INSURANCE SHORTS

Health insurers coy on campaign expenditures

MOST health insurance companies in Slovakia have not announced how much they plan to spend on this year’s advertising campaign to lure customers, SITA wrote on September 9.

MOST health insurance companies in Slovakia have not announced how much they plan to spend on this year’s advertising campaign to lure customers, SITA wrote on September 9.

The state-run Všeobecná Zdravotná Poisťovňa (VšZP) will have the figure at its disposal just after the campaign ends, as marketing activities are still pending. The final sum will be calculated just after the close of the campaign, said Petra Balážová, the insurer’s spokeswoman. Last year, total costs for the campaign of VšZP, which is Slovakia’s biggest health insurance company, reached approximately Sk20 million (€663,900).

The private insurer Dôvera has published neither last year’s expenses nor its costs for this year. PR manager Zuzana Horníková said that current communication expenditures are considerably lower. The state run Spoločná Zdravotná Poisťovňa (SZP) plans to spend Sk6.019 million (€199,800) on its campaign. The sum spent by insurer Apollo this year is also said to be lower than last year, though it refused to specify the amount. Union Zdravotná Poisťovňa explained that lower advertising expenditures are caused by a restriction in the cap for operating costs including advertising activities. Union also declined to specify how much it will spend.

According to the Health Policy Institute (HPI), health insurance companies spent almost Sk430 million (€14.27 million) on their campaigns, according to 2007 data. HPI also predicts that around the same number of people will switch to another health insurance company as last year: about five percent of policyholders.

Up to the end of September, policyholders can decide to switch to another health insurance company as of January next year.


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