Tuesday, April 18, 2023

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How technology is transforming the (sports personal accident) game!

For many Australians, sport is simply part of our DNA, with more than 80% of Australians participating in weekly sports or physical activity, and rising (Australian Sports Commission, 2021). Physical activity is not without its risks though and sports that offer member benefits such as personal accident insurance cover are an appealing reason to join an organised sport. This article looks at some of the major injuries in sport and how technology advancements are helping to address this issue.

Recent data released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare revealed that between 2019 and 2020, more than 50,000 people were hospitalised due to sports injuries (both organised and unorganised sports). As shown in the graph below, most of these hospitalisations were due to cycling accidents (15%) followed by wheeled motor sports and roller sports (both 7%).

Source: AIHW, 2022.

As the use of technology and data analytics in sport becomes increasingly mainstream, we’re witnessing a shift in the insurance industry towards more individualised and data-driven approach to personal injury cover. Here are some key sports insurance trends that are emerging in the market and how they’re impacting risk management and injury prevention.

1. Enhanced data-led decision making

Insurance companies are using data analytics tools to identify patterns and trends in claims data, which helps to promote transparency and accuracy. This approach allows insurers to identify areas of risk or patterns of injuries, enabling them to adjust their policies and pricing accordingly. Ultimately, this leads to improved customer experiences, as policyholders are more likely to receive the coverage they need.


2. Expansion of GPS and wearable tech

The use of GPS technology and wearable technology in sports has several benefits for athletes and sports teams, particularly when it comes to monitoring performance and injury prevention. Heavy training loads can lead to injuries, which can be costly and have a significant impact on an athlete's health and career.  Using these devices, sports teams and organisations can monitor athletes' training loads and detect the early signs of overuse or fatigue, which can help prevent injuries.


3. Breaking barriers with telehealth

Telehealth or the use of technology to provide healthcare services remotely, is becoming increasingly popular, and this is true for personal injury insurance.  By providing access to high-quality care remotely, telemedicine can improve patient outcomes, reduce costs, and increase access to care for athletes of all ages and abilities.  As telemedicine continues to evolve and become more widely adopted, it is likely that we will see even more significant benefits for sports clubs and members as athletes will be to return from injury quickly.


As technology and the world of sports continue to converge, it is important to be aware of the insurance options and to consult with an insurance broker if you have any questions or concerns. Having the right insurance coverage in place gives you the confidence to focus on what you do best.


Chris Papakostas


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Honan Insurance Group Pty Ltd is now fully owned by Marsh Pty Ltd. To find out more, speak to your broker or read the announcement