PROMOTING HEALTH AND WELLBEING
Tal Hisham Nazer
MD/CEO, Bupa Arabia
“We have worked diligently over the past 20 years to become the most trusted health insurance company in the Arab world,” said Tal Hisham Nazer CEO of Bupa Arabia, “We continue to prioritize our customers’ needs by providing the best products and services, as we strive to become a leader in the health insurance industry locally and internationally.”
Bupa Arabia is a pioneer that transformed the health insurance industry in Saudi Arabia with the support of capital partner, Bupa, from building local infrastructure to implementing the basic logistics.
Nazer says that innovation has been one of the drivers of their success and it has become the bedrock of the company culture “The work culture that we’ve cultivated over the years is incredible. And I am proud of the growing number of female employees in our business, which currently exceeds 30 percent of our workforce - probably the highest percentage among the publicly listed companies in Saudi.”
We aspire to surpass our current positioning by enhancing our products through the process of innovation, which can only be achieved through the hard work and dedication of our employees
Mirroring the ambition of the Kingdom, education is a priority for Bupa Arabia and the company constantly aims to innovate and reinvent itself to meet the ever-changing demands of its customers. Customers are becoming more tech-savvy, which pushes Bupa Arabia to adapt from a basic health insurance company into a more technologically sophisticated one.
For example, it developed Rahatkom and Tebtom, a wellness program that has served more than two million customers with healthcare services. Both programs simplify processes and decrease the wait time for customers, significantly enhancing the customer experience. Nazer states, “A large part of our continued success is due to our ability to quickly adapt and enhance our products and services to meet our customers’ growing needs.”
Like many industries, technology is changing the operating environment. Accordingly, Bupa Arabia has committed to disrupting the health insurance industry through digitization. It recently invested in its own digital factory that focuses on developing and introducing new and innovative ideas to the Saudi market.
Additionally, it focuses on the overall wellness and quality of life of Saudi residents by raising awareness on the importance of owning health insurance and pushing the younger generations to be healthier and more active.
Nazer concludes, “As a company with a dynamic background and unique offering with a track record of consistent growth and strong results, the opening of the market globally signifies high potential for growth, which in turn will allow us to increase the offerings available to our residents.”
2 millionCustomers served to date by its wellness services Rahatkom and Tebtom
Established more than 20 years ago, Bupa Arabia was one of the first health insurance companies in the Kingdom. As a pioneer in the sector with millions of members, it has played a key role in developing the market. It is the country’s largest healthcare services provider, boasting international standards of service.
And with millions of Saudis still uninsured, the sector is expected to benefit from significant growth drivers, including a gap between supply and demand and the high prevalence of chronic diseases. The economic transformation underway and the government’s focus on healthcare are also providing opportunities, such as the new requirement for all Umrah and tourist visitors to have health insurance.
As part of its focus on customer experience, the company has developed some core programs. Its Tebtbom holistic healthcare program provides a range of services under one banner, including chronic illness management and maternity support. So far, more than two million people have taken advantage of the service. In addition, the Rahatkom program has been created to manage customer experience and ensure a flawless patient journey.
Bupa Arabia innovates to stay ahead in the market and provide the best service to its customers. It has created a specialist department called ‘Digital Factory,’ which focuses on creating a seamless digital customer experience and using emerging technologies, such as artificial intelligence, to enhance the company’s offerings.
Healthcare is a key focus of Vision 2030, which includes a plan to improve access to health services, improve the quality and efficiency of healthcare and promote the prevention of health risks. Bupa Arabia supports this with quality health insurance, its awareness programs and by meeting the health insurance needs of small- and medium-sized enterprises, which are often not covered by insurers.
The company has also been successful in recruiting Saudi talent and is promoting diversity, with women making up 33 percent of its 1,800-strong workforce.
33% of Bupa Arabia’s 1,800 employees are women
Re-shaping the health insurance industry through innovative programs
Established in 1997 as a joint venture with Bupa Group in the UK, Bupa Arabia was one of the first health insurance companies in Saudi Arabia. In 2008, Bupa Arabia evolved to become a publicly traded company on the Saudi Exchange, in what turned out to be the most successful IPO ever floated for an insurance company, which was oversubscribed by 900 percent. Today, about 43 percent is owned by foreign investors.
As pioneers in the sector, Bupa Arabia tailors its products and services to serve the biggest Saudi companies like SABIC and NCB as well as SMEs and direct clients. Partnering with the UK-based health insurance giant Bupa enables Bupa Arabia to extract best practices and global medical guidelines from all around the world and localize them to fit the Saudi market. Bupa Arabia’s members benefit from a global network, which extends to over 10 countries and across five continents.
Bupa Arabia prides itself in being a healthcare partner rather than just a health insurance provider. Thus, it is always looking to improve its customer experience and to develop programs that touch patients’ daily lives. They have developed innovative programs to counter the health challenges that members and their families face. These two programs are Tebtom and Rahatkom.
The Tebtom program is a set of healthcare services that go beyond medical insurance coverage to provide members and their families with holistic healthcare. With an average of 55,000 members benefiting from the program on a monthly basis, Tebtom offers a bouquet of healthcare services such as home-based vaccinations and labs, medication refills for chronic diseases and international second opinion services.
The Rahatkom program is designed to facilitate the patients’ journeys inside the hospitals. Through this program, Bupa Arabia focuses on on-site case management, facilitates pre-authorization requests, and even, post-admission support. Waiting time can be reduced by 50 percent and customers have access to the company’s delegates and doctors across 70 hospitals. More than 40,000 members benefit from the Rahatkom services on a monthly basis.
With a more than 20-year successful track record, Bupa Arabia continues to offer its members the best medical insurance along with services and programs that enhance their journeys to healthier lives. In 2019, the company invested heavily in developing a department that is focused on digital innovations, which is tasked with enhancing the customer’s journey and increasing efficiency within the company.