Pet insurance market becomes more competitive

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The latest trends in the Korean pet insurance industry are long-term insurance plans and sales in offline channels, says Shim Jun-won, CEO of Petfins, a local pet insurer.

“This means that the market competition has started in earnest,” reported JoongAng Daily quoting Mr Shim. 

  

Despite a fast-growing market, Korea still has a long way to go. The proportion of pets that are insured are still less than 1% of the total number. 

  

Experts argue that there are some ongoing issues that should be discussed for the pet insurance market to grow further. The expensive insurance premium is cited as the biggest problem. 

  

Some 22.3% of pet owners cite being “burdened because of costs,” as the biggest reason why they are hesitant to get insurance, according to a survey by the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs on some 4,100 pet owners. Ageing pets is a major reason for these costs. 

Limited coverage and lack of explanation are other big issues. 

  

Standardisation 

Some say it is essential to set up a standard system for the medical treatment of pets. Assigning codes for diseases, like how health insurance works for humans, is considered a way to stabilise expenses. 

  

For instance, patella luxation is a common issue for both dogs or cats. However, veterinarians have their own ways of defining the kneecap, thus they charge widely different rates.   

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