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Naya Jeevan

About the Project
Project Name: 
Scaling Naya Jeevan, the "Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) for the Marginalized”: Offering Tangible Value via Affordable, Scalable and Quality Healthcare Services to Low Income Families Affiliated with Employer Groups in Pakistan
Type of Facility Project: 
Innovation Grant
País de operaciones: 
Asia and the Pacific
Project Thematic Focus: 
Product design
Type of Risk Carrier: 
mutual or community-based
Type of Distribution Channel: 
Non-governmental organization
Project Description: 

Naya Jeevan will distribute its health microinsurance program through employer groups, promoting employer premium contributions as effective corporate social responsibility (CSR) and a sound employee retention strategy.  The enrollment of contract employees in the small and medium enterprise (SME) sector will be facilitated by field enrollment officers.  Corporate liaison managers will interface primarily with MNCs to encourage enrolment of contract employees and the domestic staff of higher income employees.  The project will assess whether MNCs and other employer groups are willing to offer partial matching contributions in order to provide healthcare to contract employees and to incentivize higher income employees to insure their domestic staff. 

All participants benefit not only from the health insurance protection, but also from the value-added services of a 24/7 medical hotline, an annual health exam, a rescue fund for uninsurable conditions and a variety of community health education activities.  Naya Jeevan’s menu of value added services will be adapted during the life of the project to respond to the needs of participants.


The project will target the urban, working poor employed in both the formal and informal sectors, specifically, low-income contract workers earning $2 - $6/day in a variety of employer groups and domestic workers of higher income employees of multinational corporations (MNCs).

Lessons from the Project
Learning Agenda: 
  • To what extent and how effectively will multinational corporations, academic institutions, SMEs and NGOs serve as efficient distribution channels for the Naya Jeevan health plan? How scalable and replicable is this model across these various channels?
  • To what extent will provision of tangible, value-added services to low-income beneficiaries accelerate enrolment & retention while improving socioeconomic and health outcomes?
Emerging Lessons: 
  • Naya Jeevan’s unique approach to combine bulk purchasing discounts with sponsorship for low-income persons’ health insurance elegantly avoids the usual effort to downscale the scope of health insurance until the cost meets the ability to pay of the target beneficiaries.
  • The use of existing group health plans and hospital networks from commercial insurers aggravates the challenge most providers of health microinsurance face, namely that health care facilities accustomed to treat more affluent people may discriminate against the poor.
  • For a party involved in microinsurance but not actually underwriting insurance itself – such as Naya Jeevan -, overly-generous claims management that increases claims ratios risks  alienating the insurance underwriter, and vice versa with overly-stringent claims management.
  • Growing a pioneering service company from scratch requires continuous evolution of processes.
  • The unique Naya Jeevan approach to sponsored health microinsurance circumvents two of the most frequent obstacles to insuring marginalized populations: in-ability to pay and insurance mis-understanding. But it highlights that there are other obstacles, related to mentality and behavior change. 
  • One also has to be very cognizant of, and receptive to, cultural barriers to efficiency.
  • Corporate supply and retail chains have turned out to appear more promising, and in hindsight Naya Jeevan has found that it would have been helpful had it anticipated and preempted the particular concerns and questions that the supply chains and distributors have, especially in order to expedite their buy-in time. 
  • Slow growth is the single biggest challenge to Naya Jeevan if revenues don't grow fast enough to meaningfully contribute towards the relatively high expenses required by this service-intensive model.
  • The most successful example of early SME adopters of Naya Jeevan’s services is the high-end food and beverage industrial segment.

Date created: February 2012

About the Organization
Tipo de vínculo con el Fondo: 
Innovation grantee
Country of Head Office: 
United States
Region : 
North America
Type of institution : 
Non government organization
Participation in Microinsurance: 
Risk carrier
Organizational Overview: 

Naya Jeevan, meaning “new life”, is a California-based not-for-profit organization with current operations focused on urban Pakistan. Naya Jeevan’s mission is to provide social protection to low-income families in an efficient and inclusive manner through a unique health microinsurance model. The model creates scalable partnerships with a variety of organized groups such as corporations, SMEs & academic institution to facilitate the enrollment of low-income employees and domestic staff of higher income employees into the Naya Jeevan health plan. 

More about the Organization