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In January 2019, the Medical Aid Society of Malawi (MASM) migrated its operations to a new and more robust IT System. The new system known as Holistic Insurance Platform (HIP) is now in place and is being used for membership management, claims processing and payments as well as management of queries.

Speaking recently at MASM House in Blantyre, CEO Sydney Chikoti said the new HIP System has improved the way things are done at MASM as it has improved the turn-around time for claims processing and payment.

“With HIP, we are able to process claims and make payments faster than before. Our operations have been streamlined such that we are capable of making more than one payment to service providers in a month,” said Chikoti.

He said the HIP System is also more interactive as it provides access to the system by members, service providers as well as employers (member firms) to access information relating to their membership through Web Portals that can be accessed through the system. Once fully implemented, service providers who have complied by investing in technology will in the future be able to submit their claims electronically, which will substantially reduce the use of stationery, currently one of the major expenses.

Chikoti explained that on the governance front, Board approved that the Society’s Financial Year be changed from January-December to June-July.

“With this change, it means we had to realign all our operational plans to be in line with the new financial year. This obviously affected our budgets, audits, revision of scheme benefits as well as our calendar for the Annual General Meeting (AGM),” he said.

On the revision of Scheme benefits, there has been very exciting developments as MASM has increased benefits and also introduced some new benefits that were not available. The Annual Benefit limits have been revised as follows; on VIP Scheme from MK 20 million to MK 40 million, on Executive Scheme from MK 15 million to MK 20 million and on Econoplan Scheme from MK 2.5 million to MK 4 million.

Some of the benefits that have also been enhanced include; Dental Services, Foreign Treatment, Olphthamology services, among others.

“Other good news is that we have introduced separate benefit limits of up to MK 20 million for Dialysis and Oncology benefits,” he said.

“We also understand that in some cases babies are born with complications that can be expensive to manage and in the past this tended to put a burden mother’s annual benefit limit. With this in mind, we have introduced a separate Neonate Benefit of up to MK 10 million to ensure that the baby is well cared for and that the mother’s benefits are preserved,” said Chikoti.

Talking about the AGM, Chikoti urged all members to attend this year’s AGM which is planned for later in the year, probably end November.

“This is a very important event on our calendar as we get to report back to our members, who are the owners of the Society, about how the Society has performed during the past period as well as provide a glimpse of how the views the future. So it is very important that members turn up to attend the AGM,” he said.

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