A survey conducted by the Australian insurance company AMP Society claims people in Hong Kong are under-insured. Only 15 per cent of the population had bought medical coverage, the firm's general marketing manager, Rodney Chan Shu-kai, said. The survey found public hospital patients were even less likely to be covered: more than 90 per cent had no medical plan. The widespread under-insurance resulted from a general lack of insurance knowledge among the public, said Mr Chan. He added even those with health insurance might not realise the average medical plan covered only hospital expenses and did not include follow-up medical care, hiring a domestic helper or replacing lost income. For this extra cash, a person would need a cash rider on their hospitalisation coverage and personal-accident benefit. Mr Chan said only about 20 per cent of Hong Kong people had personal-accident plans. Life insurance needs were also poorly met, with only about 40 per cent of the territory's population having any cover. He said most who did have a policy were unlikely to be adequately covered. A comparison of local spending on life insurance with that in other developed economies showed Hong Kong residents spent substantially less. Those with life insurance spent an average of $8,160 per year, or 2.8 per cent of annual income, much less than the 5 per cent spent elsewhere in the world. Mr Chan suggested $5 million in life coverage would be appropriate for a flat-owning Hong Kong household consisting of a 30-year-old working husband, a housewife and two children. In the event of the husband's death, this level of coverage would allow the wife to pay off the mortgage on the family's $2 million apartment and still have $3 million left for living expenses. A whole-life policy for the full amount of the coverage would be very expensive, carrying an annual premium of about $50,000, Mr Chan said. But the bill could be lessened considerably by attaching a term-life rider to the whole-life policy. Using this approach, a $500,000 whole-life policy would cost $5,000 a year, and its $4.5 million term-life rider would cost about $9,000 per year, bringing the total annual premium for essentially the same coverage to $14,000.