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How the pandemic and lockdown affected 1Life’s policyholders

8 June 2021
5 minute read

In April we asked 1Life policyholders about their lockdown and pandemic experiences in the 1Life Policyholder Survey. We had a great response! Thank you so much to all our policyholders who responded. We’ve put together some of the survey highlights below with our tips on how to deal with some of your concerns.

Key survey findings!
59% of our policyholders did not keep up with their exercise programmes
All that Zooming, staying inside, baking and cooking, not to mention the pineapple brew, meant many policyholders, and indeed many South Africans, didn’t keep up with their exercise programmes when lockdown started – over 400 days ago!

Exercise improves your physical and emotional health and it’s a great way to keep warm in the winter chill. And it may just reverse the shrinking clothes trend! If you’re a gym bunny, gyms are open and following strict Covid-19 safety protocols, if not, we found 12 ways to get fitter without going to gym!

Come on – off the couch and away from the screen! Your body and your brain will thank you.

73% of 1Life policyholders have not kept up with cancer screenings.
Well, we were told to keep contact and gatherings to a minimum to reduce the risk of transmission, and not overuse the healthcare system. So, it wasn’t a real surprise to learn that many of our policyholders had not kept up with their cancer screenings since lockdown started. But the number is high.

According to CANSA, the Cancer Association of South Africa, early detection is key to enabling effective treatment and a better chance of recovering from cancer. Screening is one of the best ways to detect cancer, so it really is important that you chat to your doctor or clinic about what screenings you should have when. So go on, make a doctor’s appointment and stick to it. If you are worried about the costs of screening, check out the screening services CANSA offers.

Remember: Doctors, clinics and specialists have protocols in place to make visiting them as safe as possible, and often allow you to wait outside or in your car until they are ready for you, keeping physical contact to a minimum.

74% of our policyholders are not actively saving for emergencies
So many people suffered financially in lockdown and with the high rate of unemployment, our policyholders are finding it difficult to save for emergencies.  

The good news is that saving even the smallest amount can make a difference. Savings are a lifesaver when you have an unexpected expense and can prevent you from getting into debt. Why not take a few moments to review your finances and see if you can build emergency savings into your budget?

Start small with R100 a month, which is just R25 a week.  

Save... Earn interest of... And by June 2022 you’ll have...
R100 a month from June 2021 8% R1 251
Save... Earn interest of... And by December 2022 you’ll have...
R100 a month from June 2021 8% R1 914

It all adds up!

72% of you said there is not enough awareness around mental health issues in the country
We agree. Many South Africans are depressed and anxious but are unable to talk to friends and family about their problems and don’t know where to go to get help.  

Thankfully, there are experts who can help. SADAG, the South African Depression and Anxiety Group, has some great resources and tips on their website, as well as contact details if you have a mental health issue you need to chat about. You can also contact your GP or clinic for advice. And remember these wise words from the World Health Organisation: Be kind to your mind, reach out for help if you need it.

Key finding: 66% of our policyholders are struggling to pay their premiums.
In the first wave of infection alone, 3 million people lost their jobs. Although some of those jobs were recovered, there were more job losses in the second wave in December 2020/January 2021. So it’s not surprising to learn that many of us are constantly juggling our budgets, and delaying or skipping payments.

We saw from your responses, however, that you really want to keep up with your insurance. 83% of our policyholders said their policies with 1Life gave them peace of mind. So, what are your options if you are struggling to pay your premiums?

Let 1Life help you manage your money well

It was evident from your comments that you value your family’s financial well-being, including taking care of important matters such as drawing up a will. We can help.

Truth About Money is a 1Life initiative that empowers you to make smart financial choices. Make use of the services offered, read the articles and tips on Truth About Money website and you will become a better money manager!

As a 1Life policyholder you have access to these services from Truth About Money:

  • Debt management services including debt counselling and consolidation
  • Free legal assistance benefit, including 24-hour legal advice and a will drafting service for you and your spouse
  • A free online financial education course that will teach you how to manage your money and make good investment decisions

These services rated highly in the survey. 89% of our policyholders who used these services rated the financial education course 7/10 or higher, and 88% rated the wills and estate benefit 7/10 or higher!

Interested? Visit Truth About Money today.

Thank you
Thank you for sharing – you helped us learn more about you, and how the last 400+ days have changed your lives. We hope that together we can find solutions to our challenges as we trim our budgets, exercise more, go for our check-ups and address our mental health concerns. And, of course most important of all, let us focus on the really important things in life – family and keeping them well, cared for and safe.

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