Insurer pays for Chinese cancer treatment in Japan

Nippon Life Insurance has begun selling health insurance that covers Chinese policyholders for cancer treatment in Japan.

Japanese insurance group Nippon Life Insurance has begun selling health insurance that lets Chinese policyholders get cancer treatment in Japan as part of their cover.

As the number of Chinese cancer patients grows, more are seeking high-quality treatment in Japan. The insurer hopes to tap into rising demand for medical tourism among affluent Chinese consumers.

Insurance policy sales will be handled by Nissay-Greatwall Life Insurance- a joint venture between Nippon Life and the Chinese government. Nippon Life holds a 30% stake. In addition to cancer treatment, other costs such as travel and lodging will be covered by the insurance.

Emergency Assistance Japan, a medical intermediary company, will obtain medical treatment visas and select hospitals that fit patients’ wishes and needs out of a network of 1,000 partner institutions in Japan.

Nippon Life will pay the hospital fees, alleviating any concerns the medical facilities may have regarding payment.

Nippon Life aims to sign up 20,000 policyholders in the first fiscal year, earning $7.25 million in premium income. The company hopes to write about 100,000 policies in the next three years.

Cancer is the leading cause of death in China. Just 30% of patients live five years after diagnosis. In Japan, the survival rate is 70%.