Lorenzo Fertitta and Dana White at UFC 100
Zuffa, LLC announced today that nearly 350 UFC and Strikeforce fighters will soon be eligible for customized accident insurance coverage.
This is not health insurance, such as what you might be eligible for through an employer, where doctor’s visits, prescriptions, and the like are covered. This insurance will cover accidental injuries suffered by athletes outside of competition, such as while training, in a car accident, and the like.
The coverage will be underwritten by Houston Casualty Insurance Company and complement existing event coverage the company already provides its athletes.
To date, Zuffa event-related insurance has always met or exceeded Athletic Commission requirements and has covered all injuries sustained during competition. After exploring the purchase of “training insurance” for its athletes for several years – much of which was met with difficulty in finding an insurance company willing to insure mixed martial artists – Zuffa officials were able to secure a comprehensive plan through A+ rated Houston Casualty.
The new policy adds 24-hour worldwide medical life insurance and dental coverage, as well as emergency medical evacuation. Zuffa will pay 100 percent of the premiums for its athletes and have an employee dedicated to handling and filing all claims.
“Our athletes are some of the very best in the world and we’ve committed significant financial resources to provide them with insurance that complements the gold standard we have set for event-related coverage,” UFC Chairman and CEO Lorenzo Fertitta said. “We’re pleased to provide coverage that enables our athletes to seek and receive treatment for injuries sustained while preparing for bouts.”
“As this sport continues to grow, we have been working hard to secure additional insurance coverage so that our athletes can perform at the highest levels,” UFC president Dana White said. “We’re proud to give our athletes access to this type of insurance.”
The insurance goes into effect on June 1, according to a report by MMAWeekly.com content partner Yahoo! Sports.
The move to provide accident insurance is a first in combat sports, at least at this magnitude, covering nearly 350 athletes.