An Ant Financial healthcare platform is using blockchain technology to expedite handling of claims during the outbreak of the novel coronavirus in China.
Ant Financial’s Xiang Hu Bao (相互保) has just announced the inclusion of the coronavirus as a critical illness that qualifies for a one-time payment of 100,000 yuan (approx. USD$14,320).
Ant Financial will use its own capital for the payouts, which are separate from the maximum payouts of 300,000 yuan that Xiang Hu Bao provides for a range of 100 critical illnesses.
Xiang Hu Bao is a blockchain-driven collective claims-sharing platform that can be accessed via Ant Financial’s Alipay platform.
The platform offers basic health plans to around 104 million participants around China, with an especial focus on residents in rural areas and smaller urban centres.
Ant Financial touted the ability of blockchain technology to facilitate the claims process.
“Xiang Hu Bao has been able to process claims and make payouts to participants quicker, due to the decentralised, trust-free nature of blockchain technology,” said an Ant Financial spokesman in Beijing to the South China Morning Post.
“Claim applicants can submit their supporting documents as evidence while investigation firms can get immediate access to them on the blockchain. All parties involved can see the entire process.”