The Polish Insurance Association (PIU) presented a report called ‘How insurance changes Poland and the Poles’ <DOWNLOAD REPORT>, describing the impact of the insurance industry on people’s lives, on the economy and companies. Polish insurers give two million Poles access to health insurance, protect PLN 1.7 trillion worth of company assets and create 225,000 jobs. The PIU report is the first of its kind in Central and Eastern Europe.

Economic potential
Insurance does not only have a direct impact on people, but also protects their health, life and property. It is also a key component of the economy. According to the report prepared by PIU in cooperation with Deloitte, insurers in Poland create 225,000 jobs, out of which nearly 200,000 are in sectors other than insurance. Jobs are created, above all, in trade, vehicle repair, financial and real estate sectors. They are created not only thanks to compensation payments but also, among other things, thanks to the purchases or investments of the insurers.

Protection of Polish family homes
Although in comparison to Western European countries our tendency to take out insurance is still low, the awareness of the threats related to health, life and property is constantly growing. In 2016 approx. 60% of homes were covered against natural disasters. Protection against fire, explosions and natural disasters provided by the insurers yielded PLN 1.3 billion worth of compensations in 2016. Additionally, PLN 1.5 billion was paid out, among other things, for damages caused by hail, frost and all types of thefts.
– Without insurance the quality of our lives would fall drastically. We would have to dip into our savings for every fortuity, and the cost of most of these fortuities exceed the savings of an average Pole – says Jan Grzegorz Prądzyński, President of PIU.

Protection of life, health and old age pensions
In 2016 as many as 4.5 million people received life insurance benefits. This is a key support for families in the face of major tragedies, such as the death of an immediate family member. Life insurance also plays an important role in accumulating long-term savings. By saving regularly we can increase our old age pension by even 25%. This is all the more important as in the near future we will live for 23 years after retirement. In the context of demographic change, it is also essential to stay healthy for as long as possible. Thanks to insurers, 2 million Poles are able to use private insurance, guaranteeing themselves quick access to physicians and modern diagnostics.
– The report ‘How insurance changes Poland and the Poles’, shows that insurance is not just an important part of the Polish economy, generating 225,000 jobs, but that it is an institution of public trust which performs important social functions that will become increasingly important as the wealth of Polish citizens increases – says Irena Pichola, Deloitte Partner, Sustainability Consulting Central Europe Team Leader.

Transport and travel protection
The most common type of insurance are motor insurance policies. Every year insurers pay out PLN 12 billion worth of compensation for accidents, collisions and stolen vehicles. We also travel abroad ever more frequently in our own vehicles (not only cars). In 2017 as many as 4.2 million people spent their holidays abroad. The report prepared by PIU and Deloitte shows that we are becoming ever more aware tourists. The cost of travel benefits paid out in 2016 amounted to approx. PLN 170 million. This amount covered the costs of treatment, lost baggage and patient transport.

Less risk in running a business
The insurance sector is not only about protecting private property, but also property and financial insurance for companies. In 2016 insurers covered a turnover of companies worth PLN 460 billion, i.e. the equivalent of a quarter of Poland’s economy. Along with the expansion of Polish companies abroad, the need to protect their business in other countries increases. Last year more than PLN 114 billion worth of Polish export was insured. Insurance also covers 60% of Polish companies’ assets. The sum insured for all the assets of the companies in our country amounts to PLN 1.7 trillion. The report prepared by PIU and Deloitte is the first document to specify this value.

A full version of the report is available HERE, as well as on the website dziekiubezpieczeniom.pl.

On 9–10 May 2016, the 5th Congress of the Polish Insurance Association – the most important discussion forum for the insurance industry in Poland, gathering representatives of the parliament, government administration, financial supervision and insurers in Sopot every year – was held. This year’s Congress was visited by a record number of guests – more than 260. The Congress was opened by:

This year’s meeting included most predominantly discussions on the insurer’s impact on the environment, security, reputation, innovation in insurance and legal regulations related to insurance intermediation. The Speaker of the Polish Sejm, Mr Marek Kuchciński, addressed a letter related to the Congress to the President of the Polish Insurance Association.

