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Friday, December 2, 2022
HomeEconomyFor Unimed, the pandemic reaffirms the importance of reforming the health plan...

For Unimed, the pandemic reaffirms the importance of reforming the health plan market

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The supplementary health regulatory framework reaches 25 years of existence in 2023, but Unimed has a history that goes beyond that period. The cooperative system won all 29 editions of the Health Plan category in Folha Top of Mind, and in 2021 it obtained its best results in the Datafolha survey in age groups that indicate the renewal of its audience: the memory index was 35% among respondents between 35 and 44 years old.

For Omar Abujamra Junior, president of Unimed do Brasil, the greater presence of the system in this study group is directly related to Covid-19. “This is an age group that comprises a large part of the economically active population, which consumes health plans and is increasingly concerned with adopting a routine of care with well-being, thinking about a healthier future. This behavior was accentuated with the pandemic”, he says.

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Also according to the president, Unimed’s performance in the care of the population during the last two years was fundamental to strengthen its reputation in the market. He cites the success of measures such as the emergency adoption of 550 care adequacy initiatives, the hiring of 13,000 health professionals and the expansion of ICU capacity, which helped the population to have the best care in the period of greater transmission of the coronavirus. .

But Abujamra also believes that Covid-19 has helped to bring up the discussion about the crisis in the health insurance sector in the country. He says that the market’s next steps are in the review of the regulatory framework and in the more technical debate about its functioning.

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“We need to discuss how to make the system more effective and efficient, ensuring that resources already allocated by society are turned into better care”, he explains.

Unimed won all 29 editions of the Health Plan Top of Mind. What is the assessment of this history? In addition to the great satisfaction of being part of the entire history of the Top of Mind award, Unimed’s constant presence means the recognition that our work significantly impacts the daily lives of a large part of the population. This constant reminder on the part of consumers reinforces the trust placed in our work and reflects the perception of our commitment to promoting high-quality care, at all times in the lives of our customers and in all regions of the country.

What were the main changes in the health insurance sector in the 32 years of existence of the Datafolha survey? Over the years, supplementary health has undergone several important advances, which have important milestones in the regulation of the sector and in the creation of the National Agency for Supplementary Health.

Since then, a series of developments can be seen, both with regard to the operation of health plans and in people’s access to private services. Medical cooperatives have been the fastest growing segment in supplementary health since the early 2000s, both in large centers and in the interior of the country.

A significant change, which took place in the wake of the regulation of the supplementary health market in recent years, was the investment in hospitals and its own services, a strategy that contributes even more to making possible the internalization of quality medicine and the expansion of the country’s health infrastructure. . The local services are high value-added initiatives, which offer differentiated conditions for the exercise of medical work and the retention of professionals in the countryside, providing a differentiated assistance guarantee at a sustainable cost and promoting the generation of jobs and investments in local communities.

In the 2021 Datafolha survey, Unimed was remembered by 45% of respondents aged between 35 and 44. How do you evaluate this data? This is an age group that comprises a large part of the economically active population, which consumes health plans and is increasingly concerned with adopting a routine of care with well-being, thinking about a healthier future. This behavior was accentuated with the Covid-19 pandemic and was reflected in the memory of Unimed by this audience.

What is the balance of the impact of the pandemic on business? The Unimed System’s performance was fundamental in dealing with the pandemic, which further strengthened our reputation in the market. In periods of greater intensity of transmission of the coronavirus, emergency actions were taken in more than 550 initiatives to adapt the service network and more than 13,000 health professionals and technicians were hired to work on the front line in urgent and emergency situations. emergency.

We also expanded our capacity of ICU beds already installed by 58% in the first year of the pandemic, opened 12 field hospitals at the most critical moments and created specialized care centers to accompany patients with physical and emotional consequences post-Covid.

Our Unimeds were still a reference for the whole society with communication actions that brought people together, participating in lives and disseminating campaigns that contributed to consolidate the brand as a reference in reliable information at a time of great insecurity and dissemination of fake news. We were even highlighted by the International Cooperative Alliance as an example in dealing with the pandemic and a prominent brand.

What are Unimed’s next steps? The Unimed brand completes 55 years of existence in 2022. In order to ensure the continuity of our brand, we are preparing a major repositioning move. In addition to redefining our organizational identity, we now have a single purpose for the entire system, which is based on integrated strategic planning. This even culminates in the modernization of our brand and the updating of language drivers, always emphasizing a systemic and human vision, as well as the dissemination of knowledge.

What are the forecasts for the market? The health insurance sector is facing its most intense crisis since the regulation in the late 1990s. This is a direct reflection of the demand shocks caused by the Covid-19 pandemic and also of the increase in inflation and mainly in the costs of inputs, materials and medicines. Before the pandemic, health spending already represented 9.6% of national GDP, with 60% being private spending, that is, by families. In addition, important health issues have been addressed without any technical debate about their feasibility.

We need to discuss how to make the system more effective and efficient, ensuring that resources already allocated by society are turned into better care and better health indicators for the population. With regard to supplementary health, it is essential to recover the pillars of assistance security, legal security and economic-financial security of the sector, in addition to reviewing the regulatory framework to enable a greater portion of the Brazilian population to have access to the social protection of insurance plans. health.

In your opinion, what is important for a brand to be Top of Mind? Attributes such as the offer of quality products, recognition of its public, presence in people’s daily lives, a clear vision of the company’s values, consistency in its purpose and credibility are fundamental requirements to remain in the memory of Brazilians – especially in the segment of health, in which safety and trust attributes are fundamental. Unimed has been consolidating its reputation thanks to the continuous and perennial effort to reaffirm its role as a system with great authority in the management of the population’s health.

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