hit, though the extent of this protection depends on the specific product features, exactly how benefits are delivered, and the socio-economic characteristics of the target community.

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