Your Health Insurance Options
Our team of experts are often asked which is the best Health Insurance. However, the answer isn’t simple. There are various types of Private Medical Insurance, each with their own policy options that benefit different people with different needs. The important thing is to find the most suitable policy for you based on your needs and budget.
What is Inpatient Care?
Inpatient or day-patient care – where a hospital bed is required, either for the night or for part of a day, respectively – is a core part of all Health Insurance cover.
This will cover you for surgical procedures and all related costs.
What is Outpatient Cover?
As well as core inpatient cover, you can also add outpatient cover to your Medical Insurance policy.
Adding outpatient cover allows for diagnostic tests in the lead up to a potential operation to be done privately, rather than waiting for the NHS.
With inpatient-only cover, you’ll have to wait for the NHS to diagnose your condition before using your Private Medical Insurance to resolve the issue.
Adding outpatient treatment means you get the extra layer of cover that comes with having your diagnostic tests and potentially any therapies, such as physiotherapy, covered privately.
Which Health Insurance Underwriting?
The type of underwriting you have on your Private Medical Insurance policy is important as it may have an impact on what you can claim for, especially when it comes to pre-existing conditions.
For individuals, there are two main types of medical underwriting.
Moratorium underwriting excludes most pre-existing conditions you’ve suffered over a set period, usually the last 5 years.
If you have suffered from a medical condition in the past 5 years, you’ll need to satisfy a set period on the policy – typically 2 years – without having any treatment, advice or medication for that condition before the insurer will consider covering it.
Full medical underwriting (FMU)
With full medical underwriting, you disclose your entire medical history upfront and the insurer places outright exclusions on most pre-existing conditions.
They’ll usually rule out covering any pre-existing conditions, although there may be leeway to negotiate cover for more minor illnesses at your insurer’s discretion.
Other Health Insurance Options
As well as deciding whether you need to add outpatient cover to your Private Medical Insurance, you’ll also have a number of other options to consider. For instance, would you want to add:
- Therapies cover
Sometimes not covered as a standard part of outpatient treatment, this gives you access to therapies such as physiotherapy, osteopathy and acupuncture
- Routine dental care
While most policies cover emergency dentistry, say if you lost a tooth, as well as if you require oral surgery, routine dental care (e.g. fillings, checkups etc.) can be added on as an optional extra
- Routine optical
Again this can be added as an optional extra, giving you cover for glasses and sight tests as well as things covered as standard, such as surgery for cataracts
- Psychiatric cover
As mental health conditions can be debilitating and very tricky to treat, psychiatric cover is often included as an ‘add-on’ option to medical insurance plans for an additional cost.