Posted on Jan 18, 2011 by Sergio Ulloa
The international health insurer CIGNA has announced plans to expand its expatriate benefits network in Africa. This will augment the US-based insurer's African resource base to a total of 47,500 doctors and healthcare workers and increase its range of access to hospitals on the African continent. The expansion of CIGNA's network in Africa means that the US insurer's worldwide network now nears 900,000 healthcare professionals operating in 27 countries.
CIGNA is one the global leaders in the provision of medical services for expatriate workers and will add 500 doctors and hospitals to its CIGNALinks network in Nigeria and Egypt. The increase in healthcare professionals and facilities in the two Africa countries will be completed through a new alliance with the Medical Services Organization based in South Africa.
The expansion in the range of CIGNA's expatriate benefits now means the health insurer is able to provide more healthcare services to its policyholders and maintain it global presence as one of the leading international health insurance companies.
CIGNA's senior director for Global Health Solutions, Timothy Blevins, said "CIGNALinks in Africa is designed to offer customers substantial discounts when accessing the local network for care and to reduce out-of-pocket costs at the time that care is delivered."
The key advantage of using the CIGNALinks network is that it provides members with an easy process for making claims and healthcare payments as the scheme is designed to be administration friendly, operating through links with local healthcare organizations. CIGNA clients have 24/7 access to CIGNA customer services organization worldwide.
CIGNA has over 700,000 expatriate customers across more than 200 countries. The recent increase in the CIGNALink's network in Africa means that access is now available to approximately 900,000 medical specialists and a comprehensive range of hospital and healthcare facilities worldwide, cementing the international health insurer's status on the global stage.
CIGNA's expansion of expatriate benefit cover will now include two of Africa's most populous countries, with strong expatriate communities. Nigeria
is a country which attracts expatriates to work in the large scale oil and gas industries in the country, while Egypt
is a highly developed African nation with a wide range of industrial activity.
CIGNA, like most international insurers, has been looking to grow its position in global insurance markets in order to offset its relatively static position in the USA. The recent increase in the CIGNALinks network will enable the insurer to maintain a competitive edge as an expatriate health provider.
provides insurance plans to cover medical, dental, vision, accident, pharmacy, life and disabilities, for international and expatriate clients. Further growth in CIGNA's network coverage is known to include expansion into emerging Asia-Pacific markets with India and Turkey being identified as specific targets. The Philadelphia-based health insurance company acquired Belgium's Vanbreda International
in 2010 to give increased access to the expatriate health insurance market.
CIGNA is preparing to announce its financial results for 2010 in February 2011; the insurer reported third quarter 2010 net income of US$307 million - down from US$329 million - in the same period in 2009.
Insurance Company Mentioned:
A global health service company dedicated to helping people improve their health, well being and sense of security. CIGNA Corporation's operating subsidiaries provide an integrated suite of medical, dental, behavioural health, pharmacy and vision care benefits, as well as group life, accident and disability insurance, to approximately 46 million people throughout the United States and around the world.