Bengaluru: Plum, a health insurance platform, has unveiled its whitepaper, ‘What Goes into Building a Company That Cares’ which reveals the gaps in healthcare and insurance access faced by underrepresented groups in the workplace and urges corporations to recognise the significance of employee health insurance, not only as a comprehensive benefit but also a genuinely inclusive one at that.
While the conversation around diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) has gained considerable traction over the recent years, the needle is yet to move to ensure access to quality healthcare and insurance coverage for underrepresented groups: including members of the LGBTQAI+ community, people with disabilities and women. Plum’s whitepaper on inclusion through insurance addresses these disparities and also proposes corrective measures to make benefits at workplaces truly inclusive.
- 60 per cent of Plum’s customers have opted for new-age insurance coverage, demonstrating a growing demand for comprehensive healthcare.
- However, while progressive and comprehensive, less than 1 per cent of these covers are inclusive. For example, there is much to be done to cover people with disabilities (For example Down’s Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy or Autism) or even add LGBTQAI+ specific treatments (like gender reassignment surgery and mental health support) to these comprehensive policies.
- Additionally, less than 25 per cent of Plum’s customers have comprehensive insurance that caters to women’s unique healthcare and lifestyle needs, resulting in higher out-of-pocket expenses for an overlooked segment of the population.
Abhishek Poddar, Co-founder and CEO, Plum, said, “By acknowledging and addressing the disparities faced by diverse employees, particularly those belonging to underrepresented groups, we have the potential to instigate change in the way companies prioritise the well-being of their workforce.”Plum collaborated closely with top DEI experts and activists like Dr Saundarya Rajesh, Founder-President, Avtar The Power of Diversity, Harish Iyer, an equal rights activist, Akshay CM, DEI & Talent Management Consultant, Priti Shetty, Chief People and Culture Officer, WeWork, etc to develop this whitepaper, solidifying its commitment to driving meaningful change.
In the whitepaper, Iyer emphasises, “Inclusivity is an ongoing journey, not a destination. The absence of DEI initiatives within any organisation can have detrimental effects on both individuals and the company as a whole. Individuals may encounter obstacles, discrimination, and a stressful work environment, while companies may experience high attrition rates and a decline in productivity, ultimately hindering overall growth. Historically underrepresented groups bear the brunt of such toxic work cultures.”
This whitepaper marks the company’s first significant step towards addressing inclusion through insurance, being fully aware that true progress and change require continuous effort and genuine intent.