Letter from Mr Marek Kuchciński, Speaker of the Sejm of the Republic of Poland

Photos from the Congress and videos presenting individual discussion panels will be provided on the PIU website soon. Presentations delivered during specialist panels of the 5th PIU Congress are available below. They were dedicated to:

– The impact of insurance on the economy and society and announcement of a future PIU report in this respect
– Traffic safety and announcement of a future PIU report in this respect
– Innovation in insurance
– New regulations on insurance intermediation

On 10 May 2017, the General Assembly of the Polish Insurance Association granted the “In recognition of service to the insurance industry” awards. This is an industry-specific award granted to a person working in the interest of the insurance sector, including researchers dealing with the subject area of insurance or promoting knowledge of insurance, as well as to other natural or legal persons who have significantly contributed to the development of insurance in Poland.
The awards have been received by:

On 10 May 2017 the General Assembly of the Polish Insurance Association elected members of the PIU Audit Committee for the years 2017–2020. The PIU Audit Committee comprises the following persons:

The PIU Audit Committee comprises the following persons:

Piotr Dzikiewicz
Sławomir Łopalewski
Jarosław Matusiewicz
Piotr Narloch
Roman Pałac
Jarosław Parkot
Aneta Podyma
Paweł Surówka
Piotr M. Śliwicki
Adam Uszpolewicz
Anna Włodarczyk-Moczkowska

 

Data for the entire 2016 demonstrate that the number of persons holding additional health insurance has increased by almost 30% as compared to the previous year, reaching 1.86 million of those insured. Data of the Polish Insurance Association demonstrate that the gross premium written amounted to PLN 547.2 million – an increase by more than 13%.

Group insurance, usually purchased by employers or the employees themselves, continues to represent the largest part of the additional health insurance market, with more than 1.47 million people covered. Nonetheless, it is the group of individual insurance that noted the largest increase, of as much as 42% year on year.
“The growing popularity of this type of insurance makes it no longer the domain of large corporations only. An increasing number of small and medium enterprises and public administration bodies decide to provide additional protection to their employees,” explains Dorota M. Fal, health insurance specialist and adviser to the Management Board of the Polish Insurance Association for health insurance. “Such policies supplement the public healthcare system and come as a response to its shortcomings, namely poor access to consultants and certain hospital procedures, in particular surgical ones. Health insurance offered by the employer is a very popular bonus which not only increases the attractiveness of a given company, but also brings it tangible benefits in the form of reduced absenteeism and presenteeism of employees,” she adds.

Individual insurance Group insurance
2015 2016 2015 2016
Number of insured (thousand) 272 386.1 1,164.7 1,475.3
Gross premium written (PLN million) 74.7 82.7 408.8 464.5

We invite you to study the “Insurance Figures 2016” brochure, which includes key data on the insurance market in Poland. Among others, it includes data concerning the insurers’ assets, damages paid and premiums collected. The brochure also contains information about the premiums collected on the insurance markets in individual countries in Europe.

“Insurance Figures 2016” brochure

 

We invite you to study the most recent report on the bancassurance market in Poland.

 

Report

 

In 2016, Polish insurers paid out PLN 36.6 billion in compensation and benefits to the injured and customers. This is 4.6% more than last year.

Key figures of the insurance market in 2016

 

Motor insurance market

Key figures:

“Compensation and benefit payments are increasing, while the increase in premiums that occurred in 2016 prevented higher losses on third-party liability insurance. It has to be emphasised that the increase in premiums requires insurers to establish higher reserves, therefore the full effect of the increase will appear in the insurers’ accounts after several or even few dozen months from their introduction. To date, the third-party civil liability market remains unprofitable, with a loss of PLN 1 billion,” says Jan Grzegorz Prądzyński, President of PIU.

 

Non-life insurance market (Section II exclusive of motor vehicle insurance).

