Cover for freelance instructors receives lukewarm response

Despite previous interest from practitioners in the plan, only a few individuals have bought it

Cover for freelance instructors receives lukewarm response

Insurance News

By Gabriel Olano

Despite an earlier clamour for an insurance policy catering to the needs of freelance coaches, uptake of the product after it came out has been slow.

According to Ang Hin Kee, assistant director-general of the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC), since the National Instructors and Coaches Association (NICA) spearheaded the creation and launch of the insurance product, only around 50 to 60 individuals have purchased the policy, Today reported.

NICA is an NTUC-affiliated organisation that represents freelance coaches for sports, music, fitness, dance, and wellness.

The insurance policy, which is provided by NTUC Income and local start-up GigaCover, covers prolonged medical leave for coaches and instructors, by paying out a daily income. It was created after practitioners indicated that their line of work placed them at higher risk of physical injuries or illnesses.

Premiums cost from SG$102 to SG$788, depending on the claimant’s age and the insurance provider. NICA’s around 200 members are entitled to a premium discount for their first year.

Several freelance coaches interviewed by Today gave various reasons why they did not purchase the cover.

Band director and NICA member Shaun Leoi, 28, said that while the product was a “good initiative,” he doesn’t feel the need to buy it because he is still young and rarely feels ill. He would also want to “iron out” his finances before buying such insurance.

Meanwhile, a 31-year-old basketball coach surnamed Ong said that he had no idea that the product existed. When informed about the plan’s details, he said that the premiums were “reasonable” and that he was willing to try it. However, he considers the claims process the most important factor in deciding to buy an insurance product.

“If (NICA) had done a bit of marketing to push it out to the coaches to get them covered, then the response could be good,” he added.

Benedict Chia, a freelance strength-and-conditioning coach, said that while he was aware of the plan, he didn’t need it.

“I already have my own private medical insurance plans which are sufficient,” said 28-year-old Chia. “They already cover me for work-related accidents, and my hospitalisation plan covers me for any long-term injuries that I may sustain.”

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