Trio of specialists launches pre-assignment health screening for expat employees

Willis Employee Benefits Limited, has partnered with Now Health International and Healix International to offer clients with fewer than 99 expatriates unique medical plans designed to fulfil employees’ healthcare needs outside their home country.

Female doctor and man in suit
A special feature of the medical plan is access to online pre-assignment medical screening for employees and their dependents. Michelle Bishop, Client Development Manager, Willis Employee Benefits, said, "There are limited products available on the market that enable up-front risk management specific to an employee's health. This will be the first medical plan to include pre-assignment screening as standard."Willis believes that many of the illnesses and health related problems suffered by business travellers and expatriates whilst overseas are both predictable and preventable. However large numbers of business travellers, expatriates, and their families are sent overseas with pre-existing medical conditions and little or no knowledge about how those conditions may best be managed in their destination countries. This results in significant disruption, failed assignments, and, in many cases, serious illness, unplanned medical evacuations and significant costs.Tony Powis, CEO of Willis Employee Benefits, said, "One of the key concerns our multinational clients raise is in relation to assignment failure. The benefits of pre-assignment screening are wide-ranging and it is an excellent risk mitigation tool for managing some of the broader risks associated with a globally mobile workforce. By integrating this within the medical plan we are able to deliver to our clients a more effective solution."For risk managers, the screening allows the provision of management information on medical risks associated with the location, specific to the employee and their family, prior to the assignment taking place and information on the potential long term cost implications for the organisation.For HR professionals, it allows an auditable process through which employers can fulfil their duty of care requirements by facilitating pre-trip advice and guidance which is specific to the individual's medical needs and location of assignment. This simple feature also acts as a method of reducing employee liability exposure.Martin Garcia, CEO of Now Health International, said, "Now Health is well placed to provide fast, accurate service to those employees who need access to healthcare anywhere in the world. The partnership with Willis and Healix offers a truly unique offering in the market today."The medical plan is administered by Now Health International, and the pre-assignment screening element is provided by Healix International.

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