Aetna, a US-based diversified health care benefits company, has introduced expedited claims payment and funeral planning services that will provide its insurance customers access to advisors 24 by 7, extensive funeral planning tools and other services.

Aetna said it will now offer expedited claims payment if beneficiaries need an immediate death benefit to pay for funeral costs. It will also offer the Aetna Life Essentials program with all life insurance plans to give members and beneficiaries access to financial advice and legal services.

Aetna Life Essentials offers discounts on fitness center memberships, fitness equipment, hearing and vision services as well as personalized counseling services from a licensed social worker for employees and beneficiaries who are suffering from disabilities or dealing with a serious medical condition.

Scott Beeman, head of Aetna Life Insurance, said: “Our customers are looking to us to provide value-added services aimed at protecting and rewarding talented employees.

”Our offerings provide information and access to resources on a variety of issues including funeral costs, financial advice, estate planning and legal services. These services can truly make a difference for consumers at a time when they need it most.”