Year XVII / 2012 Nº62PDF


A study of the socioeconomic aspects of history, always exciting, provides the milestones marking the development of the medical concept of illness and its relation to human mortality and insurance. Through the authorised point of view of Dr. Ana Villanueva, Medical Director of Life, Health and Personal Accident business at MAPFRE RE, Trébol recalls the successes, advances and dramas that have been changing human life expectancy and the improvements in medical diagnostics methods. Personal lines insurance has also followed scientific and demographic developments, which is why, in the same historical vein, this issue also includes a report on the researchers who designed the risk analysis method that continues to improve today as technology progresses.

The so-called “Canterbury series of earthquakes” in New Zealand started on 4 September 2010 and was followed by three more earthquakes which devastated the areas most vulnerable to the phenomenon of soil liquefaction or loss of soil consistency in the city of Christchurch, on the archipelago’s South Island. A select local team of scientists and researchers describes and interprets for Trébol the most serious social, economic and insurance effects which led to a rethink of the parameters of earthquake engineering codes, land-use planning and the rules of local insurance and international reinsurance.

Jorge Martínez Salvadores, a Valencian from Alzira, was given the nickname “Aspar” because of his grandfather’s profession of espardanyer (pronounced “aspardanyer”), the Catalan word for “espadrille maker” and a metaphor for a life dedicated to working and travelling the roads, albeit competing worldwide on a motorcycle. Now he coaches a team of young riders – “one big family”, as he puts it. A strong mental outlook and good people backed by ever more safety, both mechanical and at the circuits, is a recipe for success that guarantees the support of sponsors and allows team members to ride more and better.

Reducing the number of road accident fatalities is dependent on many factors. During the eight years that Spain’s National Road Safety Observatory was in operation, Anna Ferrer used all the pedagogical skills from her university education in a tight work schedule based on the analysis of information, planning and the involvement of all the responsible players. Result: the annual number of fatalities has fallen from 5,000 to 2,000. Although she says that there is still a lot to be done, our children are already driving and are less afraid of doing so.

“La femme hydropique”, engraving by Godard d’Alençon after an image by Gerard Dow, published in Le Magasin Pittoresque, Paris, 1842.