Key figures:

“In 2016, the key events on the non-life market were huge damages connected with agricultural crops. Insurance protection enabled to compensate for losses in crops caused mainly by unfavourable weather conditions,” explains Andrzej Maciążek, Vice-President of the Management Board of PIU.

 

Life insurance market

Key figures:

“In the life insurance market we are still observing a decrease in the premium from investment-type insurance. The new legal regulations that have been in force since the beginning of 2016 have had an impact on a decrease in sales in this segment, but at the same time made customers more consciously in selecting service options,” says J. Grzegorz Prądzyński.

 

Financial results of insurers

The technical result on life insurance amounted to PLN 3 billion and was 6% higher than the year before. The technical result of non-life insurers amounted to PLN 350 million and was 56.5% higher than in 2015. The income tax due from Polish insurers for 2016 amounted to PLN 1 billion, whereas the tax on assets – to approximately PLN 620 million.

 

 

After three quarters of 2016 the number of private health insurance holders increased YoY by 28% and reached 1.76 million. Data of the Polish Insurance Association demonstrate that the gross premium written amounted to PLN 399.1 million.

Most frequently held insurance (more than 1.4 million) comes in the form of group policies, usually purchased by employers or the employees themselves. “In Poland, additional health insurance usually forms part of social benefits. The growing queues to consultants and uncertainties related to ongoing changes in healthcare cause higher interest in private insurance among the customers with an increasing scope,” says Dorota M. Fal, adviser to the Management Board of the Polish Insurance Association for health insurance. “More and more often, PIU receives, through the www.polisynazdrowie.pl website, questions from potential customers concerning health insurance including hospital services. There is also increasing interest in drug policies, which secure our spending on medicines against changes related to their reimbursement,” she adds.

Health insurance market after Q3 2016

Individual insurance Group insurance
Q3 2015 Q3 2016 Q3 2015 Q3 2016
Number of insured (thousand) 244.7 350.5 1,137 1,414.3
Gross premium written (PLN million) 50.5 56.6 305.7 342.4

Many people plan a skiing trip during the winter holidays. Their plans include skiing not only in the Polish Tatra Mountains, but also abroad, in Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Austria, Italy, Switzerland or France. However, before we set out to another country, it is worth securing oneself should medical assistance become necessary.

How not to lose a fortune when travelling for a holiday?
Although very useful, the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) does not ensure full and free medical care, mountain rescue abroad and medical transport to Poland. Unfortunately, the costs of such interventions may reach several hundred and even tens of thousands euro. Therefore, to protect your home budget, it is worth securing tourist insurance that will cover the potential costs related to an unforeseen event and decrease waiting time for appropriate benefits. In many European countries we must be ready to co-finance medical services. Therefore, it is advisable to find out in advance how medical care in the country we are travelling to is organised. Additional insurance will allow us to fully enjoy the holiday.

The basics: EHIC
Each person travelling abroad should carry an EHIC, confirming eligibility for medical services outside of Poland. More importantly, each member of the family must have their own document and a number of copies thereof, as it is often required to be left at the medical establishment.

In the Czech Republic you have to pay for services1
At our southern neighbours’ an EHIC holder will benefit from free consultation of primary care doctors. Where a visit to a hospital emergency department is involved, the EHIC holder has to pay a one-off fee of 90 crowns. The costs of treatment at an establishment operating outside the public healthcare system are to be fully paid by the patient. Where the patient sought emergency medical assistance at private establishments, he/she may claim partial reimbursement of the costs involved.
Note! An EHIC holder is not eligible for medical treatment provided by the mountain rescue service in connection with a skiing accident. The patient is obliged to cover full costs of such aid on his/her own.

Payable mountain rescue in Slovakia2
In Slovakia primary care and outpatient specialist care services are free of charge. In the case of a visit to the emergency service, a one-off fee of EUR 1.99 is charged; however, it is cancelled when the patient requires hospitalization. Ambulance transport, including air ambulance, is free of charge, but the same benefits provided by the mountain rescue must be fully paid for by the injured.

