FWD Takaful and Naluri Hidup partner to offer digital therapeutics programme as part of cancer plan
By Tan Jee Yee February 6, 2020
- FWD Care Direct customers get access to Naluri’s platform upon cancer diagnosis
- Naluri’s platform offers, among others, mental health support for chronic disease patients
FWD Takaful Bhd (formerly known as HSCB Amanah Takaful Malaysia) on Feb 5 signed a partnership agreement with Naluri Hidup Sdn Bhd to offer the latter’s “Digital Therapeutics Programme” to FWD’s Care Direct plan customers.
Naluri is a digital treatment programme that essentially connects users of their app to a team of health professionals that range from health psychologists to dieticians and fitness coaches. As part of the partnership, FWD Care Direct customers will be able to activate an account with Naluri at the point of claims post-diagnosis.
“The Digital Therapeutics Programme will provide an optional value-added service for our FWD Care Direct customers that is personalised to support their emotional, mental and physical needs upon cancer diagnosis,” explains FWD Takaful chief executive officer Salim Majid Zain.
He further explains that the programme is part of FWD Takaful’s goal to “change the way people feel about takaful.
“That means showing people that we are there for them every step of the way and helping them achieve better health outcomes by building the necessary mental resilience to cope with their specific health challenges,” he adds.
“We’re excited to partner with an innovative takaful provider like FWD Takaful who is re-thinking takaful beyond just protection, but also to enhance the quality of life of its customers who’re dealing with cancer,” chips in Naluri chief executive officer Azran Osman-Rani.
“Naluri’s digital application will provide access to health coaching that combines much needed, but often neglected, psychological support with disease and lifestyle management.”
The FWD Care Direct plan is billed as the takaful provider’s first online Family Takaful cancer plan, and is described as “quick and easy to apply for via online”. It provides coverage from US$24,265 to US$60,663 (RM100,000 to RM250,000 ), as well as 100% pay-out upon diagnosis of cancer, even at early stages.
Besides that, FWD Care Direct also offers cancer protection for a family of four in one single plan.
How Naluri factors into this is to offer their human-driven, AI-augmented digital treatment programme to Care Direct customers who have been diagnosed with cancer, especially when it comes to mental health support.
Speaking from experience with his father’s own cancer diagnosis, Azran says that those afflicted with chronic diseases also wrestle with mood disorders, like depression, anxiety and stress. “Healthcare providers treating chronic disease patients are not equipped to mental support for their patients,” he adds.
Yet mental health for chronic disease patients are just as important, Azran says, as those who are too pressured by uncertainties and questions often miss appointments and worsen conditions.
He adds that there are inherently issues when it comes to mental healthcare in Malaysia, lack of access being one of them. There are simply too few practicing clinical psychologists and medical psychiatrists in the country to cover the number of chronic disease patients requiring mental healthcare.
Following that, getting mental healthcare appointments in public hospitals leads to long waits – Azran says that the wait list goes as long as nine to 12 months. Beyond that, however, stigma associated to mental health is also something to overcome.
Azran believes this can be solved via digital therapeutic solutions. Getting help with Naluri only requires a smartphone and Internet connectivity, without the need to make appointments. Naluri currently has more than 8,000 users on their platform, and claims that 50 to 60% of them saw improvements to their health.