How can I reduce my private health insurance premiums?

I want to understand the ways in which I can reduce my monthly premiums on my private medical insurance plan, the only one I have thought of is adding an excess to the plan.

Question asked by Samantha Atkins
Compare Top 10 UK
Takes approx. 60 seconds
Level of Cover
Date of Birth

Answered by Andrew Jenkinson

Thanks for your question, you are correct, adding an excess is a common way of reducing your health insurance premiums below are a number of other ways which can help you contain costs.

Level of Outpatient Cover

The vast majority of private medical insurance (PMI) products will provide cover for inpatient treatment in full i.e. where a stay in hospital is required. It is in the level of outpatient treatment that the premiums can differ significantly as claims are more frequent, outpatient treatment includes any scans, tests or specialist consultations where a stay in hospital is not required.

The three options tend to be no outpatient treatment, a level of outpatient treatment capped at a monetary limit i.e. £1,000 per policy year or covering outpatient treatment in full. Naturally the greater the level of outpatient cover provided the higher you monthly premiums.

Additional Benefits

Therapies – Often an additional option which can be selected which covers alternative treatments such as osteopathy and chiropody. Given the nature of these treatments claims can be quite common and including such cover can make up as much as 10% of your total premium.

Psychiatric Cover – An additional option which can often be included in a private medical insurance plan, the cost of treatment can be expensive and drawn out and thus can add another 5-10% to your monthly premiums.

Six Week Wait Option

The six week wait option was introduced into the PMI market to provide a more affordable option to individuals who were priced out of the market. With the six week wait option the policy holder agrees to receive treatment via the NHS should the waiting list for treatment of their condition be less than six weeks.

Should the NHS waiting list be more than six weeks the policy holder is eligible to receive treatment privately immediately. By opting for the six week wait option premiums can reduce by as much as a third.

Hospital List

Most insurers offer a standard hospital list which covers a wide range of hospitals throughout the UK, there are then options to either extend or reduce that hospital list depending on your requirements. Options to reduce the hospital list can often include a local hospital list limiting the hospitals in which treatment can be received or some insurers go as far as offering hospital lists which limit you to private wings of NHS hospitals.

With all of these options it is important to understand the cover provided by each and the cost of that particular benefit before making any decisions on altering cover to reduce your monthly premiums.

For further information please see our page Options to reduce health cover premiums – Low Cost Health Insurance

private health insurance
hospital list
six week wait option
This information does not constitute financial or other professional advice. You should consult your professional adviser or contact us directly on 02084327333 should you require financial advice. It is important to ensure any insurance policy you take out is suitable for your needs.
Compare Top 10 UK Insurers
  Takes approx. 60 seconds
Need help? 
Call us on 

Frequently Asked Private Medical Insurance Questions

I am looking for a comprehensive medical insurance plan and want to know what defines a plan as comprehensive...
I have just been given company Private Medical Insurance through work and received my policy documents...
I’m about to apply for private health insurance but I’m not sure what the difference is between moratorium...
I have had private health insurance in the past through work and I am now considering taking out my own...
Need Help? Live chat now and get an instant answer from our Experts...


Our Latest Reviews
Kevin Paul

Excellent service renewing our medical insurance, professional advice, good rates found and excellent professional after service, highly recommended.

Max Edgar

Nadeem was brilliant. He was very patient and worked very well with me to come up with the best solution possible for my budget. Perfect solution. Thank you very much.

Aidan Smyth

Dealt with me promptly and provided me with the most cost-effective option consistent with my requirements. Very pleased and thank you.

We are rated 4.9/5 based on 1129 independent client reviews.
To read more of our independent client reviews click here →
4.93 / 5 Average
1,222 Reviews
Overall Rating
Really, really helpful! Stopped me from signing up with an unhelpful company, and did basically all of the legwork for me in signing up with the right one. I can't have been the most helpful client as I'm 19 and only just started looking into it last week, but he took all the questions in stride! Put up with me turning to ask my dad questions every 2 minutes as well. I was helped by 2 workers; Sam and Nick. Thank you very much to both!
L Finch
Overall Rating
Good communication and follow ups. Friendly. A thorough research for my insurance needs.
Overall Rating

Sam Barr-Worsfold was very helpful and provided excellent customer service. Sam discovered I was paying too much premium for my current cover. Sam recommended and helped moved to a new cover with lower premium that provided the level of cover (terms required stated in the provider's policy) I wanted. I recommend highly recommend Sam and Drewberry Insurance. Thank you Sam.
Overall Rating
Thorough, knowledgeable and great communication
Overall Rating
Went through each policy in detail and made sure I was getting the correct one for me