Payable stay at a hospital in Austria3
In Austria, in the case of hospital treatment not longer than 28 days the patient has to pay from EUR 12 to EUR 20.1 per day. The basic standard hospital stay includes accommodation and medical service. Employees of the hospital may present the patient with the option of hospitalisation with improved care standard, but in such case he/she has to take additional costs into account. Transport to the hospital is free of charge in the event of threat to life or when the doctor considers that the patient’s condition so requires. Important – mountain rescue and air transport are non-reimbursable!

Free hospital treatment in Italy4
In Italy, the costs of primary care medical advice have to be paid for by the patient – up to EUR 36.15 for a visit. Consultant services will be partially financed by the National Health Fund (NFZ). Interestingly, hospital treatment in Italy is free of charge, however the EHIC holder will have to contribute to the transport. It is worth knowing that in many resorts there are only private doctors’ establishments, which do not recognise the EHIC. Moreover, health benefits associated with the consequences of sport accidents may be subject to higher charges than standard healthcare services.

In Switzerland you have to pay for a GP visit5
The EHIC holder has to pay 33 francs in the case of minors and 92 francs for adults for advice of a general practitioner, a consultant, a dentist or stationary hospital treatment. Furthermore, the cost of hospitalisation is 15 francs per day. Children and persons up to 25 years of age who continue to learn are exempt from the fee. Pregnant women using health care services are exempt from these charges. However, every patient using medical road or aircraft transport, including in the event of mountain rescue, is obliged to cover 50% of the costs.

In France the surcharge for a GP visit is 30%6
A patient enjoying healthcare benefits on the basis of the EHIC in France has to first cover the costs by him/herself and may apply for their partial reimbursement. The cost of primary care physician’s and dentist’s consultation amounts to EUR 23, whereas of consultant’s consultation – EUR 25. To recover the costs, a set of relevant documents has to be filed with the French health care fund. In such case 70% of the costs shall be reimbursed upon return to the country. What is important, if the doctor we are visiting is charging a fee higher than the rates set in the health care fund’s price list, the patient has to pay the difference by him/herself. In the case of hospital treatment, the health care fund covers 80% of treatment costs; 100% in some cases only. The patient must cover the remaining 20%, including the daily lump-sum fee. Mountain rescue cost is 100% paid by the injured.

How to select a tourist policy tailored to your needs?
Let us remember to think carefully what protection we need and who should it cover before purchasing policies. One policy may protect one or several persons, for example the entire family. In addition to medical care, a tourist policy usually covers the costs of destroyed or lost luggage, abandonment of accommodation already paid for or damage to electronic or sports equipment. Where we become responsible for an accident, for instance on the ski slope, civil liability insurance covers the costs of victim treatment or repair of his/her equipment.
Usually, tourist insurance enables us to select two options concerning the sports practised: amateur or competitive, and each insurer defines these categories differently. The General Terms and Conditions of Insurance often specify individual disciplines. Before signing an agreement, we have to read the document and decide which option is appropriate for us. If there are any questions as to the scope of protection, we should request the insurer to provide explanations, for instance through the hotline. A tourist policy may be purchased in many ways. Contact with an insurance agent remains the most popular one. Insurance may also be contracted over the internet or via a hotline. The cost of a tourist policy for the entire family for a two-week trip should not exceed several hundred PLN.

[1] https://www.ekuz.nfz.gov.pl/wypoczynek/wyjezdzam-do/czechy
[2] https://www.ekuz.nfz.gov.pl/wypoczynek/wyjezdzam-do/slowacja
[3] https://www.ekuz.nfz.gov.pl/wypoczynek/wyjezdzam-do/austria
[4] https://www.ekuz.nfz.gov.pl/wypoczynek/wyjezdzam-do/wlochy
[5] https://www.ekuz.nfz.gov.pl/wypoczynek/wyjezdzam-do/szwajcaria
[6] https://www.ekuz.nfz.gov.pl/wypoczynek/wyjezdzam-do/francja