The impact of Covid-19 in India, and across the world, has caused many to suffer – be it loss of health, wealth or life itself. And yet, we cannot stop planning with hope for the coming year, with attention on challenges in healthcare that remain unsolved.
Even today, 330 million employees in India are uncovered with employee benefits. And in today’s context, it is imperative for every employee to have the right health benefits for themselves and their families.
Inspired by the concept of “sachetisation”, many businesses have adopted this mechanism to offer compact products and services to their target audience. This helps in impacting more lives in a shorter span of time. Sachetisation of healthcare, for example, has far-fetched benefits when it comes to easy consumption and accessibility for the masses.
As of today, 55 per cent of new employment in India is generated through gig workers working in companies – across both blue-collar and white-collar sectors.
Many members of the MSME (micro, small and medium enterprises) workforce do not have formal employment opportunities. These on-contract or off-payroll employees, gig-workers etc, work as hard or sometimes more than their full-time co-workers. This is a huge segment which is underserved and will keep growing.
Womenpreneurs who are now taking up opportunities to suit their schedule, have created a pool of demand with other startups to access platforms with capabilities that extend healthcare to their underserved employees.
A big challenge here is employer awareness. Many are not aware of the offerings by new-age healthcare companies, offering health coverage to this ‘undeserved’ segment. A start-up with as few as three members can also be eligible to provide its team with health benefits along with complete group health insurance. This covers employees, gig-workers, their siblings, parents, spouse’s parents and live-in partners.
In 2023, the Indian Insuretech (where technology is used to deliver insurance benefits) sector is expected to see continued growth and innovation. With increasing demand for the need of better healthcare coverage, the cost of these wellness benefits has reduced by nearly 50 percent, which is highly in favour of MSMEs.
The New Year is one of fresh hope for healthcare in India and businesses must strive to realise their vision, while also taking care of employee well-being through tailor-made solutions from healthcare start-ups.
The writer is Founder and CEO of Onsurity, a health-tech company providing healthcare solutions to MSMEs. Views are personal.