According to a recent prediction by Diabetes UK, one in ten adults will be living with diabetes by 2030 and by 2050, more than 1.31 billion people are projected to have diabetes globally. This prediction is based on analysis of statistics from Public Health England and The Association of Public Health Observatories, and if true it would mean about 5.5 million in the UK will be living with this illness in only six years.
Currently, there are more than 3.8 million people diagnosed with diabetes in the UK alone, 90% of those with Type 2 and almost 1 million more people living with the chronic illness, who don’t know they have it. In the last five years, there has been an alarming acceleration in the number of people diagnosed with the illness with the amount diagnosed increasing by 18%. In the UK currently, 1 in 6 hospital beds are occupied by someone with Type 2 diabetes. By 2030 it is predicted this will rise to 1 in 4.
This huge increase is not just happening in the UK, this trend is being seen across Europe, the US, India and is shifting more of the world population into the previously ‘uninsurable’ group.
Below are some further figures, info and projections on the global impact of diabetes – IDF Diabetes Atlas
- Almost 1 in 2 adults (44%) with diabetes remain undiagnosed (240 million). The majority have Type 2 diabetes.
- 541 million adults are at increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
- Diabetes was responsible for at least $966 billion in health expenditure in 2021 – 9% of the global total spent on healthcare.
According to the latest UK government census, half of the UK population (45.7% of men and 50.1% of women) reported having a long-standing health problem and two fifth of men (37.9%) were overweight nearly a third of women (29.3%), based on a BMI score ranging between 25 and 29.9.
This data means there are about 15 million people in England who have a long-term condition or chronic disease which are managed with drugs and other treatment, for example: diabetes, high BMI and hypertension. This is a huge percentage of the population who will struggle to gain personalised cover such as life insurance as traditional policies make it very complex or too expensive for many of these individuals.
Understandably the industry has previously focused mainly on mass-market products to access the ‘easily insurable’ and deliver simple solutions that gained traction with this demographic. For anyone else, it has involved lengthy questionnaires, long-waiting times and this often means much higher premiums or no cover at all. This has resulted in an ever-increasing proportion of the population not having life protection and this gap is continuing to increase.
As the percentage of individuals with chronic illnesses continues to rise in the UK and globally, so does the number of individuals without life insurance cover or other policies such as health insurance.
At Bluezone, we are focused on supporting these individuals and we have recently launched our first policy for people diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. This is just the first in a range of policies we aim to offer for people with chronic illnesses. Our team includes a group of doctors, AI and insurance experts on a mission to improve the lives of those with chronic diseases by offering life insurance that empowers customers to live healthier lives.
To realise this mission, we’ll offer a lifestyle app to every customer that will deliver personalised guidance to live a longer, happier, healthier life. We’re already giving policyholders 1-year free access to the award-winning Gro Health App, which supports them to manage their Type 2 diabetes and live a healthy lifestyle.
We believe in building sustainable habits for the long term by taking a slow, deliberate and methodical approach to help you realise your ideal future version. We don’t believe in an intense lifestyle that makes you feel miserable and stressed. We prefer consistency over intensity and the power of compounding one’s health.
As the number of individuals with chronic illness continues to rise the insurance industry will hopefully adapt and focus more on offering cover to this largely ignored or forgotten population.
New buyers of life insurance have new preferences. They expect to buy the policy conveniently and promptly, they want to pay for their own health profile and not be grouped into pooled risks and expect to receive value whilst being a customer through digital services. Our new insurance product addresses these preferences by offering personalised cover with no manual underwriting that can be bought online for individuals with Type 2 diabetes.
Through our unique offering, we have already managed to offer final quotes within minutes. From November 2023 the NHS App will offer the UK public access to their health records including test results. This will allow our innovative underwriting approach (PURE) to offer same-day personalised quotes to high-risk Type 2 Diabetes individuals that would traditionally have to wait on average 3-months.
2024 is set to be an exciting year for the industry and for Bluezone as we aim to launch further innovations and partnerships to help even more people gain cover that struggled previously, and we also intend to start offering discounted health products via the Bluezone health store for those committed to improving their condition by making behavioural changes to their life.