What is Health Insurance Underwriting?

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What is Medical Underwriting for Health Insurance?

Underwriting is the process used by insurers to decide on the level of cover you will get from your policy.

Private Health Insurance underwriting focuses mainly on your policy’s exclusions, which are the conditions that your Medical Insurance provider will not cover you for.

There are different types of Medical Underwriting that you may be able to choose from which will affect how your insurer makes these decisions.

What are the Different Types of Underwriting?

There are three main types of medical underwriting that you’ll come across in Health Insurance terms if you’re buying a policy personally:

  • Full Medical Underwriting
  • Moratorium Underwriting
  • Continuing Personal Medical Exclusions.

If you’re buying PMI for a large group of employees, there’s a fourth definition you may wish to know about: Medical History Disregarded.

Each of these different underwriting types determines:

  • If your insurer requires your medical history
  • At what point will they review your medical history
  • How they decide which conditions to exclude
  • How long they decide to exclude them for.

What is Full Medical Underwriting?

Full Medical Underwriting means that your insurer will ask for your medical history during the application process.

They will then automatically exclude any serious past and present pre-existing medical conditions that you have experienced.

These exclusions will be permanent once you have agreed to your policy and will last until your cover ends.

If you have a history of poor health, you may find a considerable number of exclusions added to your Health Insurance policy with Full Medical Underwriting.

It is up to your insurer to decide which of your past conditions they will and won’t cover.

While underwriters can sometimes be lenient and allow you to negotiate cover for minor conditions, it goes without saying that most providers will exclude any serious medical conditions.

Moratorium Underwriting Definition

Moratorium Underwriting means that your insurer will automatically exclude any medical conditions that you have suffered from in the 5 years prior to taking out your policy.

However, excluded conditions can be covered by your policy again later on. This depends on if you seek help for the condition while on the policy and whether your policy uses Fixed Moratorium or Rolling Moratorium underwriting.

One benefit of Moratorium underwriting is that your exclusions may not be permanent.

Rolling Moratorium Underwriting

If you serve 2 years on your Health Insurance policy without getting any advice, medication or treatment for an excluded condition, then the condition may be added back onto your cover at your insurer’s discretion.

Fixed Moratorium Underwriting

After 2 years on your Health Insurance policy, your insurance provider will consider whether they will cover your initially excluded conditions, regardless of whether you have received treatment for them.

While providers often remove minor conditions from your list of exclusions at their discretion, more serious conditions will still not typically be considered if you’ve been having ongoing treatment.

Continuing Personal Medical Exclusions

Continuing Personal Medical Exclusions (CPME) is the type of underwriting that you would choose if you are switching providers.

It allows you to keep the same exclusions as your old policy when you take out a new one without the need to answer any more medical questions when you apply.

Any conditions you suffered while on your old policy won’t be excluded on your new one.

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Medical History Disregarded

Medical History Disregarded is a type of underwriting that involves an underwriter disregarding your medical history completely.

This means that aside from your provider’s standard exclusions, none of your previous or current medical conditions will be excluded from your health insurance policy.

This type of medical underwriting is the most expensive out of all of them and is only available when purchasing Group Health Insurance policies above a certain size.

Which is the Best Underwriting for Health Insurance?

The best medical underwriting for one person may be different from another depending on your circumstances and your budget.

If you are purchasing an Individual Health Insurance policy, then it is very unlikely that Medical History Disregarded underwriting would be an available option.

This is because Medical History Disregarded underwriting is designed specifically for Group Health Insurance policies.

Meanwhile, Continuing Personal Medical Exclusions is designed specifically for people with an existing PMI policy that would like to switch providers, so if you’re taking out a brand new policy this will not be the underwriting option for you.

That leaves Full Medical Underwriting and Moratorium Underwriting as your options. Which is right for you will depend on your medical history and circumstances.

To find out which underwriting you should choose for your Health Insurance, you can read our full guide Full Medical Underwriting vs Moratorium Underwriting.

Need Expert Medical Insurance Advice

We have a team of expert advisers who are on hand to help you with your queries and ensure you obtain the most appropriate health insurance for your needs.

Why speak to us?

We started Drewberry because we were tired of being treated like a number and not getting the service we all deserve when it comes to things as important as protecting our health and our finances. Below are just a few reasons why it makes sense to talk to us.

  • There is no fee for our service
  • We are independent and impartial
    Drewberry isn’t tied to any insurance company, so we can provide completely impartial advice to make sure you get the most appropriate policy based solely on your needs.
  • We’ve got bargaining power on our side
    This allows us to negotiate better premiums for you than you going direct yourself.
  • You’ll speak to a dedicated expert from start to finish
    You will speak to a named expert with a direct telephone and email. No more automated machines and no more being sent from pillar to post – you’ll have someone to speak to who knows you.
  • Benefit from our 5-star service
    We pride ourselves on providing a 5-star service, as can be seen from our 2579 and growing independent client reviews rating us at 4.91 / 5.
  • Benefit from the protection of regulated advice
    You are protected. Where we provide a regulated advice service we are responsible for the policy we set-up for you. Doing it yourself or going direct to an insurer won’t provide this protection, so you won’t benefit from these securities.
  • Claims support when you need it the most
    You have support should you need to make a claim. The most important thing when it comes to insurance is that claims are paid and quickly. We are here to support you during the claims process and make sure it’s as smooth and stress free as possible.

If it is all getting a little confusing and you want to talk through your options to make sure you find the most suitable cover please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Pop us a call on 02074425880 or email help@drewberry.co.uk.

Tom Conner
Director at Drewberry

Martyn Coates from Drewberry provided an excellent service with prompt handling of any question that we asked him. I would highly recommend Drewberry for anyone wanting Insurance.

Kevin Eaton
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Or call us on 0208 432 7333

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