Banyan Global operates seamlessly within four practice areas:
In Georgia, Banyan Global is strengthening private health insurance and building the capacity of private health-service providers by improving their access to finance and strengthening their management and administration. These efforts support the government of Georgia as it undergoes a significant health reform. Since 1995 the government has overhauled its health system, privatizing both financing and service provision to a major extent. As a result of these reforms, the government fully or partially subsidizes private health insurance for approximately 1 million Georgians.
While the pace of reform has progressed rapidly in Georgia, the capacity of local institutions to handle these changes has varied. Working through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID)-funded Health System Strengthening Project as a subcontractor to Abt Associates, Banyan Global is building the capacity of local organizations to adapt to these changes.
In 2011, Banyan Global designed and implemented a new technical training in Georgia, Underwriting and Product Development to Manage Health Insurance Risk. This course, the first of its type offered in the country, provided participants with insight into issues related to medical underwriting. Twenty-three participants from 11 health insurers completed the 20-hour course. Banyan Global offered participants advice and instruction on customizing the underwriting risk-management process and its relevance to their daily operations.
Ilia University, a large higher educational institution in Georgia, recently announced the launch of two master's programs: master of insurance business and master of health care and pharmacy management. These programs incorporate more than 40 academic hours of course content Banyan Global developed through the USAID-funded Health System Strengthening Project. These topics include underwriting and claims-management content for health insurance and hospital financing.
Tengiz Verulava, dean of business studies at Ilia University, said, "It is very important for us that innovative programs like this are introduced in Georgia…this type of information is severely lacking in our country." Ilia University used Banyan Global's course content to develop its own master's degree courses entitled, The Use of Underwriting and Product Development for Health Insurance Risk Management and Claims Management.
The creation of the master's program will bolster the development of Georgia's insurance industry and strengthen its professionalism. Banyan Global continues to work with Dr. Verulava and the Georgia Insurance Association as they expand the delivery of health insurance underwriting to Georgian students and professionals.