New York Life has signed a new agreement with Epic, a health records system, to use electronic health records to speed up its underwriting process and capabilities.

Under the arrangement, the insurance company will use Epic’s Chart Gateway to connect with healthcare companies to retrieve electronic health records for life insurance applicants.

Medical records, so far, were shared with life insurers as scanned or faxed copies.

The technology is expected to reduce the life insurance application process time and improve customers’ experience. It is also expected help in reducing administrative burden on healthcare providers.

New York Life senior vice president and head of retail life Alex Cook said: “The length of time it takes to complete the life insurance application process can deter people from getting the life insurance they need to protect their loved ones.

“Transitioning to a digital model for health record processing will significantly reduce application processing time, easing the process for new clients and delivering a better experience for our customers.”

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Cook further said: “This is another step forward in New York Life’s strategy to make life insurance more accessible and easier to understand and purchase. Every investment we make to improve the process for purchasing life insurance will help streamline consumers’ ability to obtain the coverage they need.”

Established in 1845, New York Life Insurance Company is one of the largest mutual life insurance firms in the US. It family of companies provides life insurance, retirement income, investments and long-term care insurance.