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Insight

Published

06 September 2021

The year 2020 will remain indelibly linked with the COVID-19 pandemic in both our collective memory and the history books too.

Yet, as the Wall Street Journal reported on the 10th June this year, there have been far more worldwide pandemic-related deaths in the first half of 2021 than there were in the entirety of 2020. 

And this is also true here in the UK.  Despite the evident success of the United Kingdom’s vaccination programme, the nation’s COVID-19 death toll continues to rise. 

COVID claims figures

And Group Life Assurance (GLA) claims figures published by Group Risk Development (GRiD) last week also reflect that awful reality. 

GRiD’s research highlights that UK company-sponsored Group Life Assurance (GLA) schemes paid-out some £93m in COVID-19 related claims during the whole of 2020.  Tragically that figure for just the first six months of this calendar year stood at more than £125m.

The risk to employees?

The above is a reminder that the mortality and health risks of COVID-19 continue to be very real to people of all ages, including those of working-age.  Indeed GRiD’s research found that COVID-19 related death claims accounted for almost 1 in 5 (18%) of all GLA claims made this year.

Of course a monetary payment is never going to replace the loss of a loved one, but it can go a very long way towards easing the immediate financial pressures associated with any death. 

The reality is that the pandemic has presented a stark reminder as to why employers should always seek to provide Group Life Assurance to financially protect their employees. Hopefully this lesson will live on through the remainder of these difficult times and well beyond.

For more information on any of the above topics, please speak to your usual Howden Consultant in the first instance, or visit our website for other contact options.  For the latest details on COVID-19 & Employee Benefits provision please visit Howden’s coronavirus hub.

Published 06/09/21

Steve Herbert

Steve Herbert

Steve is Head of Benefits Strategy, Howden Employee Benefits & Wellbeing, and is an award-winning thought leader on Pensions, Employee Benefits, and Human Resources issues. He is occasionally accused of making Employee Benefits interesting.

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