Private Health Insurance
Receive the best medical treatment when you need it most...
What is private medical insurance?
Private healthcare insurance is designed to cover the cost of curable (acute) medical conditions in private hospitals or private wards of NHS hospitals.
All policies cover the full cost of conditions that require an overnight stay in hospital (inpatient treatment) or require a period of time in a hospital bed (day-patient treatment).
For example, supposing an individual needed a heart by-pass, their medical insurance would cover the tests and consultations needed in the run-up to the operation and the operation itself.
More comprehensive plans also provide a higher level of cover for treatments, consultations, scans and tests for conditions that do not require a hospital bed.
Additional benefits include cover for psychiatric treatment, physiotherapy and dental surgery whilst other common extras include home nursing, private ambulance and overseas emergency medical cover.
Key policy options
In addition to full cover for inpatient and day-patient healthcare, mid-range and comprehensive plans also provide an extended level of cover for outpatient consultations, tests, scans, physiotherapy and psychiatric treatments.
An “outpatient” is someone who does not need to occupy a hospital bed for their treatment. Comprehensive plans will usually cover most outpatient treatments in full.
Dental & Optical Benefit
Although most policies cover dental/oral surgery some policies also provide an option to include a level of routine dental and optical treatment.
Including this option means that the insurer would provide a specified amount of benefit each policy year to contribute to routine dental or optical treatment (in a similar way to a health cash plan). It should be noted that a separate excess usually applies.
Options to lower your premiums
Implement an excess
In order to reduce premiums to obtain affordable health cover it is possible to implement an excess on your policy. Excesses range from £100 to £5,000. For example, an excess of £250 could reduce monthly premiums by approximately 10%.
Implementing an excess means that you would pay that excess amount once per policy year should you need to make a claim.
Six week wait option
If you are on a tight budget or are happy to use the NHS but worry about long waiting lists then a six week wait option may be right for you. With this option you agree to use the NHS for your treatment provided that the wait is less than six weeks.
If the wait is longer than six weeks then you will go private straight away. Including this option could reduce your monthly premiums by about 20%.
Choosing a hospital list
Depending on your choice of private health plan and hospital list you could access over 400 private hospitals across the United Kingdom, including the very best specialist hospitals.
Medical insurers use private hospitals provided by companies such as Bupa, Spire Healthcare, BMI healthcare, HSA Healthcare and Nuffield Health. Opting for a local (or reduced) hospital list could lower monthly premiums by over 25%.
Local hospital list: Local private hospitals which you can choose from when deciding where to receive treatment.
National hospital list: Extends coverage to a choice of hospitals across the country, including specialist hospitals.
London hospital list: Increased selection of London hospitals in addition to those contained on the national hospital list.
Premier hospital list: Receive medical treatment from any private hospital in the UK, including top London hospitals.
Are there any standard exclusions?
Your first port of call when seeking medical advice will still always be your GP and any emergency would still be dealt with at accident and emergency (A&E).
With all private health cover any recent medical treatment or symptoms you have suffered prior to taking out the policy are likely to be excluded from the plan.
How is the medical insurance underwritten?
When it comes to underwriting there are generally two options, moratorium or full medical underwriting (FMU).
With moratorium underwriting there is no need to disclose your medical history, lifestyle information or undertake a medical screening. With this option the policy would automatically exclude conditions you have suffered in the previous five years.
Existing conditions may be included after two years of holding the policy if you have not had to seek additional treatment or consultations. Moratorium underwriting is an option if you are below the age of 65 and have not suffered from heart disease, stroke, cancer or mental illness.
With full medical underwriting (FMU) you would disclose your medical history at the point of application and may be required to undergo a health screening. If you decide to take this option the insurer may place exclusions on the policy for conditions you have suffered in the past.
Why use a private health insurance broker?
Being independent private medical insurance brokers, we are not tied to any insurers and work on your behalf to find you the most appropriate and competitively priced policy.
We have access to over 30 individual and family polices from 10 of the UK’s leading insurers, including Aviva, AXA PPP Healthcare, PruHealth, Bupa and Simply Health.
Being expert PMI brokers we can talk you through your options to ensure you gain the cover you want, without any unexpected limitations.
If you have a pre-existing medical condition we are also able to speak to the underwriters at each insurer to try and gain you the most favourable terms available in the market.
Need further information?
Our aim is simple, couple expert impartial advice with a first class service. We are wholly independent and compare all the leading UK insurers.
We use our buying power to find you the most competitive rates. You are not a number in a queue getting pushed from pillar to post, speak to one of our experts with a direct phone line.
Give us a call on 0208 432 7333 or get an instant online health insurance quote here
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